Differin (adapalene) gel for Skin

DIFFERIN Gel is a prescription medicine (topical use) used to treat acne vulgaris in people 12 years of age and older.

It is not known if DIFFERIN Gel is safe to use in children younger than 12 years of age or in people 65 years of age and older.

Who should not use DIFFERIN Gel?

Do not use DIFFERIN Gel if you:

  • are allergic to adapalene or any of the ingredients in DIFFERIN Gel.

What should I tell my doctor before using DIFFERIN Gel?

Before you use DIFFERIN Gel, tell your doctor if you

  • have other skin problems, including cuts or sunburn.
  • have any other medical conditions.
  • are pregnant, or planning to become pregnant. It is not known if DIFFERIN Gel will harm your unborn baby.
  • are breastfeeding or planning to breastfeed. It is not known if DIFFERIN Gel can pass into your breast milk.
  • Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescriptions, medicine for acne, nonprescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Using DIFFERIN Gel with topical medicines that contain resorcinol, sulfur, or salicylic acid may cause skin irritation.

How should I use DIFFERIN Gel?

Use DIFFERIN Gel exactly as your doctor tells you to use it. DIFFERIN Gel is for skin use only and shouldn’t be used in or on your mouth, eyes, nose, neck, or vagina.

Apply DIFFERIN Gel 1 time a day. Do not use more DIFFERIN Gel more than once. Using it more than 1 time a day may increase your chance of skin irritation.

Applying DIFFERIN Gel:

  • Apply DIFFERIN Gel once daily before bedtime, or as directed by your doctor. First, wash your face with a gentle cleanser and apply a moisturizer to a wet face, then allow your face to dry so the skin is hydrated, and then apply a pea-sized amount of DIFFERIN Gel.
  • DIFFERIN Gel comes in a tube and a pump. If you have been prescribed the:
    • Tube: Squeeze a small amount and spread a thin layer over the entire face and any other affected areas.
    • Pump: Depress the pump to dispense a small amount of DIFFERIN Gel, and spread a thin layer over the entire face and any other affected area

What should I avoid while using DIFFERIN Gel?

  • You should avoid spending time in the sunlight, on tanning beds, or on sunlamps. DIFFERIN Gel can make your skin sensitive to the sun and the light from tanning beds and sunlamps. You should wear sunscreen and wear a hat and clothes that cover the areas treated with DIFFERIN Gel.
  • You should avoid weather extremes such as wind and cold as this may cause irritation to your skin.
  • You should avoid applying DIFFERIN Gel to abrasions, cuts, and sunburned skin.
  • You should avoid skin products that may dry or irritate your skin such as astringents, harsh soaps, and cosmetics that have strong skin drying effects. Also, avoid products containing high levels of alcohol.
  • Avoid the use of other retinoids, AHAs (glycolic acid, lactic acid, and mandelic acid), BHAs (salicylic acid), benzoyl peroxide, PHAs and LHAs, clindamycin, adapalene, chemical peels, balsam of Peru (myroxylon pereirae), cinnamic aldehyde, cinnamyl alcohol, hydroxycitronellal, isoeugenol, eugenol, oak moss absolute, oil of bergamot, alpha-amyl cinnamic aldehyde, geraniol, linalool, lavender, perfumes, toilet water, colognes, masking perfumes unscented perfumes, aroma chemicals, essential oils, cassia oil, cinnamon, cloves, citronella, ethylene bassylate, sweet orange, sweet basil, citrus lemon peel, limonene, spearmint, and menthol at the same time when applying Differin gel.
  • You should avoid facial steamers, waxing, and other hair removal procedures on skin treated with DIFFERIN Gel.
  • Be very careful when shaving as your skin will more sensitive.

What are some mistakes beginners make when using DIFFERIN Gel?

  • Not using a healing ointment. Try to use a healing ointment like Cerave or Aquaphor around the eyes, the mouth, angles of the nose, neck, and mucous membranes to protect the skin before applying Differin gel.
  • Not washing your hands after applying Differin gel.
  • Washing your face too often. Try to wash your face only once a day (ideally in the evening).
  • Do not use it as a spot treatment.
  • Do not stop using it once your acne clears up.
  • Not seeing results and stopping too quickly. It takes about 12 weeks to some results so do not stop using it.
  • Do not use it on the eyelids.

What are the possible side effects of DIFFERIN Gel?

The most common side effects of DIFFERIN Gel are skin pain, skin peeling, and sunburn.

DIFFERIN Gel may cause serious side effects including:

  • Local skin reactions: Local skin reactions will mostly happen during the first 4 weeks of treatment and usually lessen with continued use of DIFFERIN Gel. Signs and symptoms of local skin reaction include:
    • Stinging or burning
    • Redness
    • Dryness
    • Scaling
  • Allergic reactions: DIFFERIN Gel may cause an allergic reaction. Stop using DIFFERIN Gel and tell your doctor right away if you have any of these symptoms of an allergic reaction:
    • skin rash, itching, or hives
    • trouble breathing or chest pain
    • swelling of your face, eyes, lips, tongue, or throat

What are the ingredients in DIFFERIN Gel?

Active ingredient: adapalene
Inactive ingredients: propylene glycol, methylparaben, poloxamer 124, carbomer 940, edetate disodium, purified water, and sodium hydroxide. May contain hydrochloric acid for pH adjustment.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Can I use DIFFERIN Gel with a salicylic acid cleanser?

Yes, you can use DIFFERIN Gel with salicylic acid cleanser as long as you use them both at separate times of the day. You can use the salicylic acid cleanser in the morning and DIFFERIN Gel at night.

Can I use DIFFERIN Gel for sebaceous filaments?

Yes, DIFFERIN Gel can be used for sebaceous filaments and is completely safe. It is actually more soluble in oil than tretinoin or retinol so it may be better for oily skin or sebaceous filaments.

Can I use DIFFERIN Gel for sebaceous hyperplasia?

Yes, DIFFERIN Gel can be used for sebaceous hyperplasia and is completely safe. You can use a salicylic acid cleanser in the morning and a DIFFERIN cream or gel at night to reduce it and keep the condition from worsening.

Can DIFFERIN Gel help with PIE?

Yes, DIFFERIN can help to reduce PIH and is completely safe.

Can I use DIFFERIN Gel for perioral dermatitis?

Yes, DIFFERIN Gel can be used for perioral dermatitis and is completely safe. You can consult your doctor for more information.

Can I use DIFFERIN Gel for seborrheic dermatitis?

Yes, DIFFERIN Gel can be used for seborrheic dermatitis and is completely safe.

Does DIFFERIN Gel cause closed comedones?

Yes, DIFFERIN gel could cause closed comedones because it might damage your skin barrier, and using DIFFERIN Gel with other exfoliating products can also cause closed comedones.

Can I use DIFFERIN Gel for wrinkles?

Yes, DIFFERIN gel can be used for wrinkles, but it won’t be as effective as tretinoin. This is because DIFFERIN gel is mainly used for acne whereas tretinoin has both acne and anti-aging benefits.

Can I use DIFFERIN gel for photoaging?

DIFFERIN gel can help with mild to moderate photoaging like hyperpigmentation or dark spots..