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How Can I Make Retinol Work More Effectively?

Posted by Ellie Swain on Aug 5th 2022

How Can I Make Retinol Work More Effectively?

Retinol is hailed as the go-to beauty ingredient for beautiful, smooth, clear skin. If you’re already investing your time and money into retinol, you’ll want to ensure that you’re doing everything right for the best results.

There are several steps you can follow to ensure you’re using retinol the right way. Keep reading.

Apply to Dry Skin

Most of us are used to applying products straight after we’ve washed our faces for bedtime. However, you shouldn’t do this with retinol. If you apply retinol within 20 minutes or so of cleansing your face, you may experience adverse side effects like dryness, redness, and stinging.

To optimize your retinol use, apply it when your skin is dry.

Choose High-Quality Products

It almost goes without saying, but you should always use high-quality retinol products. The ingredient is very powerful, and you don’t want to apply untrustworthy products to your skin that either won’t work or will damage it.

Look for formulas with high concentrations of active ingredients. You should also seek solutions that are designed to deliver a retinoid and avoid products that don’t make much sense, like sunscreens containing retinol.

The Revision Retinol Complete 0.5 is an award-winning, innovative facial serum to brighten and smooth the skin. It’s packed with the power of five antioxidants and a blend of botanical extracts that enhance the effectiveness of Retinol while delivering long-term hydration.

Start Slow

It may be tempting to apply a strong retinol product daily in the hope that you’ll see results quicker. But higher doses and daily application are a risky way to start your retinol regimen. More isn’t always better.

If you’re new to this potent ingredient, start with a gentle formula and slowly build your way up to a prescription retinoid like Retin-A.

Start by using a pea-sized amount of retinol every third day for a week. Then up the dosage to every other day for a week, then two days in a row and skip a day before using nightly.

Apply Sunscreen

As retinol is so potent, it can make your skin extremely sensitive. It’s essential to use sunscreen during the day during your retinol regime. If you skip it, you’re not only putting the retinol at a disadvantage but could also damage your skin.

Make sure you apply sunscreen to your face daily to avoid this – even on cold or overcast days. The Replenix Hydrating Oil-Free Facial sunscreen SPF 50 is a great option. This mineral sunscreen brightens discolored skin for a luminous glow in a sheer formula that’s ideal for acne-prone and sensitive skin types.

Pair with the Right Products

Incorporating a moisturizer or serum containing ingredients like ceramides and lipids into your skincare routine can help calm your skin as it acclimates to retinol.

Try buffering retinol. This involves mixing the ingredient with moisturizer to prevent and reduce irritation and help the skin adjust. Layering your retinol on top of a serum, like hyaluronic acid, is a great idea too, and we know just the product to recommend.

The PCA Skin Hyaluronic Acid Boosting Serum contains a smoothing blend of ingredients to deliver deep, long-lasting hydration to thirsty skin.

Use at Night

Retinoids break down easily when they’re exposed to sunlight. As such, it’s best to apply retinol at night as the skin repairs itself. Generally, anti-aging ingredients are more effective when used before bedtime, anyway.

Retinoic acid products like retinol are delicate compounds that can easily break down and are best used in the PM when you’re tucked up in bed.

Applying retinol at night instead of in the morning can also help prevent sunburns. If you use retinol during the day, your skin is sensitive and more prone to burning.

Avoid Irritating Products

Retinols can aggravate your skin, so avoid using other ingredients that could worsen or trigger this. Think alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) or benzoyl peroxide that could over-dry the skin.

AHAs are water-soluble while retinol is fat-soluble, so when used together, they can block each other’s function, making applications useless.

Be Patient

Using retinol isn’t going to transform your skin overnight. Depending on the type of retinoid you use, the skin issue you’re treating, and the condition of your skin, it could take up to six to eight weeks to notice any significant changes to your complexion.

Keep following your retinol regimen, even if you’re not seeing any results in the beginning and even if it seems to worsen your skin in the first month or so – this is called purging, and it will get better.

Learn all about purging here .