Retinol 101: What You Need To Know About The Anti-Aging Hero

The word Retinol is synonymous with the beauty world. I know you’ve seen it in drugstores, heard about it on TV, and listened to your favourite celeb gush about it every time they “re-discovers” skincare. The retinol hype is real—but it is also a tricky one. Do you really know what retinol does? Do you really know why you’re supposed to use it, or ro you even really know how to apply it?

The retinol hype is real—but it is also a tricky one

For starters, you can’t simply slap it on and call it a day, you have to build up a tolerance. Because it is one of the only proven ingredients to visibly reduce the appearance of ageing and it’s a skilful multi-tasker. It can increase cell turnover and stimulate collagen and elastin production. It can increase the appearance of firmness by plumping up fine lines and wrinkles. It can improve uneven skin tone, treat pigmentation and smooth the surface of skin. It can even help with cystic acne and blemishes. In short, it’ll help you’re experiencing that Benjamin Button effect. 

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When To Start Using Retinol? 

Your 20s is the best time to start using retinol—that, if you suffer from breakouts or pigmentation. It’s best to use retinol for 3 months, then takes a three month break. This is due to research that suggests cell turnover is no longer increased after 3 months of retinol usage.

It’s best to use retinol for 3 months, then takes a three month break

The Side Effects 

Retinols don’t work equally well on everyone. Avoid it if you suffer from rosacea, eczema, or psoriasis. It’s too powerful on skin that needs a gentle touch and can increase inflammation, dryness and sensitivity in already delicate complexions. Other than that, most people should be able to get on with it. But no need to worry, the side effects usually only last for a couple of weeks while the skin adjusts to the ingredient.

Not Just With The Wrinkles 

Sure, retinoids are the gold standard in wrinkle-preventing and line-smoothing treatments, but they’re also excellent at turning your face into a bright little marble. They’ll also help plump up your skin, clear and shrink pores, and fade dark spots and redness. Can I get a hell yeah?