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The Do's and Dont's of Retinol Use

Retinol is certainly one of several major ingredients that have taken the skin care industry by storm in recent years.  While retinol is truly fantastic when it comes to skin care and anti-aging, it is very important to understand how to use products that contain this powerful and effective ingredient correctly (lest we begin to shed like a snake)!

Used appropriately, Retinol can be an incredibly successful addition to the skin care routine of those looking for a regenerative treatment. As a skin care company that provides retinol products, we feel that it is our responsibility to inform and educate our Eve Hansen community about the function of this and other ingredients to be used on the face and body.

eve hansen anti aging retinol serum benefits

So, what is retinol?

Retinol is a member of the retinoid family – which is a derivative of Vitamin A. Retinoids work to treat and actively reduce visible signs of premature aging such as wrinkles, fine lines, age spots, and hyperpigmentation. Retinol is a skin care treasure because it rids the skin of old cells and triggers collagen production.  You can read more about the benefits of retinol here.

Your first time using retinol serum doesn’t have to be scary! To address any confusion or apprehension some of us may naturally have before starting a retinol treatment regimen, we’ve compiled a list of our favorite essential tips for optimal retinol serum use:

Tip #1: DO Start Slow

While slight drying and peeling can be a normal part of the retinol treatment process (because retinol speeds up the cell turnover rate), severe irritation and redness are to be avoided. Using a retinol treatment serum more than once a week may be too often to start.

To take full advantage of retinol’s benefits, while preventing unwanted irritation, you need to prep your skin and build its tolerance to the ingredient. For the first few weeks, use retinol serum sparingly only one night per week. If your skin doesn’t react aversely to the powerful ingredient, increase your usage to two nights per week. Slowly increase use while closely monitoring your skin’s reaction to the product. 

Take it slow and listen to your skin.

Tip #2: DON’T Use during the day

We advise against retinol usage during the day because it can further expose delicate layers of the skin to harsh UV rays and increase risk of damage. Additionally, the Vitamin A in retinol begins to deteriorate when exposed to the sun’s UV rays – making the product less effective.

Tip #3: DO Use moisturizer after

One of the best things you could do for your skin while using retinol products is to keep it moisturized and properly hydrated. Despite its many benefits, some level of discomfort is to be expected when using retinol. Keeping skin hydrated with a simple moisturizer can minimize irritation without interfering with the strength and effectiveness of retinoid products. 

anti wrinkle cream and dry skin moisturizer cream

Tip #4: DON’T Skip the sunscreen

Although we recommend using retinol only at night, this does not mean that you’re in the clear to skip the SPF. Using retinol can make skin especially sensitive to the sun. As such, it’s crucial to apply SPF every day – yes, even if it’s cloudy outside! Opt for SPF 30 or higher and reapply every two hours.

Tip #5: DO Stick With It!

Long term and consistent use of retinol is the best way to see desired results. It may be instinctive to stop use immediately upon seeing the initial signs of flaking skin, but this is an important part of the process. With dedicated and appropriate use of retinol, the result can be truly superb! The highest quality and desired outcome is definitely worth the wait!

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