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Difference Between Retinol Gel and Retinol Cream

Skincare has become a necessity to not only women but also men. This has seen the development of a wide range of skincare products including cosmetics, fillers, exfoliators, peels, laser resurfacing and retinol therapy. These support skin integrity, relieve skin conditions and enhance the appearance. For people dealing with acne, retinol therapy is one of the most effective treatments, available in gel, liquid and cream forms. Although retinol gel and retinol cream are derived from the same product, they are different in various ways. 

 

What is Retinol Gel?

This is a vitamin A metabolite in a gel form that helps the skin renew itself while also preventing the formation and spread of pimples, whiteheads, and blackheads by peeling off dead skin, reducing mottled skin discoloration and smoothing rough skin. Retinol, the active ingredient, facilitates the shedding of old skin hence promoting the growth of new skin while also blocking the skins hardening process. The gel can be used in the morning and at night, or as per the prescription.

 

What is Retinol Cream?

This is a vitamin A metabolite in a cream form used to reduce and remove the appearance of blackheads, pimples, wrinkles, age spots. Most people, however, experience drying and peeling in the first 6-12 weeks of use and discontinue use. It should be however noted that this is just a side effect that eventually wears off. Consistency should, however, be observed for the best results. The product is best used with a sunlight avoidance program, this treatment has been deemed to be effective.

 

Similarities between Retinol Gel and Retinol Cream

  • Both are derived from Retinol
  • Both are for external use only
  • Both may have side effects, commonly referred to as retinoid flare
  • Both are available for acne treatment by prescription

 

Differences between Retinol Gel and Retinol Cream

Definition

Retinol gel is a vitamin A metabolite in a gel form that helps the skin renew itself while also preventing the formation and spread of pimples, whiteheads, and blackheads by peeling off dead skin, reducing mottled skin discoloration and smoothing rough skin. On the other hand, retinol cream is a vitamin A metabolite in a cream form used to reduce and remove the appearance of blackheads, pimples, wrinkles, age spots.

Form

Retinol gel is in gel form while retinol cream is in cream form.

Alcohol content

Retinol gel contains more alcohol while retinol cream contains less alcohol.

Drying effect

While retinol gel is more drying to the skin hence a moisturizer is recommended before use, retinol cream is less drying to the skin.

Best time to use

Retinol gel is more effective in the summer while retinol cream is more effective in the winter.

Strengths

Retinol gel is available in two strengths, 0.01% and 0.025% by weight. On the other hand, retinol cream is available in three strengths, 0.025%, 0.05% and 0.5% by weight.

Retinol Gel vs. Retinol Cream: Comparison Table

 

Summary of Retinol Gel vs. Retinol Cream

Retinol gel is a vitamin A metabolite in a gel form that helps the skin renew itself while also preventing the formation and spread of pimples, whiteheads, and blackheads by peeling off dead skin, reducing mottled skin discoloration and smoothing rough skin. On the other hand, retinol cream is a vitamin A metabolite in a cream form used to reduce and remove the appearance of blackheads, pimples, wrinkles, age spots. While these two are effective against acne treatment, consistency should, however, be observed for the best results.

 

Tabitha Njogu

Tabitha graduated from Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology with a Bachelor’s Degree in Commerce, whereby she specialized in Finance. She has had the pleasure of working with various organizations and garnered expertise in business management, business administration, accounting, finance operations, and digital marketing.

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References :


[0]Miyashi Y & Krieg T. Therapy of Skin Diseases: A Worldwide Perspective on Therapeutic Approaches and Their Molecular Basis. Springer Science & Business Media Publishers, 2010. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=jFurh7g1Uz8C&pg=PA364&dq=Difference+between+Retinol+Gel+and+Retinol+Cream&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiPmtqUy7fkAhUL2BoKHSDlCM8Q6AEILTAB#v=onepage&q=Difference%20between%20Retinol%20Gel%20and%20Retinol%20Cream&f=false

[1]Hsu J & Arndt K. Manual of Dermatologic Therapeutics. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins Publishers, 2007. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=CP27h0r-FjwC&pg=PA9&dq=Difference+between+Retinol+Gel+and+Retinol+Cream&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiPmtqUy7fkAhUL2BoKHSDlCM8Q6AEIMjAC#v=onepage&q=Difference%20between%20Retinol%20Gel%20and%20Retinol%20Cream&f=false

[2]Maibach H & Baran R. Textbook of Cosmetic Dermatology. CRC Press Publishers, 2010. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=rKHSBQAAQBAJ&pg=PA354&dq=Difference+between+Retinol+Gel+and+Retinol+Cream&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiPmtqUy7fkAhUL2BoKHSDlCM8Q6AEIQTAE#v=onepage&q=Difference%20between%20Retinol%20Gel%20and%20Retinol%20Cream&f=false

[3]Image credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/skeyndor/34092364943

[4]Image credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/skeyndor/15028513884

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