Start the skin with retinol, a powerful ingredient
Retinol improves all skin types – and smooth-faced celebrities like Nicole Kidman and Paris Hilton are praising it. It is one of the most studied skin care ingredients, with over 50 years of peer-reviewed research showing its short and long term benefits.
Why isn’t everyone using it? Well, the initial setup can be tricky. Until recently, I found my skin shed when I used formulas that were 0.5% retinol or higher and I just didn’t want to deal with the peeling. The confinement gave me ample time to develop my tolerance.
Targeting a small area like your eyes can help you gain confidence. “Retinol is one of the most important anti-aging ingredients. There are so many benefits that it boosts collagen, helps reduce wrinkles, eliminates environmental damage, reduces scarring, helps skin texture… it does it all! says Kate Somerville, a famous esthetician, who recommends her clients use retinol 2-3 times a week from her twenties.
Kate Somerville + Retinol Firming Eye Cream, € 83 from arnotts.ie, has a massage applicator and includes pure retinol, bakuchiol alternative to retinol, hyaluronic acid, aloe vera and vitamin E .
“Generally, the level of retinol depends on whether you want to maintain the health of your skin or if you have advanced skin conditions that you want to treat. Lower retinol concentrations are best for maintenance and minor skin care issues. Higher concentrations (up to 1%) are best for those with visible signs of sun damage or rashes.
Paula’s Choice 1% Retinol Booster, € 46 at skincity.com, also includes a range of soothing agents and antioxidants to enhance retinol results.
For example, The Inkey List Retinol Face Serum, € 11.99 on mccauley.ie, mixes 1% stable retinol and 0.5% granactive retinoid (slightly stronger than retinol), with squalane to hydrate and soothe. The slow release formula minimizes irritation.
Kiehl’s Retinol Skin-Renewing Daily Micro-Dose Serum 50ml, € 68.50, on arnotts.ie and brownthomas.com, is fragrance and alcohol free. There is a fairly low concentration of retinol in the bottle, so it may take some time for you to see specific retinol benefits.
The formula also contains niacinamide, ceramides and a peptide in the formula to help fortify the skin’s moisture barrier and increase skin tolerance from the first use.