Retinol for Wrinkles
Retinol is a derivative of vitamin A, within the class of chemical compounds called retinoids. It helps skin from showing signs of aging by penetrating the skin and repairing the lower layers that contain the collagen and elastin that support the skin. Continued use of retinol products can help smooth skin and diminish the appearance of lines and wrinkles.
Retinol, an antioxidant, neutralizes the free radicals that can break skin down and cause wrinkles. It has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as a treatment for wrinkles in over-the-counter products. Retinol reduces the look wrinkles by renewing skin cells in the dermis and epidermis and increasing the skin's elasticity.
Types of Products
Lotions containing retinol can be used day or night and can be used more than once a day. A retinol cream is thicker than lotion and can be used overnight. A retinol serum is the most powerful option and it will penetrate the skin the fastest, for more dramatic wrinkle-reducing results.
Drugstores sell creams and lotions containing retinol. Specialty stores and the beauty counter of department stores have higher-priced products, but check to make sure you are getting a higher strength. Retin-A or Renova give you stronger retinol, but you will need to go through a dermatologist as they are only available by prescription.
Retinol for wrinkles is in many products and at different strengths, so there is no set time frame for results. Depending on the strength of the retinol you are using, you may see a decrease in wrinkles in a few days. Over the following weeks, your skin will take on a smoother appearance.
Using retinol can increase your sensitivity to the sun. Use sun block (an SPF of at least 15) before heading outside. If you have dry skin, using retinol for wrinkles may cause more flaking. This generally subsides after a few days of use. If it is bothersome, you can try using the retinol product on alternate nights.
You should avoid retinol (and all vitamin A derivatives) if you are pregnant or considering becoming pregnant. Retinol presents an increase in the risk of birth defects. If you experience any reaction--such as a rash, burning or swelling--while using retinol, stop using the product and consult your doctor.
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