Achieving Clear and Glowing Skin with Retinol: Tips and Tricks

Kate Hayhurst

The skincare industry is on the rise and is only getting bigger! With major brands like ‘The Ordinary’ and ‘Cera Ve’ taking over the beauty and pharmacy chain, the aim to have clear, glowing skin is taking a front in beauty ideals. However, above all, Retinol is becoming particularly popular in the skincare sector. Retinol has been proven to have many benefits when implemented into our skincare routine. However, it is frequently misapplied, poorly understood, and hastily added to a skincare routine without the user knowing its actual purposes or the type of skin it targets. It is, therefore, essential to break down this magic ingredient to successfully implement it into our lives and for future use. 

What is retinol? 

Retinol is a form of vitamin A regularly added to creams and serums in tiny doses. It can also be sold as a singular product which isn’t added to any other product. We all need Vitamin A because of its ability to help speed up healing, prevent breakouts and support the skin’s immune system. Vitamin A also promotes natural moisturising, which aids in hydrating the skin effectively, giving it a radiant glow. 

the best time to begin to use Retinol is in your twenties

What are the benefits?

The particular benefits of Retinol are extensive – the list goes on and on! A predominant beauty standard is keeping our skin as young-looking and bright as possible, which is precisely what Retinol targets. By exfoliating the skin and increasing collagen production, this product improves aging by reducing the appearance of wrinkles and adding plumpness and brightness to the skin. It achieves this by pushing away the acne and dull skin to bring back the glowing and supportive skin we all desire. Whilst this product aids cosmetically in appearance, it aids medically by helping the skin speed up its cycle of removing dead skin cells and spots. There are many different levels of retinoids in products such as isotretinoin and tretinoin, which are over-the-counter prescriptions dealing with high levels of retinoids and anti-ageing. However, Retinol is much lower in concentration and is, therefore, much less irritating than the prescribed options. 

When is the best time to use it? 

Many experts say the best time to begin to use Retinol is in your twenties or when you start to see signs of ageing. However, our skin is different, so everyone will have times when it is best to start. For example, if you are a teenager struggling with acne, it may be the right time to incorporate the product into your routine. A general message though, is to begin to use it in your twenties, specifically for preventative measures for aging such as wrinkles and discolouration. The primary way is to use a cleanser first, retinol and other products and then finish with a moisturiser. It is never too late to start using it, though, with some people starting to use it in their forties and fifties when the signs have already occurred. 

using too much of it initially may lead to adverse effects

How often should I use it? 

When implementing skin care products into your routine, the best way to add Retinol into your day is gradually. It has been advised to begin by using it every other day for a few weeks, and if there are no signs of irritation, it can be used every day. It’s essential to remember that even though Retinol has a low concentration, it can still be a potent product. Using too much of it initially may lead to adverse effects or learning that it’s too strong for your skin. However, using it gradually, allows your skin to adapt and use the product to its advantage. When first using the product, it is expected to have some side effects, such as mild irritation and dryness. Still, if the symptoms are more extreme, like redness or burning sensations, it is recommended to avoid using it.  Different products will be suited to different skins. Baring this in mind, here are some of my recommendations and personal favourites for implementing Retinol into your routine. 

My Recommendations:

The Ordinary- Retinol 1% in Squalene 

As an ordinary skincare lover, using this product has always been my go-to. As a high-strength serum, this product sells itself explicitly as a product towards signs of aging. At only £8.50, it is an easy, accessible way to start or develop your skincare routine, and it goes without saying the design is clean, functional and simplistic, which is sometimes what we need in this industry.


La Roche-Posay- Redermic Anti-Wrinkle 

If you want something to apply for the evening, this is definitely the product! Despite being on the upper end of the price scale, this product has been proven effective by being recommended by 9/10 dermatologists. In addition, it has been tailored to work on sensitive skin with no preservatives or fragrances, so it is suitable for a wide range of skin types. 


Dr Sam’s Flawless Nightly Eye 2% Retinol serum

As a cruelty-free and vegan product, this product specifically targets dark circles and fine lines around the eyes. Retinol can be quite a strong product for the skin, particularly around the eye area, so this product has been made explicitly without irritating the most delicate skin areas. This eye cream also has niacinamide and Vitamin C, so there are many benefits to using this cream!


Drunk Elephant A-Gloei ™ Maretinol Oil 

Any girl who is a lover of Drunk Elephant will instantly love this product. This skin-smoothing treatment aids in healing sun damage by locking in moisture, restoring a healthy glow, and bringing it back to its healthiest state. This product is made with Marula oil to gently deliver Retinol to the skin, reducing the chance of redness and irritation. 

Retinol is rapidly taking the skincare world by storm so now you’re up to date with what it’s all about – head out and try it now!

Kate Hayhurst

Featured image courtesy of Kimia Zarifi via Unsplash. Image license found here. No changes were made to this image. 

In article image 1 courtesy of @theordinary via No changes were made to this image. 

In article image 2 courtesy of @larocheposay via No changes were made to this image. 

In article image 3 courtesy of @drunkelephant via No changes were made to this image. 

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