What is retinol?
Retinol is a form of Vitamin A or retinoid. Retinol products have different classifications: over the counter (OTC) products, medical-grade OTC products, and prescription-only products. Products containing retinol generally work in the same way, but there are a few key differences between the three.
- OTC or drugstore retinol products are usually gentle on the skin and cause less irritation, redness and flaking than their medical-grade OTC or prescription counterparts. Many OTC retinols contain ester-forms of retinol and don’t list the strength of the retinol featured in the product. These forms of retinol are less effective than retinol in its pure form and don't usually offer significant changes in the skin.
- Medical-grade OTC retinols yield great results and are usually safe to use both daily and long-term. Products like Vivier’s 0.3% Retinol SR Complex or Retinol 1% Night Complex use retinol in its most active form and indicate the strength on the packaging. These are the two most important factors in choosing a retinol:
- Ingredient list - Is the word “retinol” listed?
- Is the % strength of retinol disclosed somewhere on the packaging?
- Prescription-grade retinoid products, like Retin-A, are the strongest of the three. While prescription-grade retinols can offer quicker, more transformative results, it is also often met with negative side effects such as significant irritation, redness, and peeling of the skin. These are typically reserved for more aggressive cases and for a limited amount of time.
When selecting a retinol product, it is important to choose a medical-grade OTC product because it offers efficacy and results with less irritation and peeling.
What does retinol do for my skin?
Retinol is a multi-functional ingredient that plays 3 key roles in anti-aging and maintaining smooth, youthful, clear skin.
Retinol helps to stimulate and boost the production of collagen.
It’s been proven to increase the number of fibroblast cells, which we lose over time and are key to collagen production.
Retinol accelerates the cellular turnover of our skin by up to 6 times its normal rate.
Our cellular turnover rate slows down drastically over time which plays a huge role in aging of the skin. When we increase this process, we see improved tone, texture, and clarity of our skin with decreased appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Retinol is an extremely important ingredient for anyone with acne and clogged pores.
The increased cellular turnover purges the skin of impurities, clearing out pores. Retinol also works to regulate sebum production and to control inflammation.
What makes Vivier retinol products different?
Vivier’s retinol products are expertly formulated for optimal efficacy and results using a combination of powerful ingredients:
0.3% Retinol SR Complex
A great option for those who are sensitive to retinol and is also a great place to start for anyone looking to begin using retinol. Most people see great results and it is safe enough to use daily. If your skin tends to react or become irritated with new skin care products, start with this product and after some time you can graduate to the Vivier Retinol 1% Night Complex once your skin has become accustomed.BUY NOW
Retinol 1% Night Complex
Features 1% retinol, which is a stronger more effective dose, but yet still gentle enough for daily use without any down-time. It is a step-up when graduating from the 0.3% Retinol SR Complex or for anyone with oily or acne-prone skin who require a stronger dose of retinol.BUY NOW
How to apply?
For any retinol product, it’s important to slowly let you skin acclimate to the ingredient to minimize irritation, flaking and redness. Start by applying a pea-sized amount every other night. Start at the outer edged of your jaw and hairline and work the product towards the center of your face. Try pressing the product into your skin vs. rubbing to minimize pulling and friction on your skin. After 2-3 weeks, you may work up to every night. Retinol can make the skin more susceptible to sunburn so use your retinol at night and always use a broad-spectrum SPF during the day to protect your skin.
Retinol is so highly regarded in the skincare space because of the many benefits it provides to the skin including: diminished appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, increased smoothness and luminosity, fewer breakouts and blemishes, refined pores, brightening of dark spots and increased evenness of skin tone. After 3-6 weeks of use you will begin to notice the positive changes to your skin that retinol can bring. With long-term and continued use (3-6+ months), you can expect even more improvement.
Until next time!
Stay safe, stay healthy.