Skip Nav
Acne
I Thought the Broken Capillaries on My Face Were Acne Scars — Here's How I Got Rid of Them
Kesha
Kesha's New Years Resolution Is to "Let Her Freckles Live," and AMEN
Beauty News
Introducing Benefit's Latest Model, Kate Grant, Who Has Down Syndrome
Beauty Trends
You'll Want to Book an Appointment With Your Stylist After Seeing These 20 Brown Hair Ideas
Beauty Trends
See Every Knockout Product in Maybelline's New Collection With Puma

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, moisturize 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's beauty explainer series The Makeup for more retinol tips and product recommendations from our resident beauty expert, Kirbie Johnson.

From Our Partners
Tattoo Idea 2019
Best New Products at Sephora January 2019
Volition Apple Cider Vinegar Resurfacing Peel Pads Review
Kendall Jenner Acne Post
Benefits of Squalane in Skincare
Best Winter Skincare Products
Workout Makeup Trend 2019
How to Treat Broken Capillaries on the Face
How to Clean Makeup Sponges
Lush Sustainable Naked Skincare Collection
Mara Beauty Universal Face Oil Review
Customized Skin Care 2019
From Our Partners
Latest Beauty
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds