It’s officially Fall, as the transition in weather calls for a few lifestyle changes, beauty routines automatically start shifting as well.. Our complexions are less exposed to the sun and there’s no better timing to start reversing the negative effects of the harsh sun rays by hitting the pause button on aging skin.. How do we achieve this? Two active ingredients come to mind simultaneously; glycolic acid and retinol.. Equally recommended by dermatologists, these two powerhouse ingredients make us wonder which is actually queen of the anti-aging skin-care aisle.. Read on, the dilemma ends here and today!
To begin with, let’s make sure we know the difference between retinol and glycolic acid and what role they each play in terms of anti-aging properties..
Glycolic acid is one type of alpha hydroxy acid and a chemical exfoliant that removes dead skin cells by loosening the ‘glue’ that holds the dead cells to the top layer of skin. Once these dead cells are removed, new youthful cells are revealed.
Retinol on the other hand is a vitamin A derivative that is often used to treat acne because it helps to speed up cell turnover, keeping dead cells from residing on your complexion and plugging your pores. As an anti-ager, it offers the benefit of stimulating collagen production as well. This is super important, because, as we age, we produce less and less collagen, which can often lead to skin laxity.
If you choose glycolic acid you are speeding up cell turnover while allowing better product absorption as a result.. So if you’re using peptides or serums chances are they’d penetrate the skin more deeply without having to first traverse a layer of dead skin cells.
On the other hand if you choose retinol you will generally be improving the texture of your skin and decreasing fine lines and wrinkles.. It does that by boosting collagen and elastin, which are building blocks of your skin.
Bottom line, if your concern is achieving a radiant glow and reduce the appearance of pores, fading discoloration and reviving dull and tired skin then glycolic acid should be your quick go-to active ingredient..
As for its part, retinol does work overtime to help with zits, if you’re looking for a surefire way to annihilate acne then retinol should be your hero product for spot treatment that is.. When it comes to getting better skin retinol serves as the finest upgrade to your routine that promises better quality of the skin.. Meaning a firmer and fuller complexion..
So, which one should you be using?
The key is to use both ingredients as part of your overall anti-aging skin-care regimen. They work differently yet join forces to provide a wholesome healthy rejuvenating treatment for your skin.
Glycolic acid is recommended at around the age of 24, adding a retinol in your mid- to late- 20s is advised when cell turnover and collagen production start to slow down. Never mix and apply both ingredients at the same time though!
Retinol generally tends to be drying, If you’re on the oilier side, you should be good to go 7 days a week, but if you have dry or combination skin, you should only be applying one to three times a week to keep you skin from getting aggravated.
Since retinol’s job is to speed up cell turnover, that can mean that you might get some degree of peeling. It’s normal. If it seems excessive, check in with your dermatologist, who can problem solve it by switching up how many days a week to use your product. Otherwise, slather on your way to better skin…