I love one liners and my current favourite skincare one is ‘retinol will save us all’. Well, it will preserve our skins anyway and keep it looking smooth and wrinkle free for a lot longer than if we didn’t include it in our skincare.
So, what is it?
Retinol is a Vitamin A derivative that enables skin cells to function normally, as well as boost the performance and appearance of the skin. It sloughs off dead skin cells quicker, improves the look and feel of scars, bolsters collagen in the deeper layers of skin, minimises the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines as well as tackles hyperpigmentation! Easy to see why it’s the wonder ingredient.
Why didn’t I know about these before?
Retinol has been around in skincare since the 1970’s, mainly used to deal with acne. But it can deal with so much more – conditions such as psoriasis and warts can be successfully treated as well as wrinkles and prematurely ageing skin.
Where can I get it?
It is now more widely available in over the counter preparations which can take between three and six months of use to see the effects on your skin. The GP can provide much stronger and fast acting types of retinol (Retinoids) for particular skin complaints like severe acne in which the difference in skin can be seen in as little as eight weeks.
How do I use?
Over the counter retinol products are easy to use – a pea sized amount on cleansed skin every other day until skin can tolerate more use. Don’t start using retinol if you have a big event coming up where you want to look your smartest as you may get some irritation – dryness, flakey, tingling, some redness perhaps but all these go within a couple of weeks as your skin gets used to it. For any severe irritations, stop use of the product. GP’s will always advise how to use the product if obtained via prescription.
Although you can use during the day, I prefer and advise to use retinol at night as it does make your skin photo sensitive. You must wear sunscreen of at least SPF30 to protect your delicate skin.
Show them to me!
The goods news is twofold – every single age group can use retinol AND they are safe for long term use in your skincare. I’ve compiled a pinterest board of retinol products to make it easy to see whats available for over the counter use. I’ve not tried them all mind, so can’t speak on the effectiveness of every single one, but it’s a good starting point if you are interested in including retinol in your arsenal. I will update regularly.