The Science Behind Retinol
When it comes to skincare, retinol has been hailed as a holy-grail for anti-aging. Retinol, to put it simply, is a derivative of Vitamin A that can often be found in most serums, creams and other skincare products.
Let’s take a deeper look at the science behind retinol and how to incorporate it into your routine for more youthful, radiant-looking skin.
What is Retinol?
You may have heard of Retinol and Retinoid, and wondered what the difference is between the two. These two anti-aging ingredients aren’t too different as retinol is actually a type of retinoid. However, retinoid is often more powerful and is usually prescribed, while retinol is available for over-the-counter purchases.
Retinol, as stated earlier, is a form of Vitamin A and is a powerful antioxidant that can help protect the skin from free radicals and oxidative stress. Retinol is also heavily regarded for its ability to improve the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and uneven skin tone.
How Does Retinol Work?
Retinol works by stimulating the skin's collagen production, increasing the cell turnover. Collagen is the protein that helps give your skin its elasticity and firmness, and as we continue to age, our bodies will slowly produce less of it. Using retinol can boost your collagen, and in turn improve any fine lines as well as improve skin texture and tone.
We want to preface that, because cell turnover has increased, your skin is likely to experience a phenomenon called “purging”. When skin cell turnover increases, the skin begins to speed up its shedding process as well, resulting in purging. This is common and can be experienced by anyone. Dermatologists say that purging should cease around 4-6 weeks after starting, however if your purge lasts longer than normal, please consult your dermatologist.
How to Use Retinol in Your Skincare Routine
There are a few things to keep in mind when beginning to incorporate Retinol into your routine. First, we strongly recommend that you slowly introduce your skin to retinol. This ingredient can be irritating to the skin if used too frequently or at too high of a concentration. This can eventually lead to damaged skin. So begin your retinol journey by applying the product once or twice a week, and gradually increase the frequency over time as your skin adjusts.
It’s also important to make sure that you use retinol at night. Retinol can leave your skin feeling more sensitive to the sun so it’s important to apply sunscreen to your face and neck during the day to protect your skin from UV damage.
Lastly, just like with any other skincare product, patience is key. It may take several weeks or months to see full benefits of using retinol in your skin care routine. Be consistent with it, and you’ll notice a noticeable improvement in the health and appearance of your skin.