What is retinol?
Can it really change the life of your skin?
These are questions you may have found yourself asking ever since retinol was established as a star ingredient and began to appear in a plethora of skincare products. Skincare and beauty trends rise quickly and it can be difficult to keep up with them, let alone understand why these trends arise in the first place. What’s so special about them?
As it turns out, I was curious about this myself. Hence, I took the liberty of researching retinol and its effect on the health and appearance of your skin. What I found simply worked to legitimize and emphasize the hype around retinol as an imperative skincare ingredient. Retinol truly is the secret ingredient to smooth skin, and here’s why:
Retinol falls under the umbrella compound known as ‘retinoid.’ Retinoids are chemical variations of vitamin A that are meant for topical application. Retinoic acid is another type of retinoid, though it is typically only available in prescription products, as it contains a stronger dosage than retinol formulas. This means that retinol is softer on your skin, while still offering the same benefits and results. As noted on allure.com, associate professor of dermatology Dana Sachs believes that “retinol is the only derivative of vitamin A worth using.” Seeing as retinol is more suitable for sensitive skin than other retinoids, it becomes a more universal product, therein granting it the superior skincare status that it has come to claim today.
Like any coveted skincare product, retinol offers a surplus of benefits for your skin. Among these include retinol’s anti-aging, color correcting, and acne-fighting properties. Together, these benefits all work towards improving the health of your skin and smoothing out its overall appearance.
Retinol’s anti-aging properties are due to its impact on collagen production. Retinol increases the amount of collagen your body produces, meaning that it promotes the elasticity of your skin. This then works to decrease the visibility of fine lines and wrinkles on your skin. Therein, skin appears younger, softer, and less susceptible to the effects of aging.
Retinol is color correcting in the sense that it combats hyperpigmentation. Along with collagen production, retinol stimulates blood vessel production. This helps to reduce the look and frequency of patching on your skin, thus improving the coloring and tone of your skin.
As a result of these benefits, retinol becomes acne-fighting as well. Seeing as retinol improves the health of your skin, it then works to prevent the build-up of impurities that cause acne and other similar skin conditions. In other words, retinol smooths your skin and simultaneously treats and prevents acne.
While retinol can appear in cream-based products, serums may be the more popular approach. Serums offer an easy application, as you simply massage it into your skin. Not only does this soak the product into your skin and boost its effects, but it also allows for a calming face massage with every application! What’s not to love about that? Retinol serums can be used daily, although it is advised一 as is the case with any new skincare product you use一 that you start off with once a day application (we recommend nightly usage). This gives your skin a chance to get used to the product, so as to better serve its beneficial impacts. As your skin adapts, your application can be increased as you see fit.
Paradox’s top recommendation for a retinol product is our very own Botanical Retinol Serum (pictured above). This retinol serum combines the discussed benefits of retinol with the soothing benefits of fermented green tea, making it a smoothing super-product for your skin!
Now that you know and understand the numerous benefits of retinol, you’re ready to add retinol to your skincare routine一 I know I will be!
We love hearing from our #paradoxcommunity, so feel free to share your favorite skincare ingredients in the comments below! For more content like this- and for more information on our products- be sure to follow us on Instagram @paradox. For similar articles, check out: The Power of Hydrocolloid (here) and The Benefits of Face Rollers (here).