One of the ingredients everyone should incorporate in their skincare routine is Retinoids. They are derivates of Vitamin A and include Retin-A, Renova (tretinoin) Retinoic acid, Retinol, Retinyl linoleate, Retinyl palmitate and Tazarotene. These ingredients were first used in the 1970s to treat acne, but patients discovered that during the treatment their skin had improved in many other ways. Here’s what Retinoids can do for your skin:
1. Retinoids prevent AND reduce wrinkles
All those anti-ageing ingredients commonly found in beauty products don’t reduce the wrinkles you already have but can only prevent new ones from forming. Some also contain ingredients like silicones that temporarily fill them in reducing their appearance, but nothing can get rid of wrinkles once they’re formed. Nothing bar Retinoids. Retinoids are the only thing that so far has been scientifically proven to reduce wrinkles thanks to its ability to stimulate the production of Hyaluronic Acid and collagen, which are the substances that give skin its structure, firmness and fullness. And not only do Retinoids stimulate their production, but they also slow down their depletion (which happens as we get old) preventing new wrinkles from forming! Of course you shouldn’t expect miracle results overnight, but with prolonged use you’ll see an improvement.
2. Retinoids treat acne
If you have acne, retinoids can help. Retin-A, for instance, is one of the most common treatments prescribed for the treatment of acne vulgaris. It’s not clear why and how it works, but it probably something to do with its ability to unclog pores. Although less strong, over the counter retinoids, such as retinol, can help keep acne under control too.
3. Retinoids fade hyperpigmentation spots
Hyperpigmentation (or dark spots on the skin) can be caused by several things: the sun, melasma, hormones, even cuts and bruises. Whatever the cause, Retinoids help speed up the skin’s natural cell turn over (the process by which skin replaces itself) so that these spots fade much faster.
Some tips on how to use Retinoids
Retinoids may be fantastic and beneficial ingredients, but like all good things in life, they don’t come without side effects. Here are a few tips on how to avoid them and get the best results from Retinoids.
- Because of their exfoliating action they can cause redness, burning, stinging and flaky skin in some people, especially those with sensitive skin. If that’s happened to you, only use retinoids two or three times a week instead than daily. In addition, apply only a very small amount and don’t use any other type of exfoliant or it might be too much for your skin, which will react badly.
- Another side effect of their exfoliating properties is that they make skin more susceptible to sun burns and sun damage in general. For this reason, it’s best to use Retinoids at night. If you wanna use them during they day though you can, but remember to also use a broad spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher.
- Retinoids should never be used in conjunction with AHA (Alpha Hydroxy Acids) and BHA (Beta Hydroxy Acids) as they will make them less effective. However, these ingredients are also good for the skin so if you wanna use them all, apply AHA or BHA during the day and Retinoids before going to sleep at night.
- Pregnant women and women that are breastfeeding should avoid using Retinoids. That’s because taking Retinoids orally can be harmful to the child and cause birth defects. And although there is no proof suggesting that Retinoids applied topically have the same side effects, dermatologists recommend to err on the side of caution and avoid them while pregnant or breastfeeding.
Do you use Retinoids in your skincare routine?