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Retinol 101 - A beginners Guide
Today, we are overwhelmed with beauty information. From Instagram and pages of magazines to influencers and online forums - it can be hard to cut through the noise and decide what is right for you. However, there is one ingredient that is universally accepted as a one-of-kind miracle: retinol. From how to slot Retinol into your routine to how you can get maximums results, here’s our guide to all things retinol.
What is Retinol?
Retinol is a topical form of vitamin A that promotes skin cell turnover whilst also enhancing the production of collagen. It’s a hero ingredient for smoothing skin. Available in a variety of formulas from creams to serums and oils as well as a range of concentrations retinol is a skilled multitasker. It promises visible anti-aging benefits as well as boosting elastin production, improves uneven skin tone as well as firming the skin's surface, and diminishing the look of fine lines and wrinkles. This has led to retinol being used for treating everything from signs of aging, cystic acne, and pigmentation. It’s one of the most celebrated skincare ingredients.
"Retinol can be a confusing ingredient. Once you find the right product, formulation mix, and the balance for your skin, it's the best thing you can do fo your skin. It is like drinking 3 liters of water every day. Your skin will look luminous, toned, and achieve a level of clarity that no other product can deliver." Fatma Shaheen
Retinol promotes healing and cellular repairs on a very precise, microscopic scale. It works deep below the skin at the cellular level to encourage turnover to unveil fresher, brighter complexion. It essentially resurfaces the skin. Retinol communicates with skin cells to motivate them to renew faster than usual which in turn helps to soften out wrinkles, treat sun-damaged skin as well as treating high color and pigmentation. Retinol really is an all-round hard worker!
Types of Retinol
In order to get the most out of your retinol, it’s worth considering which type might work best for you. Although available in various different textures from oil to cream, the main important point of difference within each Retinol is the concentration. Tretinoin is the strongest of the retinol family and is a prescription level product used to fight acne as well as signs of aging. Other types of retinol from the weakest to strongest are retinol esters such as retinyl palmitate, retinol, and retinaldehyde.
Where to begin?
Retinol has a bit of a reputation for being harsh on your skin. Sure, you can expect some peeling, dryness, and redness but this side effect is a result of the retinol doing its job and turning over new skin cells.
With this in mind, start with the lower concentrations of retinol and build your way up to the stronger percentages - this way your skin will get used to the impact. You can also use retinol products which have the benefits of moisturizing ingredients, this will work with the retinol to prep the skin whilst keeping it hydrated to reduce signs of irritation. The Skin DesignLondon Retinol Fresh Skin Treatment features a whole host of regenerating retinal ingredients whilst cleverly combining them with hydrating, irritation reducing additions such as aloe vera and rosehip to soothe the skin. It’s a winning combination for a one-stop-shop to optimum skin health.
RETINOL CREME - a good product for beginners and also can be used to maintain skin.
RETEXTURING SERUM - Good for experienced retinol users. Daily use recommended. If you are a beginner you can slowly introduce Retexturing serum into your routine an gradually build to daily. So the first two weeks use every 3 days, 3rd week, every other day and then 5th week daily. Always wear sunscreen and combine it with an antioxidant.