POSTED: 3 Aug 2023

Can You Use Tretinoin With Aesthetic Skin Treatments?

Tretinoin is a prescription skincare product that is is effective in treating acne, hyperpigmentation and skin ageing. However, it is a powerful skin ingredient and can cause sensitivity or irritation if it is not used correctly. One of the biggest questions around Tretinoin is whether you can use it with professional skin treatments like lasers, Botox and fillers. In this article, we’ll explore which treatments are safe to have with Tretinoin and how to safely combine them with Tretinoin.

Tretinoin & Injectable Skin Treatments


Botox is an injectable treatment that relaxes facial muscles to reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles. It is also used to treat gummy smiles, reduce a square jaw and lift the lip.

  • Compatibility with Tretinoin: Generally safe as Botox works on the muscles rather than the skin.
  • Preparation: Avoid tretinoin application 24 to 48 hours before and after treatment to reduce irritation at the injection sites.
  • Aftercare: Follow your practitioner’s Botox aftercare guidelines.

Dermal Fillers

Dermal fillers are gel-like substances that are injected into the skin to restore volume and smooth lines. They are most commonly used for lip enhancement, cheek augmentation, smile lines and tear trough rejuvenation.

  • Compatibility with Tretinoin: Safe with care.
  • Preparation: Pause Tretinoin 48 hours before and after to avoid irritation at the injection site.
  • Aftercare: Follow your practitioner’s instructions for aftercare.

Profhilo & Skin Boosters

Profhilo and skin boosters are innovative injectable hyaluronic acid skin treatments. They hydrate and rejuvenate the skin by stimulating collagen and elastin production. This improves the skin’s overall texture and appearance.

  • Compatibility with Tretinoin: Safe with care.
  • Preparation: Pause Tretinoin 48 hours before and after to minimise potential irritation or sensitivity.
  • Aftercare: Follow your practitioner’s instructions for aftercare.

Advanced Skin Treatments


Collagen induction therapy or microneedling involves using fine needles to create microscopic punctures in the skin. This stimulates collagen production which helps treat fine lines, wrinkles and scarring.

  • Compatibility with Tretinoin: Requires careful planning.
  • Preparation: Stop tretinoin at least a week before.
  • Aftercare: Wait until the skin heals to resume Tretinoin which is usually 48-72 hours.

Laser Treatments

In general, laser treatments use focused light to resurface and rejuvenate the skin. They can treat various skin issues, such as hyperpigmentation, acne, scarring and wrinkles.

  • Compatibility with Tretinoin: Can be combined with caution.
  • Preparation: Discontinue Tretinoin at least 1-2 weeks prior. Ablative lasers may require longer and gentler lasers may require less time.
  • Aftercare: Resume under professional guidance as this will be base don how long your skin takes to heal and of there is a risk of post inflammatory hyperpigmentation.


Microdermabrasion is a skin-resurfacing technique that uses physical exfoliation to remove the top layer of skin. This smoothes fine lines, fades dark spots and promotes new skin growth.

  • Compatibility with Tretinoin: Requires caution.
  • Preparation: Stop Tretinoin 7 days before and after.
  • Aftercare: Prevent over-exfoliation by waiting for healing before resuming Tretinoin.

Chemical Peels

These chemical solutions are applied to the skin. They exfoliate the outer layers and promote skin regeneration. There are a large variety of chemical peel types and strengths which decide how long you need to stop Tretinoin for.

  • Compatibility with Tretinoin: Varies depending on the type and strength of the chemical peel.
  • Preparation: Generally, pausing Tretinoin a few days to a week is recommended before and after the peel.
  • Aftercare: Follow specific guidelines for each procedure.

Professional Beauty Treatments

Facials & Hydrafacial

Simple facials do not generally need a pause from Tretinoin. However, if your facial includes extractions or peels then you should stop the Tretinoin as it will sensitise the skin.

  • Compatibility with Tretinoin: Requires caution.
  • Preparation: Stop Tretinoin 2-3 days before and after.
  • Aftercare: Follow the specific aftercare advice for your treatment.


Whilst waxing is a common hair removal method, it can cause skin irritation if combined with Tretinoin. You might also experience greater pain during the procedure as Tretinoin can sensitise the skin.

  • Compatibility with Tretinoin: Pausing is recommended. If possible, avoid waxing the face if you can whilst on Tretinoin.
  • Preparation: Discontinue Tretinoin for 3-5 days before waxing.
  • Aftercare: Resume a day after waxing and follow relevant aftercare.

LED Masks and Light Therapy

LED masks and light therapy utilise different wavelengths of light to target various skin concerns such as acne, wrinkles and uneven pigmentation. Different colours of light offer specific therapeutic effects on the skin.

  • Compatibility with Tretinoin: Generally safe, but caution may be needed for sensitive skin.
  • Preparation: Generally, you can continue using Tretinoin, but consult with the skincare provider for any specific recommendations. Generally, avoid using at the same time of day as Tretinoin.
  • Aftercare: Follow any specific instructions given by your skincare provider and monitor for any unusual reactions.

Tretinoin is one of the most powerful topical treatments that we have to treat skin ageing and acne. The beauty of Tretinoin is that you can combine it with other skincare products and professional skin treatments. To do this successfully, you need to avoid risks of irritation and sensitivity by preparing and protecting your skin. The above is a general guide to how long to stop Tretinoin before and after the most common beauty treatments. However, this will depend on your individual skin type, skin concerns, and the specific procedure you are having done. Always let your practitioner know that you are using Tretinoin and as they will have specific guidelines for when to stop and restart it depending on the treatment they are offering. They will also provide you with specific aftercare instructions which may include adhering to a specific routine before or after your treatment.

We passionately believe that skincare is personal. Our virtual clinic offers safe and effective treatments like Tretinoin for conditions like acnehyperpigmentationmelasma and skin ageing. Book a virtual consultation with one of our doctors today and take your first step towards great skin.


Authored by:

Dr Amel Ibrahim
Aesthetic Doctor & Medical Director
Founder City Skin Clinic
Member of the Royal College of Surgeons of England
Associate Member of British Association of Body Sculpting GMC Registered - 7049611

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