What does it do?
Vitamin A increases skin cell turnover ( so less wrinkles/less pigmentation), stimulates collagen and blood vessels, builds healthier epidermis, treats acne and reduces pore sizes.
There are two main categories of retinoids:
- Available over the counter .
- Retinol must be converted in the skin to retenoic acid to be effective. Only a small percentage of retinol is converted to retinoic acid in the skin.
- Retinol is available in various strengths
- Requires a doctor’s prescription and is more potent and effective than retinol
- Comes in different strengths and there are mainly three generations of retinoid acid (Tretinoin/Adapalene/Tazarotene)
- Doctors scripts for stronger strengths range from 2-4% are also available.
NOT recommended for
- Very sensitive skin
- Severe rosacea
Because Vitamin A can be irritating to the skin, it is recommended that a skin conditioning regime should be followed to increase tolerance.
Suggested home regime
- Use at night after cleansing your skin.
- Apply moisturiser first, half an hour beforehand.
- Apply small amount (pea size) of retinol (over the counter, not prescription) uniformly to the face avoiding corners of mouth, nose folds/creases and eyelid margins.
- Apply every second/third night.
- If your skin is sensitive, you may want to use an even smaller amount of vitamin A with moisturiser and slowly increase the amount of vitamin A to your moisturiser ratio before increasing the frequency of vitamin A use.
- Using Vitamin B (niacinamide) cream may help reduce irritation from Vitamin A.
- When your skin can tolerate this, then start increasing the volume and strength of retinol and apply nightly.
- Wash off in the morning, add moisturiser and sunscreen.
- When you are ready after this step, see the Doctor for retinoid acid with a suitable concentration.