Last reviewed on RxList: 1/25/2021
Renova Side Effects Center

What Is Renova?

Renova (tretinoin cream) is a topical (applied to the skin) form of vitamin A used to reduce the appearance of fine wrinkles and mottled skin discoloration, and to make rough facial skin feel smoother. Renova is available in generic form.

What Are Side Effects of Renova?

Common side effects of Renova include a brief sensation of warmth, stinging, or tingling immediately after applying the medication. Skin redness, dryness, itching, scaling, mild burning, swelling, peeling, irritation, discoloration, or worsening of acne may occur during the first 2-4 weeks of using Renova. These effects usually decrease with continued use of Renova. Tell your doctor if you have serious side effects of Renova including:

  • blistering,
  • crusting,
  • severe burning or swelling of the skin,
  • eye redness and watering (conjunctivitis),
  • eyelid swelling, or
  • darkening or lightening of skin color.

Dosage for Renova

Renova should be applied to the face once a day in the evening, using only a pea-sized amount to cover the entire affected area lightly. Patients should wash their face with soap, then dry, and wait 20 to 30 minutes before applying Renova. Hands should be washed immediately after.

What Drugs, Substances, or Supplements Interact with Renova?

Renova may interact with diuretics (water pills), tetracycline, antibiotics, sulfa drugs, chlorpromazine, prochlorperazine, fluphenazine, promethazine, perphenazine, and others. Tell your doctor all medications you are taking.

Renova During Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

Remova is not recommended for use during pregnancy. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor. It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding.

Additional Information

Our Renova (tretinoin cream) Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.


Bar soap and water are fine for cleansing the face if you have sensitive or dry skin. See Answer
Renova Consumer Information

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Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • severe burning, stinging, or irritation of treated skin;
  • severe skin dryness; or
  • severe redness, swelling, blistering, peeling, or crusting.

Your skin may be more sensitive to weather extremes such as cold and wind while using this medicine.

Common side effects may include:

  • skin pain, redness, burning, itching, or irritation;
  • sore throat;
  • mild warmth or stinging where the medicine was applied; or
  • changes in color of treated skin.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Renova (Tretinoin Emollient Cream 0.05%)


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Renova Professional Information


(See WARNINGS and PRECAUTIONS sections.)

In double-blind, vehicle-controlled studies involving 179 patients who applied RENOVA (tretinoin emollient cream 0.05%) 0.05% to their face, adverse reactions associated with the use of RENOVA (tretinoin emollient cream 0.05%) 0.05% were limited primarily to the skin. During these trials, 4% of patients had to discontinue use of RENOVA (tretinoin emollient cream 0.05%) 0.05% because of adverse reactions. These discontinuations were due to skin irritation or related cutaneous adverse reactions.

Local reactions such as peeling, dry skin, burning, stinging, erythema, and pruritus were reported by almost all subjects during therapy with RENOVA (tretinoin emollient cream 0.05%) 0.05%. These signs and symptoms were usually of mild to moderate severity and generally occurred early in therapy. In most patients the dryness, peeling, and redness recurred after an initial (24 week) decline.

In spontaneous post-marketing adverse event reporting for RENOVA (tretinoin emollient cream 0.05%) 0.05%, approximately 2% of those were for skin hypo- or hyperpigmentation. Other spontaneously reported adverse events predominantly appear to be local reactions similar to those seen in clinical trials.

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Renova (Tretinoin Emollient Cream 0.05%)

© Renova Patient Information is supplied by Cerner Multum, Inc. and Renova Consumer information is supplied by First Databank, Inc., used under license and subject to their respective copyrights.

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