The Lowdown on Retinol
what is retinol?
Simply, retinol is any form of vitamin A derivative. It’s a potent antioxidant that aids your skin cells to turn over and for producing collagen to help you keep that plump, youthful skin!
when to use it
Start using retinol 1-2 times per week in the evening. It’s best to use it in the evening to prevent any sun damage to the new skin during the day time. However, still use SPF every morning because your skin may be more sensitive due to the cell turnover from the evening before.
When it comes to your evening skincare routine, it’s best to cleanse, tone and then go in with retinol. Most are serums which will help the retinol penetrate deep into your underlying skin. Moisturizers (generally the last step in skincare) sit on top of your skin, blocking the pathway and preventing the retinol from doing it’s job. That’s why it’s important to make sure your retinol comes right after the toner.
People do use moisturizers with retinol in it. Just remember it’s not going to be as strong. This could be a good option for slowly introducing it into your skincare routine or for someone with sensitive skin.
does it help clear acne?
Yes, it stops dead skin cells from clogging the pores. It really gets under the bottom layer of the skin and helps healthy skin cells regenerate whilst destroying the dead ones that cause inflammation and breakouts!
how is it anti-aging?
Retinol is best for preventing aging, not reversing it! So, it’s best to start using this product in your mid to late twenties before it’s too late! Getting rid of the dead skin cells is a way of exfoliating the skin to keep it looking youthful.
how to know it’s working?
Your skin may start peeling when you start using retinol… but that’s good because your skin is essentially shedding off the done and dusted! Be sure to replenish your skin with oils, such a rose-hip the following day to avoid having dry skin.
I’ve been using the Ordinary, Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion retinol since late November and I can honestly see a huge difference in my skin already! It looks more plump, hydrated and the fine-lines on the forehead have reduced significantly.
Because I have sensitive skin, I was very careful with introducing this product for the first 2-3 times of applying it. My cheeks are prone to inflammation (small red rosacea bumps) when my skin is irritated and I found that this retinol did just that. Since my first application, I avoid the cheeks and just apply it to the rest of my face. Which is fine with me, my cheeks are already quite plump ;)
What is your experience with retinol? Let me know in the comments! xx