Which retinol is best for use on the delicate eye area?

Dear Dr. Irwin, I'm a 33 year old with a little bit of sun damage. Only since turning 30 have gotten wise to daily sunscreen use, alas. Now, I'm looking for an anti-aging product to use around my eyes, even on my lower and upper eyelids if possible (I have fine lines now, and my mom has really droopy eyelids, so I know what's coming...). I use regular ol' .025% Tretinoin Cream on the rest of my face, and I think that's probably too much for the delicate eye area. Do you recommend that I buy a weaker OTC retinol for my eyes, like the SkinMedica .25% product, or should I look into something else? Thank you so much! Best, Chris (Washington, DC)

Thanks for writing Chris!   Since that skin is quite sensitive on almost everyone, I really vote for a product that is specifically formulated for the delicate eyelid skin.   There are starting to be some good ones on the market now.    Here’s a link to one for the eyelids that’s all-trans retinol.  

At your age, for great maintenance, consider doing the Thermage eyelid treatment which is FDA approved for the eyelids and quite comfortable to do.  It will keep the collagen healthier in that area.   Also an eyelid sunscreen is important if you are outdoors much. 

Dr. I


Dr. Brandith Irwin, MD

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