Aklief vs. Differin Gel

Are Aklief and Differin Gel the Same Thing?

Aklief (trifarotene) Cream and Differin (adapalene) Gel are retinoids indicated for the topical treatment of acne vulgaris.

Differin Gel is available over-the-counter (OTC).

Side effects of Aklief Cream and Differin Gel that are similar include application site reactions (such as irritation, itching, pain, redness, dryness, stinging/burning, discoloration, rash, swelling, and lesions) and worsening of acne.

Side effects of Aklief Cream that are different from Differin Gel include sunburn and allergic dermatitis.

Aklief Cream may interact with other drugs.

Differin Gel may also interact with products containing alpha hydroxy acids, glycolic acid, alcohol/lime/menthol, sulfur, resorcinol, or salicylic acid.

What Are Possible Side Effects of Aklief?

Common side effects of Aklief include:

  • application site reactions such as:
    • irritation,
    • itching,
    • pain,
    • redness,
    • dryness,
    • stinging/burning,
    • discoloration,
    • rash,
    • swelling, and
    • lesions
  • sunburn,
  • acne, and
  • allergic dermatitis

What Are Possible Side Effects of Differin Gel?

Common side effects of Differin Gel include:

Skin redness, dryness, itching, scaling, mild burning, or worsening of acne may occur during the first 2-4 weeks of using Differin Gel 0.3%. These side effects usually decrease with continued use Differin Gel 0.3%. Tell your doctor if you have unlikely but serious side effects of Differin Gel 0.3% including:

  • very red or irritated skin,
  • an intense burning sensation,
  • eye redness and watering (conjunctivitis),
  • eyelid swelling, or
  • skin discoloration.

What Is Aklief?

Aklief (trifarotene) Cream is a retinoid indicated for the topical treatment of acne vulgaris in patients 9 years of age and older.

What Is Differin Gel?

Differin (adapalene) Gel 0.3% is a topical (applied to the skin) medication similar to vitamin A used to treat severe acne in people who are at least 12 years old. Differin Gel 0.3% is available in generic form.


Acne is the result of an allergy. See Answer

What Drugs Interact With Aklief?

Aklief may interact with other drugs. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use.

What Drugs Interact With Differin Gel?

Differin may interact with steroids or tetracycline antibiotics.

Differin may also interact with vitamin A, hormonal contraceptives, St. John's wort, and phenytoin.

How Should Aklief Be Taken?

The dose of Aklief Cream is a thin layer applied to the affected areas of the face and/or trunk once a day, in the evening, on clean and dry skin.

How Should Differin Gel Be Taken?

Differin Gel 0.3% should be applied in a thin film to the entire face and any other affected areas of the skin once daily in the evening, after washing gently with a non-medicated soap.


Skin Health: 15 Tips for Clear Skin See Slideshow

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Galderma. Aklief Product Information.


Galderma Laboratories. Differin Product Information.


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