Skip Nav
Kim Kardashian Sleeps in Makeup 2018
Celebrity Beauty
Kim Kardashian Says She Sleeps in Her Makeup — WTF, How Is Her Skin So Perfect?
Shawn Mendes Braiding Camila Cabello's Hair
Camila Cabello
Shawn Mendes Can Add Braiding to His List of Achievements — His First Client? Camila Cabello
Hair
7 Glitter Hair Looks That Are Perfect For the Holidays — and So Easy to Do
Chrissy Teigen Dad Tattoo 2018
Celebrity Beauty
Stop Everything: Chrissy Teigen's Dad Just Got A Tattoo of Her Face For Her Birthday
Hair
Take Note — These Are the Best Beauty Products of 2018, According to Our Editors

Retinol Pros and Cons

The Pros and Cons of Using Retinol — Plus, When You Should Start

Retinol is touted as a holy grail ingredient for smoothing out fine lines, helping with skin texture and tone, and getting a youthful glow over time. This MVP ingredient promises to fight the signs of aging by encouraging cell turnover. But how does it actually work? And how should you incorporate it into your skincare routine to see results?

Retinol
is a type of vitamin A — also found in foods like carrots, milk, and eggs — that naturally occurs in our skin. When applied and absorbed into the skin, enzymes convert retinol to retinoic acid, which stimulates the production of healthy new skin cells (kind of like Baby Foot, without the snake-like shedding).

Over-the-counter retinols typically range from 0.1 to 1.0 percent concentrations — the higher the concentration, the more potent it is. It's recommended to apply retinol products at night and to start slow — once or twice a week — and work your way up, depending on how your skin tolerates it. Also, since retinol can dry out your skin and boost its sensitivity, moisturise and slather on SPF during the day to further protect your skin.

Along with retinol, there are a few other "R" words out there — namely, Retin-A and retinoids. Basically, retinol and Retin-A are both different types of retinoids. Retinol is in over-the-counter products that can treat wrinkles and improve skin texture. Retin-A (the brand name for Tretinoin) is a more potent form of vitamin A that treats acne.

Now that you have a better idea of what retinol can do for your skin, watch the latest episode of POPSUGAR beauty explainer series The Makeup for more retinol tips and product recommendations from our resident beauty expert, Kirbie Johnson.

From Our Partners
How Travelling Affects Skin
Best Beauty Gifts Under $50 From Nordstrom
The Best Beauty Products of 2018, Editor Picks
Lily Aldridge Pregnancy Beauty Routine
Dr Jart Ceramidin Cream Review
Dr Perricone 3-Day Diet Review
What's the Difference Between Retinol Purging and a Breakout
Dr. Jart Cicapair Tiger Grass Color Correcting Treatment
Elle Effect Tan Review
Best Face Oils
Expensive Skin Care That's Worth the Money
Best New Beauty Products Spring and Summer
From Our Partners
Latest Beauty
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds