You’ve likely passed by a bottle of retinol lining the shelves of your local drugstore, or even seen it on display at our clinic. Whatever the case be, we feel as though it’s best to teach you how to use retinol and when to use it.
The serum itself can seem pretty intimidating — there’s lots of talk about how many benefits it has and you might not know where to start. The long list of proven benefits from the retinoid includes improving skin texture, oil control, boosting collagen (through that, it is able to reduce fine lines and wrinkles) and also working to eliminate dark spots. Derived from Vitamin A, this holy grail product is none other than a powerhouse within the industry and is well worth incorporating into everyone’s daily routine.
So who can use it? Everyone is able to reap the rewards that retinol provides, though recommended use typically doesn’t begin until age 25. This is around the time that collagen production is at a decrease among women. For individuals with sensitive skin, it is recommended to ease into the product, as a small amount can go a long way. Pregnant women or women whom are breastfeeding should steer clear of retinol, as well as women with eczema or rosacea. Apart from that, its ability to be used on a wide variety of skin types and colours is astounding— another reason we love it so much.
Apply the serum, as you would with all serums, before your moisturizer but after washing and thoroughly drying your face as part of your nightly skin care routine. When you start applying retinol, begin using it only a couple times a week. Why? Sunlight deactivates retinol, so adding this step into your morning routine may not be so efficient.
Because retinol is a harsh product, the gradual application is important. Try and eliminate the use of harsh scrubs, beta hydroxy acids and any astringent or toner in order to not dry out your skin completely from the various combinations of products.
Keep in mind, if receiving a facial, chemical peel or even laser, you’ll have to stop using retinol for at least a week in advance in order for the procedure(s) to be performed safely. Not doing so can lead to reactions or irritation in the skin, which we definitely want to avoid!
There you have it — just about anything you’d need to know about retinol (for beginners.) We can’t say enough great things about this product; it’s our saving grace and once you get the hang of it, it should be yours too!