Differin Gel Treatment for Acne
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Expected delivery: Wednesday 20th JanuaryOrder it within:

Differin Gel Treatment

From £25.99

Medication features

  • Contains Adapalene
  • Reduces skin turnover, to keep the pores clear
  • Restoring skin tone and texture 
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Expected delivery: Wednesday 20th January


What is Differin Gel/Cream?

Differin is a gel or cream that is used in the treatment of acne and contains the active ingredient Adapalene.

Adapalene is a retinoid, which reduces inflammation of the skin and minimizes the formation of blackheads and whiteheads by reducing the growth of keratin surface skin cells that can block pores. Sebum is a natural, oily substance produced by glands just under the surface of the skin, needed to keep the skin smooth and supple. People suffering from acne often produce too much sebum, which can mix with the dead keratin skin cells and cause the pores to become blocked.

Differin 0.1% gel/cream applied to the affected areas will help reduce the amount of keratin skin cells, which will unblock the pores and sebaceous glands, allowing the sebum to escape over time. Differin 0.1% gel/cream also increases the natural cycle of the skin cells. This speeds up the natural exfoliation of the skin’s outer layers, keeping the pores unblocked.

Differin is suitable for treating mild to moderate acne and can be combined with a topical or oral antibiotic for more severe acne. The gel/cream should be applied once daily and you should ensure that you wash and dry your hands and face before applying the cream. Significant results can be seen after 8 weeks of consistent treatment.



  • Apply Differin cream/gel to the affected areas once daily in the evening
  • Apply a small amount to cover the affected areas using clean fingertips and rub in lightly.
  • Initial treatment for the first week will result in effects that resemble mild sunburn, accompanied with itching, redness and warmth, this is normal and means the treatment is working, the effects will reduce over time. This is known as the Differin Purge (More about this below)
  • Use continuously for 3 months, (providing the response is progressively improving).
  • You may use cosmetics and moisturisers whilst you are using Differin cream, however before applying anything else wait until the Differin is fully absorbed into the skin before.
  • Differin can dry the so it is important to try to ensure that any cosmetics containing alcohol or other skin-drying ingredients are not used, as this will worsen the dry skin.

What is the Differin Purge?

The Differin purge is a period of discomfort for the ACNE sufferer. When you initially apply Differin, you may see positive results within a week if you are lucky, and maybe even a large reduction in your ACNE. However, in the second week, the skin may go back to its existing condition maybe even worse. This is because the clogged pores in the lower layers of your skin will rapidly reach the surface now and leave the skin susceptible once again.

What shall I do about the Differin purge?

The purge is only to be feared, as it leads ACNE sufferers to believe their condition is getting worse and their treatment isn’t working. Which mentally stops them using it and they become inconsistent with treatment and eventually end up seeking alternative medicine. Please note this may not be the case for you, and providing a healthcare professional agrees that you can continue treatment, you should not stop using Differin due to the “purge” effect.  Just tolerate the symptoms for another week or so. Once the blocks under the pores begin clearing out, the skin can start to heal. Just think of it like this: the top layer gets cleaned easily as it’s on the surface, so you see immediate results and you think it’s over, but ACNE roots deep into the skin, so as Differin carries on working the clogged pores from deep within now have the chance to come to the newly cleaned surface and leave the skin finally. If you can tolerate this, you will continue to see the benefits of Differin for months to come. Once your skin is healthy and free from oily clogged pores, you will feel confident once again and your skin will be able to ‘breath’.


  • Is acne a contagious condition?

    No, you can touch or hug a person with acne without any fear to catch acne.

  • Does repeated washing of my face make acne go away faster?

    No, you shouldn’t wash your face several time a day, because it removes all skin oil resulting in
    stimulation of sebaceous glands to produce excess oil (aka, worsened acne).

  • Can stress cause acne?

    Yes, stress may be one of the leading causes of acne,and it is also considered one of acne triggers.

  • What is the best treatment for acne?

    Acne should be treated individuallyas severity of cases differ from person to another.

  • Can certain types of food cause acne?

    No, acne is not caused by food.

  • I started acnetreatment three weeks ago and I see no improvement. Do I need to try another medication?

    You have to be more patientas most of acne treatments needs two to three months to work


Causes of ACNE

There is a strong relation between ACNE formation and hormonal changes that occur at puberty. These hormones have two roles in acne. On one hand, they activate specific glands located adjacent to hair follicles under the skin, and this activation causes the glands to produce more an oily material known as “abnormal sebum”. The abnormal serum, in turn, activates certain bacteria that causes inflammation and pus formation.

On the other hand, the hormones thicken the inner lining of the hair follicles causing pores blockade (blockade of the opening of the hair follicles).

ACNE formation factors 

Four factors are involved in acne formation:

  1. The activity of certain hormones at puberty (androgens).
  2. Excess oil production by the glands under the skin (sebaceous glands).
  3. Bacteria (a specific type called P. Acnes).
  4. Blockade of hair follicles by oil and dead skin.

 Face, forehead, chest, upper back and shoulders are the most common areas to have acne due to the presence of more sebaceous (oil-producing) glands that are connected to the hair follicles.

 Triggers that cause ACNE flare-ups:

  • Many women have acne during the first pregnancy trimester.
  • Adult women may have acne at certain times due to hormonal changes, they may have flares of acne just before the period.
  • Women with polycystic ovary syndrome suffer usually from acne and weight gain.
  • Stress
  • Spicy food, chocolate, skim milk and high-carbohydrates food.
  • Some cosmetic products of low quality.

Medications that cause ACNE flare-ups:

Many medications aggravate acne, including:

  • Antiepileptics (Phenytoin, Carbamazepine and Phenobarbital).
  • Cyclosporine.
  • Oral corticosteroids.
  • Testosterone.
  • Anabolic steroids.
  • Antidepressants (Lithium)
  • Antituberculous drugs (Isoniazid and Rifampicin).

Side Effects

Side Effects

Side effects are often worse during the first week of Differin use but slowly settle thereafter. 

  • Stinging sensation
  • Dryness of the skin
  • Skin rash
  • Scaling and burning


IngredientsClindamycin / Benzoyl PeroxideAdapaleneLymecycline
ActionDual action on bacteria; antibiotic and skin sheddingHelps unblock pores and reduce inflammationAntibiotic kills bacteria
Oral or Topical?TopicalTopicalOral
DirectionsApply thin layer at night after washing.Apply thin layer at night after washing.Take ONE capsules DAILY (preferably in the morning)


When to stop/avoid using Differin 

  • Do not use this medicine on areas where you have cuts or scrapes or if you have eczema.
  • Avoid contact with the eyes, mouth or nostrils, and avoid other very sensitive areas of the body. If accidental contact occurs, wash with warm water immediately.
  • Avoid exposure to strong sunlight and artificial UV light. If you experience sensitivity or irritation when applying for this medicine, stop using it and tell your GP. You may be asked to use the gel less often or to stop using it for a short time. Talk to your GP or pharmacist if you are not sure.
  • Tell your GP or pharmacist if you are taking, have recently taken or might take any other medicines:
  • Other acne products (containing benzoyl peroxide, erythromycin or clindamycin) may be used with Differin but they must be applied in the morning and Differin at night.
  • Cosmetics may be used but they must not cause blackheads or dry the skin.

Expected delivery: Wednesday 20th JanuaryOrder it within:


Expected delivery: Wednesday 20th JanuaryOrder it within:

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