What can you do to improve your skin while you wait for your retinol to kick in?




We love retinol, and it does exactly what it says on the can. Cons: As effective as it is, it can make your skin look worse for a short time before it gets better. 

If you're not sure what I'm talking about, this is a common side effect that happens when you first start incorporating retinol into your routine. The skin looks dry, red, and scaly, and feels tight, itchy, and uncomfortable. 

This happens to everyone when they first start using retinol, but I know you want to avoid it, and that's what we're going to talk about in today's blog post. So if you want to learn more about what you can put on your skin to improve it while you wait for your retinol to kick in, stay here. 

Don't forget, if you're interested in learning more about retinol and how it works, The Beauty Insiders has a number of retinol-related blog posts. 


How to make retinol more effective? 

The best way to boost the benefits of your retinol is to make sure you're applying it to your skin properly. Many people often feel that they need to use retinol more often to get quick results. 

The problem is that retinol doesn't like to be rushed, and to reap the benefits of this powerhouse, you'll need to introduce it into your routine slowly. If you're new to retinol and haven't incorporated it into your routine, here's an example of the most effective way to use it in your daily routine. 

Start by applying retinol to your skin once a week. Once the skin develops a tolerance, you can increase the frequency of use to twice a week, then up to three times a week. Be sure to use retinol products at night, as exposure to the sun can reduce their effectiveness. 

After using retinol products, counteract the drying effects of retinol with a serum or moisturizer enriched with hydrating ingredients like hyaluronic acid. 

Admittedly, using retinol in the most effective way requires a lot of patience and time, but if you follow the advice I share, you'll be amazed at the results you'll see. 


How do I prepare my skin for retinol? 

As I mentioned before, the way you apply your retinol can affect how it works on your skin. I will now tell you the best procedure to follow when incorporating retinol into your skincare routine. 

Here's an example: Everyone's skin is different. Therefore, if you have any doubts about introducing retinol into your daily routine, you should consult your doctor or dermatologist to avoid serious irritation and reactions. 

Step 1: Make sure your skin is clean and free of any residue of makeup or other skin care products. 

Step 2: Wait until the skin is completely dry before applying retinol products. This is important because applying retinol to wet skin can cause it to penetrate too deeply and lead to increased irritation. 

Step 3: Apply a pea-sized amount of retinol to the face and work into the skin in circular motions. 

Step 4: After the retinol has absorbed, apply a moisturizer with hydrating ingredients. 

Step 5: Be sure to apply SPF 30+ sunscreen in the morning to protect skin from the sun. This should happen every day, even if it looks cloudy and rainy. 


How long does it take for the skin to adapt to retinol? 

You can expect your skin to take about three weeks to adjust to the retinol. You'll also notice that she also develops some tolerance to retinoic acid during this time. In the early stages of using retinol, you will experience some degree of irritation, redness, peeling and flaking. 

These side effects are often referred to as "retinol the ugly" (more on that later!), and usually don't last longer than three to four weeks. If you find that they last longer, you may need to switch to a formula with a lower percentage of retinol. However, if side effects persist, you must stop using retinol products and seek help from a doctor or healthcare professional. 


Should hyaluronic acid be used before retinol? 

Yes, it is possible. This is considered a good idea to keep the skin's protective barrier strong and protect it from free radicals (such as UV rays, pollution, and other environmental factors that can cause long-term damage to the skin). 

You'll also find that hyaluronic acid acts as a humectant, drawing water into the skin's surface and keeping it there, counteracting the drying effects of retinol. 

If you're interested in learning more about using hyaluronic acid and retinol together, you can read a dedicated blog post that goes into more detail about using these powerful substances together. 


Can serums be put over retinol? 

Yes, of course, but remember that it's best to avoid serums with ingredients that can increase skin irritation. Avoid serums that contain salicylic acid, glycolic acid, or other chemical peels.

I have mentioned basic skin rules in previous blog posts, but it is important to keep this in mind when applying your skincare routine. 
To get the benefit of the active ingredients in the different formulations, you should apply your product from the thinnest to the thickest consistency. 

This prevents the formation of a physical barrier on the skin and prevents active ingredients from penetrating the different layers of the skin.

What's so ugly about retinol?
The "retinol ugly" refers to a common side effect that occurs when you first introduce retinol into your skincare routine. These symptoms can vary from redness, flaking, and rashes to itchy and scaly skin areas. Every retinol user experiences these side effects to some degree, and they usually only last three to four weeks at most.
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