What is retinol?
Retinol is a topical derivative of vitamin A that exfoliates the skin, regenerates cell production, and boosts collagen over a matter of hours. Boasting both anti-ageing and acne-reducing superpowers, this multi-tasking saviour will also help your skin to better absorb any other products you apply afterwards (meaning more bang for your buck with follow-up serums, night creams or overnight masks). Nice one, retinol.
Why should I use it?
If tackling acne and scarring is high on your skincare agenda, retinol speeds up cell turnover in order to help heal the skin, while exfoliating the outer layers, preventing pores from clogging and reducing breakouts. Anti-ageing more of an issue? Retinol helps with that, too – it stimulates collagen and blood vessel production, helping to reduce fine lines, wrinkles and pigmentation spots.
How do I use it?
As sunlight is to retinol what kryptonite is to Superman, retinol should only be used during your night-time routine, a couple of times a week (increasing to every other day, if needed, once acclimatised). Start by applying a pea-size amount all over the face, followed by a nourishing moisturiser. Lastly, remember to use an SPF come morning as retinol can harshen the impact of UV on your skin. The effects of retinol build over time and take roughly three months to work, so keep the faith if you don’t notice results straight away.