Differin gel is a topical prescription-only application for the treatment of acne. It is a fairly new product and is milder than the retinoids, and so has become increasingly popular. Differin gel may cause an initial worsening of acne as it begins to work on unseen pimples, but this is perfectly normal.
The active ingredient in Differin gel is adapalene at a concentration of 0.1%. Differin is thought to work by slowing down the accumulation of skin cells that shed in the pores, thus preventing the clogging of pores by dead skin cells.
This drug has not been tested on pregnant women and is known to cause bone deformities in some fetal animals, so it should not be used by anyone who is or may become pregnant.
Differin should not be used by anyone who suffers from eczema or seborrheic dermatitis. In addition, any product that irritates or dries the skin may have an exaggerated effect and may irritate the skin during Differin therapy.
Differin gel should be applied once per day to the affected areas of the skin. After washing and drying the skin, apply a thin film of the gel. Be sure to avoid the eyes and lips. Results should be seen within 8-12 weeks.
As previously mentioned, the first three weeks of use of Differin gel may cause an apparent worsening of acne. This is because the gel is beginning to work on previously unseen pimples, bringing them to the surface of the skin. This is not a reason to stop using the product and will fade during the course of treatment.
Differin gel is an effective anti-acne prescription medication that is sometimes prescribed by doctors and dermatologists. Interestingly, many doctors prescribe not only Differin gel but also non-prescription products containing benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid to accelerate the clearing of the skin.