You can now get prescription-strength acne treatments to your door — no derm visit necessary

Meet Nurx, the brand making healthcare accessible for all.

ByNatalie Gale
Originally Published: 
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Visiting the dermatologist is great for yearly checkups or for getting treatment for an unexpected skin concern. But what it’s not so great for is waiting weeks for a standard prescription — and that’s where Nurx comes in. Nurx believes healthcare should be affordable, accessible, and convenient. The telehealth service provides common health concerns, like birth control and acne treatments, with easy solutions. And now, Nurx can give you access to tretinoin, a dermatologist-recommended form of vitamin A that’s typically prescribed to treat acne — but without a trip to the deramtologist.

What is Nurx?

Nurx is an online telehealth service on a mission to make healthcare easier to access. They aim to help anyone — regardless of their schedule or bank account — get medication that they need quickly, compassionately, and without hassle — and you don’t necessarily need insurance, either.

Nurx helps users access medications that traditionally come with a lot of red tape, like booking a doctor’s appointment far in advance, or finding out what your insurance covers and what they don’t. In other words, they take the stress out of caring for yourself. All users have to do is request a prescription online (or get guidance from their medical team). A Nurx provider in your state will then evaluate your request and write a prescription that’ll then be delivered discreetly right to your home.

Nurx is popular for accessing medications like birth control pills or emergency contraception, as well as treatments for skin concerns like melasma, rosacea, and acne. They have both generic and name-brand medications available, and most are free with insurance — or affordable even without. Their most popular acne treatments include spironolactone, clindamycin, and tretinoin.

Nurx’s Tretinoin cream

Tretinion is the active ingredient most commonly prescribed by dermatologists to treat acne. It’s the strongest of the retinoids, which are vitamin A derivatives — other retinoids include retinol and adapalene. Tretinoin works by promoting skin cell turnover, which is why it’s super effective at decongesting pores to reduce the severity of acne. It’s also great at decreasing unwanted hyperpigmentation and improving collagen synthesis, which is why many folks use it to help improve their skin’s texture and tone.

As the most potent retinoid, tretinoin can at first cause irritation or purging, which is when your skin brings sebum and dead skin cells to the surface as a reaction to encountering a product that speeds up turnover. “Initially, expect redness, peeling, and flaking of your skin,” Dr. Alexis Parcells previously told Elite Daily. For this reason, most doctors suggest using tretinoin just two or three times a week at first, or applying the cream over a thin layer of moisturizer for added protection.

Many providers also suggest starting on 0.025% strength tretinoin. Nurx also offers 0.05% and 0.1% strength, so if you’re not sure which one is right for you, Nurx’s medical providers will help you figure it out.

If you’re trying out tretinoin to reduce the appearance of unwanted discoloration or fine lines, or if you’re not using health insurance, Nurx’s tretinoin costs $30 per month, paid as $90 for a three-month supply. And if you’re using insurance to try tretinoin as an acne solution, it might cost you nothing.

Tretinoin cream 0.1%

Nurx’s star product, their Tretinoin Cream 0.1%, contains the highest available concentration of tretinoin. It’s one of the most powerful and effective skin treatments available. Nurx’s tretinoin costs $90 for one tube without insurance, and the tube will last you at least three months but likely much longer — tretinoin cream typically expires after two years. And if 0.1% is too potent for you, Nurx’s team of dermatology experts will help you find the strength that’s right for you — either 0.05% or 0.025%.