Dr Anna’s Tips On Using Retinol This Summer: Your Must-Know Tips - Skinora
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Dr Anna’s Tips On Using Retinol This Summer: Your Must-Know Tips

Retinol and retinoids first hit the market in 1971 and their popularity has only continued to grow. You might also know retinol and retinoids by their other name, vitamin A, which promotes graceful ageing and an even skin tone and texture. Both derivatives of vitamin A are up there with hyaluronic acid as hero ingredients, that ought to be a component in your skincare routine.

But, there’s a lot of speculation as to whether or not you can use these products in the summer months. If you’re someone who is a little unsure of this, you’re in the right place as we’re discussing this below.

Retinol vs Retinoid – what’s the difference?

Both retinol and retinoids are derivatives of vitamin V, but their molecular structures differ – the latter has a higher concentration, making it more suitable for specific skin conditions like acne.

As retinoids require a prescription, you would need to speak to a dermatologist to obtain products containing them. Retinol, on the other hand, can be obtained without one and is a great option for people without specific skin conditions. For example, if you’re skincare goal is to keep premature ageing at bay, retinol is the ingredient to look for when you’re browsing products.

Can I use retinoids during the day?

Topical retinoids are absorbed into the cell and trigger increased production of proteins that support the wellbeing of your skin. This said they don’t go hand in hand with sunlight. Retinoids break down easily in the sun and render skin more sensitive, as the increased cell turnover means it has little time to develop a barrier against harmful UV rays.

So, make sure you’re applying retinoid-based products at night, to give them a chance to work their magic, before they have a chance to degrade.

Can I use retinol during the day?

As we’ve mentioned, retinol is low concentration vitamin A – it’s the less potent counterpart of retinoids. As long as you’re using sunscreen with a high SPF (50) and you’re wearing a hat and shades, you can use retinol during daytime hours. If you can, avoid lengthy sun exposure between the hours of 10am – 3pm.

Be portion-wise

Like everything else in your skincare routine, retinol should be used in moderation. Overuse could lead to dry, flakey or red skin. If you’re new to retinol and retinoids, opt for a low concentration product, so your skin can acclimatize. Retinal and retinyl are less potent versions that you may wish to try out first.

Our picks: Retinol products at Skinora

ZO Wrinkle and Texture Repair

  • Focuses on restoring collagen, fibronectin and hyaluronic acid.
  • A Retinol and tetrapeptide mix that works to accentuate your skin’s natural hydration.
  • Microemulsion delivery for rapid release of retinol, which means faster results for your skin.


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Medik8 Crystal Retinol 6

  • Contains retinaldehyde, a revolutionary form of vitamin A.
  • Unmatched in its age-defying power, retinal delivers results 11 times faster than classic forms of retinol.
  • Entry-level product for those with sensitive skin, or those who would to try to retinol-based products for the first time.

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About the Author: Anna Puri

Dr Anna Puri is an Aesthetic doctor and GP with over 14 years experience in both the medical and aesthetic fields. She completed her undergraduate training at the University of St Andrews and University of Manchester. She continues to work both as an Aesthetic doctor at her clinics in Ascot and Kew and as a GP. Dr Anna brings her holistic approach to all aspects of the care she provides with a strong focus on advice and treatment that is specifically tailored to her patients expectations and needs. She has worked with cosmeceutical skin care brands and treated a wide range of skin concerns for over a decade. Dr Anna has a special interest in Antiaging skincare and procedures . Dr Anna's work has been featured in various magazines including Lux and The Aesthetics Journal. You can follow Dr Anna on the SkinoraUK instagram page and Skinora YouTube channel.

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Last update: June 22nd, 2022

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