Almost every skin expert will tell you, if you’re over 40 you should be using a retinol. A retinol is a derivative of vitamin A that speeds up cell turnover to reduce fine lines and wrinkles and even out the skin.
While your dermatologist can prescribe a power-punched retinoid (such as Retin-A), over-the-counter versions (such as our very own JF Aesthetic) are also available. While prescription-strength retinoids deliver results in as little as 4 weeks, they also tend to be more harsh, often resulting in dry, easily irritated skin. Non-prescriptions retinols, on the other hand, take up to three times longer to get results, but are significantly milder and more appropriate for intolerant skin.
5 Retinol Dos and Don’ts
Whether you go the prescription or non-prescription route, there are several points that will ensure your experience with retinol products is a good one:
1. Do Start Slow
Because retinols can irritate the skin, begin by using them every other night so your skin can adjust. Also, apply only a pea-sized amount. More does not equal better results in this case.
2. Do Use At Night
Because retinols can make your skin more sensitive to the sun, apply at night only.
3. Don't Forget Your Sunblock
Yes, your skin will be more sensitive to the sun, so now more than ever be sure to wear a daily SPF. Increased skin sensitivity also makes waxing a no-no.
4. Do Use a Good Moisturizer
Retinol acts to increase skin cell turnover, so your skin may dry out, flake off or peel. The key to comfort? Keep it moist!
5. Don't Use if You're Pregnant
Or breastfeeding, for that matter. Studies have demonstrated skeletal deformities in the offspring of pregnant rats who were treated with retinoids.