How Retinol Works and Can Benefit All Skin Types
Michela Marra | Wednesday February 14th 2018
When we look at our reflection in our thirties, we start to notice our very first wrinkles, usually around the mouth or eyes. In some cases, besides fine lines, we start to notice spots or discoloration; our skin appears to have lost its turgidity and compactness. What exactly is happening? Nature is running its course, and these types of changes are perfectly normal. However, using a good anti-wrinkle cream and leading a lifestyle that will positively impact our skin is imperative. Among the variety of solutions available, you’ll come across creams and serums containing retinol.
What is retinol?
Quite popular in the ‘80s, this molecule is often also found in the latest generation of cosmetics. Retinol is vitamin A in its alcoholic form (not to be confused with retinoic acid which has medicinal properties and must be prescribed by a doctor). Why is vitamin A included in so many of these formulas? Because vitamin A is known to be one of the most potent anti-ageing vitamins ever (it can be paired with vitamin C to augment this effect). It eliminates dead skin cells and is extremely useful in fighting dark spots. Also, it leaves skin looking instantly brighter.
One of the most common critiques of the use of retinol was its tendency to provoke redness: many consider retinol too aggressive, especially for those who have sensitive skin. However, today cosmetics are safer because they include only a minimal concentration of retinol, between 0.1% and 1%, so even the most sensitive skin can tolerate it. Furthermore, in order to avoid any type of risk, most of today’s products are designed to release retinol gradually, making the products more tolerable yet ensuring excellent results all the same. If you have any doubts, perform a small patch test on your arm: if you do not experience redness after 24 hours it is safe to conclude that you can use the product and expect no problems.
When to avoid retinol
If you are planning to expose your skin to the sun for a prolonged period of time — whether in the mountains or by the sea — avoid using products that contain retinol, because it is photosensitive. If you want to continue a treatment and do not have sensitive skin, use night creams and serums and opt for sunblock with a high SPF during the day.
Would you like to try some creams or serums containing retinol? Here is a list of products we recommend.
Pure Retinol Intensive Revitalizing Mask Benefiance di Shiseido
This pure retinol-based, revitalizing face mask prevents and quickly reduces the appearance of wrinkles and helps correct skin lacking in elasticity.
Zelens Powert A Treatment Drops
This product contains a concentration of vitamin A and retinol, and has a smoothing effect to eliminate imperfections.
Miamo Longevity Plus Retinol Cream 1%
This anti-age night cream contains retinol in the form of microspheres: this prevents any possible degradation and allows for the retinol to be released gradually and evenly. It is ideal for normal and combination skin. Apply a thin, even amount of the product at night all over face and avoiding the eye area.
Peter Thomas Roth Retinol Fusion PM Siero notte antirughe
This product includes microcapsules of retinol with a loading level of 1.5%, which help exfoliate. Infused with vitamins C and E, this hydrating formula is suitable for all skin types.
Skinceuticals Retinol 0,3%
A regenerating night cream, this products has a pure retinol-based formula which is enhanced by a technology that captures and stabilizes the retinol in order to ensure its gradual and uniform release.