Retinol 101: everything you need to know about this incredible skin vitamin 6 months ago

Retinol 101: everything you need to know about this incredible skin vitamin

It's just brilliant!

There are always buzz words and trends when it comes to skincare.

We hear things like Vitamin C, AHA, glycolic acid... and you kind of start to wonder what is the best for you!

Last year, the word retinol came into my life in a big way, and to be honest, I have never looked back.

So, what exactly is retinol?

Made from vitamin A, retinol is added to creams to boost the amount of collagen your body produces.

Our collagen stocks start to decline once we hit 30, so it is a dream product for anyone nearing that stage in life.

This means that it plumps up the skin, reduces fine lines and wrinkles, while also improving skin tone and colour.

Yep, it literally is a miracle worker.

Using a retinol-based product can make the top layer of your skin dry and flaky - this is perfectly normal honeys.

It’s best to apply it at night and wear moisturiser and SPF the next morning.

Daniel Isaacs of skincare brand Medik8 chatted to Cosmopolitan earlier this year, and dished all the retinoledge (see what I did there?)

"Retinol, or vitamin A, is best for 30+ skin with fine lines and wrinkles, however you can start using retinols younger if you want to."

"Younger skin types may not see the effects as much as older skin types as they have less age concerns, however prevention is better than cure."

Words to live by.

"Retinol can enhance collagen production to prevent the formation of future lines and wrinkles. Combined with a high SPF and vitamin C in the morning, you are setting yourself up for great skin for life."

As for products, there are so many amazing choices, but I do have my favourites, of course.

The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid 2% in Squalane.

This is the retinol I'm currently using, and it's just brilliant. It is a water-free solution that contains a 2 percent concentration of an advanced retinoid active complex called Granactive Retinoid, that gives amazing results without any of the irritation and drawbacks common with retinol. Plus, it's an absolute bargain at €9.60.


Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Retinol Night Serum Capsules. 

These little pink treats are a new, targeted treatment that visibly diminishes lines and wrinkles while improving skin texture and tone. Each capsule is single use and sealed tight for optimal freshness and potency (and they're handy for travel!). They're €90 for 60 capsules, but you can opt for a smaller supply to try them out!


Murad Retinol Youth Renewal Night Cream.

If I won the lotto in the morning, I would lather this cream on my entire body every single night. This baby is packed with Peptides and anti-aging Vitamin A that minimise wrinkles, and smoothes the skin leaving it supple and younger looking. It costs €80, but it's so worth it.