A magical potion that retains your youth by turning the clock in reverse for your skin – Retinol is all that and so much more! But even with the rising hype around the ingredient, many of us don’t exactly know how to incorporate it into our skincare routine or its effects on the skin. So here we got you a lowdown on retinol so you can finally decide if you want to add it to your skincare vanity or pass!
What is Retinol?
Retinol is a type of retinoid and a by-product of vitamin A. It is employed for anti-ageing and is found in an array of skincare products. Though many people think that retinol is an exfoliant, it’s actually an antioxidant. Once retinoids are converted to the active form, retinoic acid, they get absorbed into cells in and under your skin to impact how they behave. Using a well-formulated and stable product with retinol will visibly reduce the appearance of sun damage, pigmentation, fine lines, wrinkles, and large pores. It can stimulate the metabolism of skin cells and further collagen production. Retinol helps resurface the skin’s texture for a smoother, more even-toned look which is where its true magic lies!
Benefits of Retinol on skin
Reduces signs of ageing: Retinol accelerates skin cell regeneration which helps in giving the knocks of ageing a long wait. It helps in reducing fine lines and wrinkles thus revealing more youthful and glowing skin.
Improves skin tone & texture: Continued usage of retinol helps fade hyperpigmentation and makes your skin look smoother and gives it a healthy glow. This is because of the boost in collagen production that helps stimulate faster cell repair.
Reverses the effects of sun damage: The antioxidants in retinol help brighten dull and dark spots which also aids in treating sun damage.
Fights acne: Uh! Say acne healing and anti-ageing and most of us are sold! But really, retinol helps decrease the overactive functioning of oil glands and also unclogs pores. This clears your skin, makes pores look smaller, and prevents breakouts.
How to incorporate retinol into a skincare routine
There are very specific steps to be followed when incorporating retinol to your skincare routine. Step one is to do a patch test on your wrist/forearm. Let the product absorb and observe it for about 24 hours. Now if you get rashes/irritation - leave the venture here but if it feels fine it’s time for a second patch test. Apply the product near your jawline or neck and observe it for 24 hours again, if it again feels okay – it’s time. The Pond’s Age Miracle Wrinkle Corrector Night Cream has just the right concentrate of retinol that won’t irritate your skin. Infused with patented retinol- C, vitamin B3 and powerful bio-actives, this night cream helps reduce pigmentation and signs of ageing revealing brighter and youthful-looking skin.
Quantity: Start with a pea-sized quantity and lower concentration. Retinol is always ideal to use at bedtime. Expect a little bit of dryness the next morning. If you don’t experience dryness, you can increase the quantity of retinol being used. If you have sensitive skin, you may want to protect areas around the eye and mouth with some petroleum jelly.
Sandwich method: Retinol by itself if applied on the skin can cause some redness, irritation or in the worst of cases- a burn! Yes, so it's essential to take the right steps in order to juice out its benefits in the best way possible. A retinol sandwich is a quick method to soften the discomfort throughout the ‘routinisation’ (dry, flaky skin during the initial retinol usage) process. It requires sandwiching your retinol formulation between two layers of moisturisers. On your clean and damp skin, first, apply a layer of moisturiser and then apply retinol on top of it. After this, seal the product with a top layer of moisturiser. This will help prevent any irritation and possibly fight the dryness that is common during the initial retinol application phase. This method creates a barrier between your skin and retinol while still allowing you to reap its benefits. Use lightweight, non-comedogenic moisturisers like Simple Kind to Skin Hydrating Light Moisturiser if you have acne-prone skin and creamier, thicker lotion for dry skin.
Sunscreen: Never skip on sunscreen when using retinol as it can further sun exposure sometimes causing redness, pigmentation or chemical burns. So, include sunscreen by default in your morning routine.