What it does: Retinol is the term used for the entire vitamin A molecule. Applied to skin, retinol is a beneficial cell-communicating ingredient and an antioxidant.
Simply put, it helps skin cells create better, healthier skin cells and increases the amount of skin-support substances. Retinol has been shown to increase the skin's collagen production and glycosaminoglycan content,
resulting in firmer skin with an improved texture and enhanced barrier function. In skin-care products, it is found in the form of retinol, retinyl palmitate, and retinylaldehyde.
When it comes to reversing signs of aging, retinol is often cited as the go-to ingredient of choice, but what exactly is it?
Retinol is a vitamin A by-product that unclogs pores, boosts collagen to reduce fine lines, and speeds cell turnover, evening out discolouration and smoothing the skin - sometimes with results in as little as four weeks.
So here are the 5 reasons why you should be using retinol...
1. Retinol can help prevent signs of premature aging. Early use of products will help to combat fine lines before they become noticeable.
Recommendation: Dr. Dennis Gross Ferulic Acid + Retinol Brightening Solution
"Retinol is one of the top anti-agers. By adding ferulic acid in my formula, I have managed to make retinol work even better. Retinol firms the skin,
adds radiance and luminosity and gives skin a younger appearance. Ferulic acid allows the retinol to work even deeper into the skin while promoting collagen production (which counters wrinkles and fine lines).
Together it is an incredible combination." ~Dr. Dennis Gross
2. Retinol improves more than just wrinkles. It also improves skin tone, signs of sun damage and pore size.
Recommendation: Peter Thomas Roth Retinol Fusion PM, It's gentle but extremely effective in stimulating cell turnover and evening out skin tone as well as texture.
In this lightweight cream the retinol is blended with Vitamin C and Vitamin E so that it is moisturizing and plumping as well—it's an amazing multitasking night treatment!
3. Retinol products can be safely used on sunny days.
You don't have to forgo retinol's anti-aging benefits during daytime hours. A formula containing SPF 30 will provide adequate protection from the sun's rays.
Recommendation: Peter Thomas Roth 'Retinol Fusion AM' Moisturizer SPF 30
4. Retinol tackles acne.
Retinol's exfoliating benefits can help treat acne. That's because dead skin cells can clog pores and contribute to acne. By getting rid of dead skin cells, retinol improves and prevents breakouts.
Recommendation: MD Formulations Vit-A-Plus Clearing Complex Masque
5. Retinol can be part of regimen regardless of your skin type or age.
Slowly build up your tolerance by applying a product containing retinol every other day. Once your skin adjusts to this effective ingredient, you'll be able to incorporate it into a daily skincare regimen.
Recommendation: Skin Medica Tri-Retinol Complex, contains three forms of Vitamin A in a micro-particle delivery system Features a gradual release formulation to slowly impart vitamin A to lessen irritation.