Shopping Product Reviews

A313 French Retinol Is ‘A Miracle Cream’ — And On Sale

HuffPost and its publishing partners may receive a share from purchases made via links on this page. Every item is independently selected by the HuffPost Shopping team. Prices and availability are subject to change. The experts consulted for this story do not necessarily endorse the products ahead unless otherwise noted.

Time and time again, dermatologists have told us how essential retinoids (like retinol) are to a well-rounded skin care routine, specifically one that’s geared toward premature skin aging prevention. This is because, according to board-certified dermatologist Dr. Rebecca Marcus, retinol increases cell turnover, thus helping to stimulate collagen production.

When it comes to this powerful “active” ingredient, there’s an ongoing debate about prescription-only compositions. Marcus explained that they’re already in an active form that can be utilized by the skin, making their effect stronger and faster than OTC products.

The other side of the argument insists that stronger doesn’t always mean better. Retinol, particularly prescription-strength, has a notorious reputation for causing irritation, especially for more mature skin, which Marcus said is more delicate. OTC retinol, on the other hand, can be less sensitizing and better tolerated, though potentially less effective.

But, the Pharma Development A313 retinol cream from France, which features a distinctive texture and three different types of effective retinol, may be able to provide a happy medium between the two. Today, the cream is on sale for nearly 25% off although we suspect it won’t be marked down for very long.

″[A313] contains minimal ingredients in its vehicle, which is helpful for those who are sensitive to fragrances or other ingredients that are commonly found in OTC retinol products,” Marcus said.

And while she acknowledged the fact that the actives in A313 are not the same potency as the retinoid acid present in prescription-strength formulas like Tretinoin, “the three types of retinol in A313 are effective over-the-counter-strength retinol ingredients.”

In fact, some users who had been using prescription-strength Tretinoin then made the switch to this alternative, say they prefer A313 and have maintained the same results that they had with the prescription-strength formula.

Its distinctive occlusive texture is closer to a balm, which according to reviewers, can be more hydrating compared to other pricier formulations that you might find on the OTC market. The brand claims that the 2% retinol concentration can help unclog pores, minimize fine lines, reduce hyperpigmentation and even out skin texture.

Reviewers agree that this lower strength hasn’t impacted A313’s efficacy and suggested adhering to a gradual and minimal application process in order to avoid redness or skin flaking, similar to the “tolerance building” period required for prescription retinoids. This period typically involves just applying a pea-sized amount one or two times a week for a few months before increasing to a more frequent application. (It’s always a good idea to check with your dermatologist to know if retinol is a good option for you.)

Put A313 to the test and potentially target multiple skin concerns with this one under $20 product, or take a peek at some promising reviews just in case you need a bit more convincing.

Promising Amazon reviews:

“I have tried so many different products. I have spent so much money. This is superb !! I will never touch anything else. My skin is beautiful. My pores have shrunk , fine lines and wrinkles are gone and the skin texture is soft like I’ve always wanted it.” — Bella.

“I was skeptical on purchasing this as I figured it would dry my face out as the other creams like this do. This actually hydrates my face and I have seen a huge improvement in my skin. I’m turning 40 and since I’ve started using this product I can actually say my face looks younger.” — Miss Pissy

I’ve been using prescription Tretinoin for 20 years now and I like this A313 more because of the thick moisture barrier it gives. Has all of the benefits of keeping skin clear, high cell turnover to eliminate fine lines and wrinkles BUT…..
1. START SLOW. When they say pea size- they mean PEA SIZE. This stuff spreads and is thick in the best of ways. Once every day or two or your skin will become irritated. This is strong stuff. It will sting if you’re putting it on too often. But then your skin will start to tolerate it more and you can slowly move up to once at night.
2. DO NOT for the love of everything holy and holey put on within 45 minutes to an hour of washing your face or showering. Water will make this stuff sting like the devil and you do not need that in your life. Just wait.
3. If you’re a woman of a *ahem* certain age that tends to sweat at night, you may want to stick with just using a tiiiny amount.
This stuff will literally replace so many skin care products. My skin is the best it’s ever been in my life and it’s supple and moisturized. It’s the miracle cream we’ve all wished for.” — Huskermama

Since I’ve been using A313 for about 6 months my skin’s general health and condition have significantly improved. It immediately and successfully lightened the sun-induced hyperpigmentation I had. My dark sun spots have faded to almost nothing, so I don’t need to apply makeup to hide them. In addition, my skin appears less wrinkled and has become somewhat firmer and smoother.” — Diana Duque

“I’ve been using this for two weeks. I was looking for something to improve my skin’s texture and hydration. It did both- put it on at night and I’m noticing my skin is super hydrated in the morning and overall my deeper wrinkles and fine lines look diminished! I also have zero breakouts now and it healed the couple of blemishes I had when I started it. It does tingle if I get it too close to my upper eyelids but I put it high over my crow feet and lower lid area and it’s been fine. I use it nightly now after the initial tingling time frame when I had to do every other day. I’m a believer! It’s a generous tube size and I only need a pea size.” — Lively

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *