A Quick Retinol Rundown

Retinol, most commonly known as Vitamin A or sometimes retinoid, is a powerful substance that is found in many skincare products. So what’s the difference between Retinol and Retinoid? Well retinol can be found in over-the-counter skincare products, whereas retinoids can only prescribed by a a dermatologist as these products (like Retin-A) are a lot more potent than over-the-counter creams and gels.

There are multiple retinol-based products – gels for normal and sensitive skin, creams for dry skin, and facial peels for oily skin. So what does retinol do exactly? Here is a breakdown:

Anti-Aging – It stimulates the growth of fibroblasts, encouraging collagen production to help plump up your skin, reducing the appearance of wrinkles and thin-looking skin. It thickens the epidermal layer and strengthens its structure to prevent future wrinkles from ever forming.

Acne – Retinol prevents the accumulation of dead cells that can clog your pores, leading to blackheads and pimples. It’s also a good way to treat acne scars as it normalizes pigmentation on your skin. How you ask? Retinol can exfoliate your skin layer by peeling off the duller, topmost layer and revealing the younger layer underneath.

Sun Damage – Protects your skin’s collagen after you get exposed to UV rays. Yes, sun exposure can break your collagen down, that’s why those who are always exposed to the sun have more prominent wrinkles and crepey skin. If your collagen is protected, your are less likely to have redness and sun sensitivity that can lead to severe cell damage and uneven skin tone.

Before using retinol products, please consult your dermatologist. There are many over-the-counter products that may be the right for you. However, if your dermatologist determines that you may need a stronger product, then he or she can give you a proper prescription for the right retinoid product.

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