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How do I Choose the Best Retinol Treatment?

By Harriette Halepis
Updated May 17, 2024
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The best way to choose a retinol treatment is to consider the type of skin that you have. If you have sensitive skin, speak with your doctor before applying any kind of retinol treatment. If you have dry or combination skin, you should be able to use over-the-counter retinol treatments without causing skin irritation.

Retinol is a natural ingredient that is found in various animal and plant products. Skin experts believe that retinol has the ability to reduce the number of free radicals that exist inside of skin by encouraging cell growth. Various prescription retinol creams and over-the-counter creams exist.

People who have sensitive skin should use a hypo-allergenic retinol treatment. Hypo-allergenic treatments are made for sensitive skin, and, unlike regular treatments, this kind of treatment can be applied to skin twice per week. Aside from considering the type of skin that you have, it is also important to think about how you intend to use a retinol cream.

Some retinol creams were formulated specifically to treat acne. Other creams were created to treat acne and wrinkles. Before selecting a retinol treatment, make sure to read a product's label carefully. Selecting a cream that was not intended to treat your specific skin issues is not recommended.

Likewise, choose a cream that works with your schedule. Both night and day creams can be purchased, and selecting the one will work with your lifestyle is a wise idea. You can determine what kind of cream you should use by reading a product's label.

After purchasing a retinol treatment, use the product that you have purchased according to package directions. If you notice any red, swollen, or itchy skin, stop using a product immediately. If you do not notice desired results following treatment, consult your dermatologist.

While over-the-counter treatments are helpful, some people may require a prescription treatment. Typically, drugstore creams do not contain as much retinol as prescription creams. However, depending on your skin type, some over-the-counter brands may work for you. In most instances, drugstore creams are less expensive than prescription creams, though this is not always the case.

Keep in mind that any type of retinol may cause skin sensitivity. This is especially important to note if you plan on spending a large amount of time outdoors. Applying sunblock on a regular basis is a wise idea if you plan on using a retinol treatment.

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Discussion Comments
By ZipLine — On May 07, 2014

I think when it comes to retinol lotions and creams, the simpler the formula, the better. I try to avoid lotions with lots of ingredients, especially ingredients like chemicals and fragrances.

After trying many different products, I've finally found one that I like. It's actually an organic retinol treatment. Not many people have heard of this type of product but I highly recommend it. It's made with all natural ingredients and works great on sensitive skin. This is the only retinol product that I have been able to use consistently and we all know that consistency is important when it comes to retinol. My wrinkles are not as apparent as before and my skin feels silky smooth so I know that it's working.

By burcinc — On May 06, 2014

@literally45-- First of all, if you are just starting retinol products, use a treatment with a low concentration of retinol. This will prevent side effects and allow your skin to adjust. You can increase the concentration later on if your skin reacts well.

Secondly, all retinol products are not suitable for oily and acne prone skin. You certainly don't want to use something that's going to make your skin more oily or cause you to break out. Retinol can actually get rid of acne as well as blemishes because of its exfoliating effects. But the treatment should be in an oil-free base. Products with natural or mineral oil will probably make your skin worse.

As far as I know, there are retinol treatments out there specifically formulated for acne skin. Or you could search for retinol gel which is suited for oily, problem skin.

By literally45 — On May 06, 2014

There are so many retinol products on the market. I want to use a retinol treatment for my oily, acne-prone skin but I'm not sure which type is best. It's very confusing.

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