Retinol face cream can be very effective when used correctly. The cream helps improve skin symptoms like sun spots and fine lines. Understanding how the ingredients work will help you not undermine retinol’s benefits or overtax your skin. Here’s how to choose the right retinol face cream:
What Is Retinol?
Retinol, vitamin A, and tretinoin are somehow connected, but these three ingredients are not the same. Retinol is an over-the-counter version of tretinoin. Tretinoin is a vitamin A prescription derivative.
For best results, apply retinol at night. Retinol is great at:
• Reversing sun damage
• Treatment of acne
• Decreasing fine lines
• Improving skin discoloration
• Decreasing inflammation caused by rosacea
• Tightening pores
• Regenerating collagen and strengthening your skin
• Clearing out blackheads and blocked pores for those experiencing breakouts
What to Look for When Choosing Retinol Cream for the Face
Retinal is a skincare ingredient that’s most challenging to work with because of its well-known instability. It’s known not to work well with most ingredients. Only an experienced formulator can make retinol effective.
Retinol products of the best quality can be expensive to formulate. This causes some brands to take shortcuts. Companies may not know how to stabilize the ingredient. Here’s what to consider when selecting a retinol product:
Confirm That the Retinol Is Stable
Understanding the aspect of stabilization will help you find the right retinol product for your face. Water-based retinol products should be encapsulated in a membrane, shell, or liposome.
Microencapsulation refers to the process of protecting the delicate active agents in little carriers. The process helps to stabilize and control how they are released. Shells commonly used include:
• Polysaccharides (cyclodextrins, cellulose, gums, and starches)
• Lipids (waxes and oils)
• Proteins (soy proteins and gelatin)
Liposomes resemble membranes and are particles in which retinol, the active ingredient, is incorporated. Retinol mixed with silicone and oil is less costly due to the less advanced delivery system. They can be effective if you are a person who loves to use silicones or oils on your skin.
Avoid these if you are prone to breakouts and clogged pores. Knowing how the product is stabilized will help determine if it’s effective.
Consider Your Skin Type
Thinner formulations like a gel or fluid are ideal for those with oily or acne-prone skin. Such formulations soak easily into the skin without feeling heavy. Oily skin tolerates retinol better since it leaves the skin feeling drier than usual.
For those with acne-prone skin, it may cause purging at first when you apply it. The effect should settle down soon. Remember to apply sunscreen if you use retinol frequently.
For sensitive/normal skin, use retinol which contains hyaluronic acid. Don’t add several active products to your face products at once. Retinal is an active ingredient that should not be used with vitamin C.
For those with dry skin, use retinol as the moisturizing base. The moisturizer needs to contain nourishing ingredients like Omega or Vitamin E.
Know the Meaning of Retinol Percentage
Retinol products have varying levels of strength, the most common being 0.25%, 0.3%, 0.5%, and 1%. Some brands don’t disclose this information. Mostly physician-dispensed and medical-grade companies are the ones that disclose the concentration.
Buy a product that has specified the percentage. Increased concentration means increased potency. Start with the lowest dose and gradually increase it if you have sensitive skin.
Even products with a concentration of 0.5% can make the skin look better and improve texture and tone. Beginners can start with 0.25-1% retinol and wait to see the results.
Choose Retinol in Non-transparent Packaging
Retinol deactivates fast when exposed to light because it is delicate even when encapsulated. Search for retinol packed in opaque packaging. If there is a product packed in a clear bottle that doesn’t have a box, it may have been on the shelf for months.
The light can render the product ineffective. You need to choose retinol in opaque packaging. Keep the bottle in an area that’s free of heat. Heat can make the product ineffective, like light.
Buy Retinol Face Cream From a Reputable Company
Purchase retinol face cream from a well-known company. Their products need to have a high success rate among consumers. Buy retinol suitable for your skin type to get the best result.