How to Use AHAs With Retinol in a Skincare Routine
Acne, clogged pores and an uneven skin tone can make your complexion a disaster area. Products that contain alpha hydroxy acids, or AHAs, help unclog pores and refine your skin's texture, according to the "Cosmopolitan," and "Allure" websites. Retinol creams help speed up cell renewal, giving you a smoother, more even-looking face. These two products can be used in conjunction with each other to help achieve a more balanced complexion. However, as they are both strong exfoliating products, introduce them gradually into your skin care routine and reduce your application if any flaking or irritation develops.
Wash your face in the morning with a mild, oil-free cleanser to remove dirt and impurities without causing irritation. Look for soap-free products that promise to be gentle on your skin. Use lukewarm water and a circular massaging motion to apply the product, and then rinse thoroughly.
Apply a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher during the day to protect your skin. The "Allure" website states that AHAs and retinol creams increase your skin's sensitivity to the sun, and daily application of a broad-spectrum sunscreen is essential to keeping your face protected from damage. Look for an oil-free product that will not clog your pores and apply it to your face, neck and any other exposed areas. Reapply it during the day as needed.
Wash your face with the same mild soap at night, and then exfoliate it gently with a warm, wet washcloth to get rid of dead skin and pore-clogging buildup. This will allow the AHA and retinol creams to absorb more efficiently. Rinse and dry your face when you finish.
Apply an anti-acne lotion or pore-refining cream that contains AHAs every other night. Smooth it over your entire face, concentrating especially on the areas where you have blackheads or clogged pores.
Apply a retinol cream on the nights that you do not apply the AHA product. The "Allure" website recommends looking for an over-the-counter night cream that promises to smooth your skin and refine its texture. Apply a small amount to your face and rub it in gently.
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