Everything You Need To Know About Retinol

Retinol is a potent product that has been touted as the holy grail for decades.

Retinol is a potent product that has been touted as the holy grail for decades. When it comes to skin care, the powerhouse ingredient can help you achieve the results you want to leave you glowing. 

What exactly is Retinol?

Prescription formulas that contain the magic ingredient, retinoic acid (also known as Retin-A), can visibly help the signs of aging and fight against wrinkles, pigmentation, and acne. Non-prescription formulas, on the other hand contain retinol, which is a derivative of Vitamin A. Both ‘Rs’ are considered to be effective formulas, but Retin-A will yield quicker results (biochemically speaking they do the same thing). Other “R-based” ingredients such as retinyl palmitate, retinyl acetate, and retinyl linoleate, however, may be gentler on the skin, but they’re also weaker. When you’re shopping for product, it’s important to know the differences. 

How does it work?

While many think that retinoids exfoliate your skin because of the redness and peeling application can sometimes cause, this simply isn’t true. Retinoids work at a much deeper level by stimulating enhanced collagen production, skin smoothing, and an evening of pigmentation.

When will I see results?

Like most things in life, you won’t be seeing an immediate change in the appearance of your skin. It can take a steady and consistent retinol routine up to 12 weeks for the full effects to show. Keep in mind that if you’re using a weaker retinoid it may not be as effective. However, often times a retinoid for sensitive skin can be used to help a patient work up to a stronger retinol once the skin cells have adapted. It can take up to three weeks to push past adverse effects such as redness or peeling, so be prepared to shed your old skin literally when starting a new routine. 

As you venture into new products and seek to treat your skin, it’s important to focus on the right kind of retinoid for your skin woes. Here are some of the PCA skin care products that we personally recommend:

Treat adult acne 

For adult acne that just won’t quit, we suggest PCA Skin Intensive Clarity Treatment: 0.5% pure retinol night.

Packed with the one-two punch of salicylic acid and retinol, you’ll notice a drastic reduction in breakouts.

Treat discoloration

For unsightly spots and uneven pigmentation, we recommend the Intensive Brightening Treatment: 0.5% pure retinol night. 

The formula can help dramatically reduce discoloration and skin yellowing and is packed with ingredients to restore your skin.

Prevent and correct fine lines

Aging is inevitable, how you age isn’t. The Intensive Age Refining Treatment: 0.5% pure retinol night helps visibly reduce wrinkles and build collagen. 

Sensitive skin

If you’re just entering the world of retinol, it may be wise to start with PCA’s Retinol Treatment for Sensitive Skin. This specifically curated formula is both hydrating and gentle. 

Still have questions? We have answers. For the best skin in Burlington and Natick, Massachusetts, give us a call! 

Burlington Office: (781) 647-1500 

Natick Office: (508) 975-4263


We're happy to answer any questions you may have, feel free to call us at
(781) 647-1500 for Burlington or (508) 975-4263 for Natick