10 Jan 2024

Meet the Retinoid Family

Retinoids is an umbrella term for the entire family of Vitamin A derivates, which includes both prescription and over-the-counter products.

Retinol is probably the most famous one in this group of active ‘skin-improving’ ingredients.

Retinoids are considered the ‘holy grail of actives in skincare’. They are multifunctional:

  • Normalise skin cell turnover,
  • Reduce oiliness,
  • Quieten down the production of excess pigmentation,
  • Stimulate collagen production and prevent collagen breakdown

You can find below all the members of the retinoid family, ranging FROM THE STRONGEST TO WEAKEST members of the family:

  • Retinoic acid (also known as tretinoin) is the most effective one, but is only available on prescription
  • Retinoid acid esters such as hydroxypinacolone retinoate (HPR, also known as granactive retinoid) and retinyo retinoate.
  • Retinol, the most famous one
  • Retinaldehyde (also known as retinal)
  • Retinol esthers such as retinyl palmitate, retinyl acetate, retinyl proprionate. The very mildest ones, are unlikely to cause any irritation but are also not very effective.

The strongest ones will be the most effective ones, but are often less well tolerated, especially in ‘retinoid newbies’.

Couple of tips‼️

  • If you have sensitive skin, you might want to work on the skin barrier first before adding in a retinoid.
  • Always start slow and build up.
  • Introduce only one new product at a time
  • Discuss with your practitioner if in doubt about how/when to use retinoids
Treatments to Consider:

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