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What is topical retinol?

Dermatologist Dr. Heidi Waldorf explains what topical retinol is and what the benefits are. Watch Dr. Waldorf's video for tips and information on cosmetic dermatology and skin health.


Topical retinol is a skin medication containing a type of vitamin A. When applied to the skin, topical retinol acts as an antioxidant to help treat conditions like acne and signs of aging. Topical retinols are available in a variety of forms, including creams, lotions, serums, and oils for your face, eyes, hands and lips. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.