“If you're overusing your retinol, or if you're using a retinol that's too strong for you, it can lead to peeling, irritation, and excessive dryness, which may have led to retinol's association with skin thinning,” she says.
Retinol is best applied at night, since it can increase your skin's sensitivity to the sun. When you do go outside, be sure to use sunscreen to protect your face. Also, keep in mind that you don't need to use retinol on a daily basis for it to be effective at treating acne. Two to three times per week may be enough.
If you use too high a strength or apply retinol more frequently than you should, you may experience further irritation, like itchiness and scaly patches. Some people have noticed acne breakouts after using retinol, though this is a rare side effect.
If your skin gets red or discolored and inflamed to the point where you are in pain, ice the area or apply a cold compress to help soothe your skin. Keep your skin routine as basic and gentle as possible while your skin heals from retinol burn, rinsing with cool water once per day and skipping makeup if you're able to.
Can Retinol Damage the Skin? You may have heard that extended retinol use can cause the skin to thin and the skin barrier to degrade as a result of increased cell turnover, but Shah says that's a myth. You don't need to worry about retinol causing permanent damage, Schlessinger says.
Purging is slightly different, appearing on the skin mostly as blackheads or small skin-coloured bumps just under the surface of the skin. But it is also possible for purging to cause similar spots to a breakout, too.
First, the answer is yes, retinol can make wrinkles worse, especially when you first start using it. What is happening is a drying effect, and one can get epidermal sliding from separation from the dermis.
Purging usually lasts between two to four weeks, according to Dr Phillips. “Efficacy is partly determined by the formulation and strength of the product; however, on average, most people will start to see a difference after a month,” he says.
Peeling, redness, and irritation are common onset reactions for some people when they first start to use retinol. Some reactions get so bad that the common term used to describe the list of effects has been dubbed the “retinol uglies”. Note from a skincare expert: Many things in life get worse before they get better.
Skin purging typically looks like tiny red bumps on the skin that are painful to touch. They are often accompanied by whiteheads or blackheads. It can also cause your skin to become flaky. The flare ups caused by purging have a shorter lifespan than a breakout.
In general, retinol is one of the more gentle varieties of retinoids, however, “if you're going to experience shedding it will begin on day three to five of daily night time use, and this usually continues for about five to 10 days depending on your skin type and the percentage of retinol you've used,” adds Ejikeme.
A formula with retinol, like the L'Oréal Paris Revitalift Triple Power Eye Treatment, should be applied after your serums and before moisturizer due to its consistency.
And washing your face is necessary to remove any retinol or AHAs you wore overnight. Bottom line: Not washing your face in the morning is a mistake. A thorough a.m. cleanse ensures your products will work like they're supposed to.
Should you use retinol under your eyes? Yes, definitely. While it is true that retinol – a form of vitamin A – is a powerful ingredient and the skin under your eyes is delicate, there's no reason why you should miss out on the amazing benefits of retinol.
To help combat aging, Dhingra recommends applying topical retinoids to this area. Retinoids, which are topical vitamin A-based derivatives, may help reduce fine lines and wrinkles by increasing collagen production. If you use retinoids on your face, extend the treatment area to your neck and chest at night.
After two to six weeks of using tretinoin, it's usually okay to start using an exfoliant. However, it's best to use exfoliating products as sparingly as possible while using tretinoin to avoid potentially irritating your skin.
You can use moisturiser before you apply retinoids, and you can even mix the two together. This is likely to lessen side effects, and keep your skin hydrated. Myers believes that “gentle exfoliation is your best friend” and can help to remove some of the dry, flaky skin that may be irritating you.
Dermatologist Dendy Engelman, M.D., considers whiteheads and blackheads “mild” and therefore, “over-the-counter products that contain ingredients such as salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, and retinol should do the trick.” According to Dr.
6: Myth: If you have peeling or redness, you should stop using the retinoid. With retinoids, it's often a “worse-before-better” type of situation. Typical side effects include dryness, tightness, peeling, and redness — especially when first starting out.
No, it's not. It's just an adjustment process. For the record, no study proved that there's been any skin damage or signs of 'faster aging' caused solely by retinol.
Contrary to some beliefs, retinol is perfectly safe to use on your skin. But if you rush into things and don't use it properly, it can come with some unwanted side effects. Your skin is affected by more than what you put on it.
But even when skin wasn't in outright crisis mode, a telltale sort of “retinoid face” could develop: spookily taut and shiny, like Barbie plastic.
Don't Mix: Retinol with vitamin C, benzoyl peroxide, and AHA/BHA acids. AHA and BHA acids are exfoliating, which can dry out skin and cause further irritation if your skincare routine already includes retinol. As for benzoyl peroxide and retinol, they cancel each other out.