Here's What You Need to Know About Retinol | Harpers Bazaar
When it comes to skincare, the market is more saturated than ever. There are, quite literally, hundreds of serums, eye creams, spot treatments and sleep masks to choose from—all of them promising to wind back the clock. And if that wasn't enough, once you've settled on a type of product, consumers are faced with a new question: which active ingredient should I opt for? If you're new to the world of actives, retinol is a good place to start.
What Is Retinol?
As Kaye Scott, Co-Director, at The Clinic in Sydney explains, retinol is a form of vitamin A: "It promotes skin renewal and enhances collagen production, which starts to decline in your 30s." In other words, it reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. "Retinol can also reverse some of the side effects of sun damage," Scott explains.
What Does Retinol Do For Skin?
As mentioned above, by stimulating the production of new skin cells, retinol is a powerful anti-ageing ingredient. "It also helps to fade dark spots resulting from photo-ageing, hyperpigmentation, hormonal changes and blemish scars," Scott continues, "and it can be used to treat acne."
Who Should Use Retinol-Based Products?
Most people can introduce some form of retinol into their skincare regime. It's particularly useful for anyone with acne, acne scarring, dark spots, pigmentation or skin discolouration.
Who Shouldn't Use Retinol-Based Products?
A word of warning: being an active ingredient, some people will need to approach with caution. "Anyone who is pregnant or breastfeeding, those on prescription medication and those who have allergies or sensitive skin should consult a doctor first," warns Scott.
What Is The Best Way To Introduce Retinol Into Your SkinCare Routine?
At The Clinic, Scott says clients usually start with a cream or serum for face and/or eyes. As far as application is concerned, if you go too hard too fast, retinol can irritate skin. "We recommend introducing it on a 321 basis," Scott says. That means "every 3rd day for a week, every 2nd day for a week and then every day as part of your night time skin regime."
What Are The Best Retinol Creams And Serums?
If you do decide to go down the retinol route, there are a lot of products to choose from. As far as must-haves go Scott recommends the Cosmedix range: Cosmedix Serum 16 ($132), Cosmedix Serum 24 ($155), Cosmedix X Cell + ($132) and Cosmedix Eye Doctor ($220).
Note these are potent formulations and some require a consultation prior to purchase. Book a FaceTime Consultation with Kaye Scott today.
Words by Erin Cook at Harpers Bazaar