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Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

I've been using Retin-A for a few months now because I had bumpy skin and white and black heads that never came to the surface. The results have been amazing and my skin has never looked better but one side effect is dry skin so I experience dry patches and my skin just flaking off. My current daytime moisturizer isn't cutting it so I'm looking for something that is extra hydrating and that has at least spf 15. I'm fine with even drug store brands. I just hate when I put on my moisturizer, do my makeup as then I get to work and I see my skin just flaking off.

Re: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

Not recommending a moisturizer, but this helped my skin look less dry & flakey while the first few weeks on retin-A. Wish I knew about this years ago:

2 words: SCOTCH TAPE:

Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

Drunk elephant lala retro whipped cream. It's always the first thing I use when my eczema breaks out on my face. great for irritated skin since it had really nourishing oils in it.

RE: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

Murad hydrating nutrient gel

Re: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

When I use retin a, my face gets really scaly and dry. I've used expensive moisturizing creams but I still go back to Elevase Moisture Booster to soothe the skin. 

RE: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

I have been using Tri-Luna cream which has Retin-A in it, and it does tend to dry your skin out. I also like the Josie Maran products. I’m currently using the Moonstone drops and whipped Argan oil face butter, and just ordered the Argan oil reserve. I tried a sample of the Belif true cream aqua bomb moisturizer and really liked that as well. It did not sting, was not irritating, and did not break me out. I also like Tatcha the water cream moisturizer.

Re: RE: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

Ceramide creams are the best for retin a reactions. Elevase moisturizer. 

Re: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

Make sure you use sunscreen with your retin-a if you're being exposed to sunlight.


I would use a really good moisturizer you feel is suited well to your skin. I use sunday riley tidal brightening water cream and I LOVE it, but its pricey. I use it at night but have used during day.


What I would recommend trying is this cream instead(more like a gel). Currently I am trying out first aid beauty coconut water cream. I currently use it during the day with other skin care (sunday riley good genes, drunk elephant vit c serum mixed with drunk elephant b hydra and THEN the water cream) The cream itself, I really like how much moisture in it. Its hypoallergenic and should be perfect on sensitive skin. Its not heavy, its gel and light weight, dries in a way that your skin feels soft. (Thanks to the dimethicones, which are not a great ingredient for skin care- watch for breakouts). The skin also sucks the cream in immediately and the price is pretty good.. The product states that it is hypoallergenic, non-comediogenic and suitable for sensitive skin. Looking at the ingredient list like I kind of mentioned before, there are some suspect ingredients that I would be skeptical about (in the way they might break out your skin) However, their study says all their participants didn't break out at all. So far so good for me, but its a new product.


I buy the drunk elephant b hydra , by itself its not an exciting product, but it has ceramide which helps maintain skin barrier, hold in water etc. Its like a supercharge to a good moisturizer. If you look at the photos that are under the product on the website, everyone's skin is GOALS. Youthful, clear and soft. Seriously, go look.


But if I see dryness and flakiness that isn't from your skin getting raw(say like you would in acne treatment), I would make sure you're removing your makeup adequately, washing adequately and exfoliating adequately. Chemical exfoliants are the best, as the grit ones tear your skin up. I use sunday riley good genes(lactic acid treatment) and it clears my skin up because its decongesting my pores, works deep and is responsible for notably cleaning up my acne with the luna(which has retinol).. There is an instant and noticeable difference with good genes. Along with all the other things it does I consider it a miracle ?treatment ?serum, ?cream, ?unicorn dust. Whatever it is called, it basically got me pretty enthusiastic about good skin care. If you are using retin-A and you ever decide to try the good genes, I would be very cautious about introducing it, you might have to alternate days etc. It is extremely pricey and since you're worried more about getting a moisturizer I don't expect you to get it, I'm just giving you overall advice if you ever decide to use it.


I also now use the fareo luna tool and it gets my skin clean like no other. Its gentle unless you have open spots on your face, otherwise it basically polishes any trace of makeup, dead skin, EVERYTHING off your face. So I have no dry flakey skin on after that which will happen if I don't get my skin clean enough. I also don't have any deep seated makeup that sits in my pores. If you didn't want to spend the money on that I would use a similar, cheaper, non vibrating silicone pad/scrubber. Wash cloths are too harsh, unhygienic and don't get the job done right in my opinion- which has lead to flaking and buildup in my experience. Washing with your hands just does not get it clean, leading to the same. Those spin brushes are also unhygienic and harsh but they clean your face well. 


Lastly you need to check if you are using the right cleanser. Like if I used dove soap on my face that would happen because it strips my skin and dries it out. I have combination skin and I'm still trying to find a new cleanser since my glamglow duo cleanse(oil and clay/mud) cleanser was discontinued. Just started to test the drunk elephant jelly cleanser only at night, once a day.


I'm not super knowledgeable about skin care, but this is what my skin care routine has worked itself up to at the present time. I think its important to look at all the steps you are doing to make sure something like dry skin isn't being caused by a mistake in your routine(eg poor exfoliation/cleansing). Sephora is great because often you can get a trial sized sets that you can test and introducing into your routine without buying the whole product. Its been a way I've built up to my current anti-aging/improving texture/scarring/blemish clearing routine I have going on. I'm 25 so I'm hopeful that in particular my anti-aging routine (besides the instant benefits I get now) will pay off when I turn 40 and 50. 🙂


I know its a lot of extra information, but hopefully it gets you thinking about the whole picture.



RE: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

Me too, girl. For whatever reason the area around my mouth is constantly “flaking” I just put up with it b/c the results are so awesome.

RE: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

Josie Maran everything. And also I like belief products a lot. Very hydrating and no breakouts from it.

Re: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

What cleanser are you using with Retin-A? Also have to tried any of the recommended moisturizers and have a favorite?

Re: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

I use prescription retinol too!


IT Secret Sauce has been a lifesaver for me! 

It absorbs beautifully and hydrates without breaking me out. 


Also - once a week I use a nice sleep mask (Fresh Black tea) to give my skin a night off to recover and rehydrate. 



Re: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

I experienced dryness when I first started using Retin-A, too.  I use Cerave PM moisturizer and find it very hydrating; it's good for sensitive skin.  My friend's sister is a dermatologist and she recommends it to her clients.  The PM version doesn't have SPF, but the daytime does.


For REALLY dry areas due to Retin-A, I used Neosporin and it did wonders.  I only needed it short term and used the generic brand.


If you are dry in the eye area, I recommend Clinique Smart Oil.  A little bit goes a long way.


Also, I like to exfoliate dry skin with BHA.  Check out Paula's Choice.

Re: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

I'm currently using cerave pm and I absolutely love it, it's super hydrating. So I tried the am version but to me it seemed too much like just sunscreen and I just didn't like it much. I only experience dryness where my skin is normal. So no issues in my eye area and in my t-zone cuz I still get oily there. I'm going to look into the neosporin recommendation. Thank you. 

Re: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

You can’t use this with Retin-A — it has Hyaluronic acid in it and can cause serious irritation with it, which is a shame because there are a great amount of ceramids in it 


**I Stand corrected! You CAN use Hyaluronic acid with Retinols. It's Hydroxy Acids that you can't use with Retinols!! So sorry!!** 

Re: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

@VeronicaGlee  Do you mean hyaluronic acid? If so, you can absolutely use that with retin-A!

Re: Best Moisturizers While Using Retin-A

Hi @Miniivan,


If you're looking for a great daytime moisturizer, I suggest checking out the Jack Black Double-Duty Face Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 20. This is a lightweight moisturizer, but it's super hydrating! I love layering it over my serums, and it has SPF 20! 


I also suggest checking out the Josie Maran Argan Daily Moisturizer SPF 47. This daily moisturizer is infused with argan oil, so you know you'll skin will get that extra boost of hydration, and with SPF 47, you'll get a great amount of protection from harmful sun rays. I hope this helps!

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