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Retinol for facial skin: Is it really an effective remedy for blemishes ?

Retinol-based cosmetic formulations are gaining in popularity every day, promising to tackle almost any beauty task. This powerful ingredient is included in a wide range of products aimed at treating acne, rejuvenating and reducing the signs of photoaging. How does the presence of retinol in the composition affect the skin? And how do you apply these cosmetics? Let's take a closer look at one of the most popular components of modern cosmetics.

What is retinol and how does it work ?

Retinol for facial skin: Is it really an effective remedy for blemishes ?

When we talk about retinol, we most often group all possible forms of vitamin A into one concept, which ensures the normal functioning and development of the entire body. However, it is more correct to call them retinoids. Retinol is just one of many fat-soluble derivatives of vitamin A. The most popular natural retinoids are:

Tretinoin (trans-retinoic acid) is the most active of all the forms, having a powerful effect on the skin, but at the same time the most irritating effect. The use of drugs containing tretinoin should be particularly cautious.

Retinaldehyde is a fairly stable substance, giving a good result at a concentration of 0.025-0.05%.

Retinol is not the most stable form, but it gives good results when encapsulated.

Retinyl palmitate is the weakest of all the varieties, which nevertheless have good stability. It is most often used as an antioxidant at a concentration of 0.5 to 1%.

The skin cells only perceive the most active form, retinoic acid, in its pure form. All other vitamin A derivatives must be converted into tretinoin, after which they can act on the epidermal cells. The strength of the impact and the speed of the onset of the effect depend on the speed of the transformation process.

For example, according to the scheme: retinyl palmitate → retinol → retinaldehyde → tretinoin, the closer the substance is to the final product (tretinoin), the higher its efficacy. From this point of view, synthetic retinoids obtained under laboratory conditions (isotretinoin, adapalene, tazarotene, granactive retinoid), which are immediately converted to retinoic acid, have certain advantages.

Granactive retinoid is the last complex that can be used safely 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, even during the day. It has no side effects on dry and sensitive skin.

Action of retinol on facial skin

Retinol for facial skin: Is it really an effective remedy for blemishes ?

Cosmetic preparations containing retinol can solve a wide range of aesthetic problems. Their effectiveness in fighting wrinkles, acne and pigmentation is a medical fact. Retinoid cosmetics contribute to:

Cell renewal. Retinol accelerates the process of micro-exfoliation of the skin (peeling effect), thanks to which the renewal cycle of the epidermis cells is normalized.

Acceleration of the synthesis of hyaluronic acid, collagen, and elastin, thanks to which the skin becomes more elastic and resistant, wrinkles are smoothed.

The thickening of the deep layers of the epidermis, in which moisture is retained, so that the skin stays hydrated longer.

Get rid of acne. Retinol normalizes the production of sebum, relieves inflammation and helps shrink pores, so preparations containing this component are often recommended for people with skin problems.

It is recommended to use retinol preparations after 25 years, when the first signs of photoaging and wrinkles usually appear. You can find a suitable product in the assortment of the most famous brands.

Rules for using retinol-containing medications

Retinol for facial skin: Is it really an effective remedy for blemishes ?

Most forms of vitamin A do not work in sunlight. Therefore, retinoids are more effective for nighttime care.

It is best to gradually add retinol-based products to your daily skin care routine.

To avoid negative consequences in the form of irritation and redness, apply cosmetic products only to dry skin.

Since retinol is not very stable, it is best to use products in airtight tubes or opaque bottles and store cosmetics in a cool, dark place.

When choosing, take into account the needs of your skin: for oily skin, it is better to use light emulsions; for dry skin, creams.

In some cases, the use of these foundations is unacceptable. Preparations with a high concentration of active ingredients should not be used by pregnant and breastfeeding women, people with cancer, as well as in cases of intolerance to retinoids, eczema, rosacea, and psoriasis. It is best to consult an esthetician or consultant before purchasing.

Side effects of retinol

Retinol for facial skin: Is it really an effective remedy for blemishes ?

If the exact concentration of retinol is not indicated on the package, it is likely that the composition contains very little. Products such as retinol face cream, for example, can be used without fear, as their concentration of active ingredients is low. Pharmaceutical preparations and professional products contain higher doses of retinol. Therefore, they are usually introduced gradually into your skin care routine, starting with an application once or twice a week.

If not followed, and if the dermatologist's instructions are not followed, retinol-based facial products can cause a number of side effects:

  • Skin irritation;
  • The appearance of unusual allergic reactions;
  • In pregnant women: genetic mutations in the fetus.
  • Burns and pigmentation may occur if you do not use sun protection.
  • Retinol is contraindicated for thin and sensitive skin.

Retinoids have a photosensitizing effect, which means they increase sensitivity to ultraviolet light. This is why some cosmetic products, which are much more expensive, should only be applied to the skin in the evening and never immediately before going out.

Natural Receipts

Blog specializing in sharing thoughts based on personal experiences. I strive to provide accurate information and sound recommendations, but please keep in mind that I am not a beauty expert or health specialist.

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