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6 common retinol myths busted

We researched some of the common misconceptions about retinol. In a nutshell? Don’t be scared of retinol!
retinol myths

Retinol, according to skincare brand Paula’s Choice, is the term used for the entire vitamin A molecule. This is one of the top ingredients for anti-ageing, since it’s known for its cell-communicating and antioxidant properties. But apart from being one of the first ingredients to look for when you are considering upping your anti-ageing regime, retinol is also one of those ingredients that is always treated with caution (Won’t it make me break out? Will it ruin my skin?) We researched some of the common misconceptions about retinol. In a nutshell? Don’t be scared of retinol!

1. Myth 1: Retinol should never be used in the daytime, as it causes sunburn

While sunlight can cause retinol to deteriorate, making it less effective, it’s not retinol itself that will cause more sun damage in any way. When you pair any product containing retinol with a good dose of high SPF, your face will be absolutely fine.

Read: 7 home remedies for sunburn 

2. Myth 2: When retinol causes you to break out, you need to stop using it immediately

While retinol will have different reactions for different people, you should remember that it is an active ingredient, and your skin will need to grow accustomed to it. Let your skin adjust to the product, but it goes without saying that if a product causes a really bad reaction, don’t keep on using it.

3. Myth 3: Retinol thins out the skin

Absolutely not. In fact, retinol stimulates collagen production.

4. Myth 4: Retinol should never be used around the eye area

This is only if the skin around your eyes is extremely delicate and susceptible to irritation. If, after applying any eye cream, your eyes sting badly, you should probably not be using that specific product.

Read: What is a lash lift and can it amp up your eyes?

5. Myth 5: Retinol will provide fast results

Unfortunately not. As with any skincare regime, the results will only show over time as your skin adjusts. And never rely on products alone to improve signs of anti-ageing – you will also benefit from a healthy diet, water and regular exercise.

6. Myth 6: When you use retinol, you don’t have to exfoliate, as retinol is an exfoliating ingredient

Untrue. According to the website Paula’s Choice, retinol is an antioxidant with skin-restoring properties, causing softer, plumper skin. Other ingredients such as AHAs and BHAs are in fact acids, affecting the dead surface of the skin and causing exfoliation. You should indeed be combining these ingredients, as retinol won’t clash with acids.

Photo: iStock/studiokovac


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