March 28, 2023

Sometimes you need to take your skincare routine to the next level with a little help of prescription skincare ingredients. That’s why I partnered with Apostrophe and board-certified dermatologist Dr. Aimee Paik for this video to discuss popular prescription skincare ingredients like tretinoin, clindamycin, hydroquinone, spironolactone, and azelaic acid. These are the ingredients to turn to if you have skin concerns like acne, hyperpigmentation, or melasma like I do.

We talk a lot about my favorite skincare ingredients on this channel but we don’t always focus in on the prescription ingredients so today that’s exactly what i’m gonna do i’m gonna tell you about the top five most popular prescription skincare ingredients for this video i partnered with apostrophe you’ve probably heard me talk about them because they’re one

Of my favorite services to get my skin care prescriptions from if you’re not familiar with apostrophe i love it i suggest it to everybody because it just makes your life so much easier when you’re trying to get your prescriptions you basically go onto their website you fill out a series of questions basically telling them about your skin history any kind of

Issues that you’re dealing with and just anything that’s really important for your treatment plan then they have a board-certified dermatologist review your treatment plan and also suggest the prescriptions that you should have and then they essentially give you your prescriptions it’s that easy you can check in with them they check in on you you can tell them

How your progress is going with the prescriptions which is something that i really love i’ve actually jumped around from different strengths of tretinoin while under their plan and it’s been so easy and just super helpful so if you haven’t used their services before i highly recommend it and if it’s your first time you can actually use my code to get your first

Consultation for five dollars and also five dollars off of your first prescription all right so now let’s get into the ingredients with a little help from board certified dermatologist and also apostrophe medical director dr amy pack number one is an ingredient that you’ve heard me talk about several times and that is tretinoin you’ve probably heard me talk about

Retinoids which is the umbrella term for ingredients that are vitamin a derivatives so this also includes retinol which you also hear me talk about often trenon is also a derivative of vitamin a it’s also known as retinoic acid and it’s usually what we’re trying to get to when we start using retinoids so a lot of the time we’ll start off really slowly and really

Gently with some of our retinoids and then work our way up to the prescription strength so tretinoin is really that gold standard ingredient that we’re trying to work our way up to because that is the ingredient that we’re gonna see the most difference in our skin with it’s also the ingredient that has the most studies on it so we know the most information about

Tretinoin and i think it’s one of the reasons why dermatologists really love it dr pack also says that dermatologists just love tretinoin because it’s a multifunctional ingredient it basically treats everything that anyone could come in for whether they’re teenagers or have more mature skin because it treats acne it treats fine lines and wrinkles and also post

Inflammatory hyperpigmentation and the way that it does this is it speeds up skin cell turnover it actually does stimulate collagen production which is something that we hear from you know a lot of ingredients that they stimulate collagen production but really tretinoin is truly that gold standard ingredient that does it but also on the flip side it inhibits the

Molecules that break down collagen and elastin so it’s really working in multiple different ways to just make you look better so it’s just the gold standard ingredient from the day i can remember when i got into skincare it has been the ingredient that all dermatologists have backed i have not in my career met one dermatologist that does not love tretinoin if

You do get it prescribed to you the strengths of it can vary but it goes all the way up to 0.1 which by the way i have never actually personally reached like that’s usually too strong for me a lot of dermatologists will say that you should use it every single night if you can work your way to that but when you are getting started on it you might want to start on

A lower prescription strength and you also want to use it like two to three days a week just to see how your skin acclimates to it dr pax says that typically you’ll start to see some improvement in your skin after about eight to twelve weeks of consistent usage but if you do have severe acne or fine lines and wrinkles it might take a little longer to really see

Those results as far as the ingredients that it can be combined with i actually have found that dermatologists love to combine it with other kind of treatment ingredients so for me specifically i’ve had other brightening ingredients prescribed with it like for instance with this prescription that i first started on with apostrophe they gave me tretinoin at point

Zero one eight percent which was really low because i knew that i was really sensitive and i was like kind of a little bit nervous to like dip my toes back into using tretinoin because i do know that there’s a little bit of a little bit of a perch sometimes and it can irritate your skin if you go a little too strong at first but then they also put an ingredient

That we’re going to talk about in a second called spironolactone at five percent and also tranexamic acid but after i got acclimated to that they actually bumped me up to hydroquinone six percent combined with tretinoin at point zero five percent which is also a much higher strength and probably the highest that i’ve ever gone with my tretinoin prescription it’s

Basically where i’m at right now and then they also put in a corticosteroid in there just to really help to keep any of my inflammation down from using that higher percentage of tretinoin so it’s really interesting to get tretinoin from a service like apostrophe because it can really customize how you’re using an ingredient like tretinoin and also the ingredients

That you’re combining with it next up is one of my all-time favorite skincare ingredients and that’s azelaic acid you’ve probably heard me talk about azelaic acid a lot because it’s also available over the counter meaning that you can actually get it without a prescription but it only goes up to 10 lots of dermatologists love to prescribe azolic acid especially

At higher percentages that you cannot get over the counter so i’m talking like 15 and even up to 20 and that’s because it’s a really great ingredient for all skin types even people with sensitive skin especially for people that cannot tolerate tretinoin if you’re unfamiliar with azaleic acid it’s actually a dicarboxylic acid it’s a really mild yet efficacious

Acid and it’s really different from the other acids that are really popular on the market for exfoliating your skin like your bhas and your ahas which are alpha hydroxy acids so it’s really in a category of its own dr pax says it’s a gentle and well tolerated ingredient which is one of the reasons why they prescribe it so much it’s used to treat rosacea acne

Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation and melasma which is one of the reasons why i love it so much and also it is pregnancy safe so for people that cannot tolerate tretinoin or for anyone that is pregnant this is a really great ingredient i think a lot of people associate it with treating rosacea but it’s really great to unclog your pores it’s keratolytic and it’s

Comedolytic and that basically means that it prevents comedone so think about your whiteheads and your blackheads so it’s basically unclogging your pores and it also decreases keratin production so if you are getting whiteheads or clogged pores it’s going to help to decrease it in that way but a lot of people don’t realize that it’s a great tyrosinase inhibitor

That means it prevents the production of the enzyme that leads to hyperpigmentation and dr pax says it’s actually been shown to have the equivalent skin lightening effects as four percent hydroquinone when used twice a day for four months one of the other reasons why azelaic acid is such a great ingredient to add into your skincare routine is because it goes

Well with other skincare ingredients you can even use it with benzoyl peroxide which is almost unheard of because benzoyl peroxide does not play well with other skin care ingredients you can use it with tretinoin you can use it with niacinamide you can use it with salicylic acid it’s just a really well tolerated ingredient in general for some people you actually

Might feel some kind of an itchiness or burning sensation when you first start using it but your skin usually will acclimate to it or you’ll feel it just for that first five to ten minutes after you apply it but it usually subsides after that and of course just like most skincare ingredients you have to use it consistently for at least two to three months to

Really start to see an improvement in your skin next up is a really popular acne treatment and that is spironolactone spironolactone can be used both topically and orally you’ll hear about the oral prescription a lot more because it’s usually one of those go-to treatments that dermatologists recommend to women specifically women when they are dealing with hormonal

Acne and that’s because spironolactone helps to block the effects of androgen hormone so think like testosterone which can usually lead to more oily skin and also to those hormonal breakouts this also does mean that men cannot take oral spironolactone because it does have that systemic effect on your body but everyone can use topical spironolactone dr pax says

That androgens are a class of hormones that actually play a big role major role in the types of acne that both men and women get so it’s great that this ingredient is actually available out there a lot of the time dermatologists will treat women’s acne with oral contraceptive pills or with spironolactone and so that’s where you’ll hear it come in a lot the main

Benefits of spironolactone is that one it targets the hormonal causes of acne in oil production so those are the things i was mentioning that you know might be the main cause of your your breakouts for women specifically it can really improve severe acne and also rosacea and it’s also great to reduce acne that’s located on your back and on your chest which can

Be a problem also due to hormones again there is oral and topical sprotolactone topical spironolactone can actually be used by everybody because it does not have the systemic effects on your hormones but when it comes to topicals ferona lactone dr pat does say to think of it more as a booster to your current acne treatment next up is an ingredient that i find

Myself using often because i deal with hyperpigmentation and melasma and that is hydroquinone it is a skin lightening agent it is not a bleaching agent which i think a lot of people get worried about it’s a skin lightening agent that actually works to inhibit the production of tyrosinase which is the enzyme that actually leads to your hyperpigmentation because

Hydroquinone is such a powerful skin lightening agent it’s used to treat melasma which is a type of discoloration of your skin that’s formed from different reasons like hormones but it also helps to lighten discoloration from post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation and it also lightens up age spots and sun spots and freckles so it’s a really great skin lightening

Ingredient so it’s not going to lighten your overall skin tone but it’s going to lighten the areas where you have over production of melanin so again think of the patchiness the spots and the discoloration that you might have on your skin one of the really important notes about hydroquinone and it’s one of the reasons why it’s available only by prescription is

That it’s best used cyclically meaning that you use it for a period of time and then you stop using it and then you might get back on it for another period of time so it’s really important to be under the care of a dermatologist or a professional when you’re using it and again it’s an ingredient that apostrophe prescribed to me in combination with tretinoin so

I really love that you can get that personalized prescription from apostrophe and then last of the popular prescription skincare ingredients is clindamycin if you’re unfamiliar with it it’s actually an antibiotic that’s used to fight bacterial infection as a medication you can actually find it used topically and orally but dr pax says it’s usually prescribed

Topically some of the main benefits of clindamycin is that it targets inflammation so that redness that you might see from something like acne it also helps to target the bacteria that causes acne and then it can also clear clogged pores so it’s usually used to treat inflamed acne lesions so think about that red acne that you tend to see but it can also help

To improve non-inflamed acne lesions so again think like blackheads one of the really interesting notes from dr pack about clindamycin is that it can also increase antibiotic resistance so they tend to recommend using it with a benzoyl peroxide wash or a gel which i thought was just really interesting because i would have never ever thought of that when you use

It alongside benzoyl peroxide it actually helps to minimize that antibiotic resistance so again this is one of the reasons why it’s really important to be under the care of a dermatologist when you are using this type of ingredient so those are the top five most popular prescribed skin care ingredients a big thank you to dr amy pack from apostrophe and also to

Apostrophe for sponsoring this video i hope this information was really helpful we were just touching on these ingredients obviously there is so much more to know about them i even have some separate ingredients especially about you know ingredients like spironolactone i have a whole video with dr sam ellis that you can watch i’ll leave it in the description box

Below if you have any questions you can feel free to ask in the comments you can also find me on instagram i’m at susan yara and i’ll talk to you soon

Transcribed from video
Dermatologist Explains Prescription Skincare Ingredients: Tretinoin, Hydroquinone, & More! By Mixed Makeup