How To Guide: Using Retinol For Sensitive Skin

Retinol guide

There are so many skincare products to keep skin looking great over a lifetime, but if you’ve got sensitive skin, it’s easy to feel like you’re missing out. Retinol is one of the best skincare ingredients to keep skin looking healthy and glowing, but it's also very active so it takes a while for even resilient skin to get used to. If you have sensitive skin and you want to give retinol a try, follow our tips to ease your skin into the world of retinol gently.

Our most important tip: Be patient.

Retinol for sensitive skinWe know it’s exciting to get stuck into a new product, but with your sensitive skin, you need to give it time to adjust to new active ingredients. Our Retinol Boosters are designed to be used on their own or mixed into a moisturiser to make them super flexible for anyone to incorporate into their routine. If you want to try our Retinol Booster on your sensitive skin, here’s the secret to success.

  1. We always recommend trying a patch test of any new product for sensitive skin to make sure your skin doesn’t have any sensitivities to the ingredients. We are always happy for you to pop into one of our clinics to try any of our products.
  2. Start with just one drop of Retinol Booster into moisturiser a twice a week, or even just once if you're very sensitive.
  3. Keep the dose at the same level (1 drop in moisturiser) for at least a few weeks. We know this doesn’t seem like much but be patient - you’re playing the long game.
  4. If your skin is happy after a few weeks, slowly increase the frequency of use (twice a week, three times a week, every other day, every day).
  5. Here’s the top tip – if your skin is still happy, go ahead and increase the dose to two drops, but to ensure your skin remains happy, reduce the frequency of use again to two or three times a week.  Remember to listen to your skin – if it starts to become more sensitive, drop the frequency of use again. Following this cycle will allow your skin to slowly adapt to its new friend Retinol!
  6. Wear your SPF every day to keep your skin protected. This is always a must, but oh-so-important for sensitive skin when using retinol.

Remember: you’ve got this! It may be a slow process, but your skin will thank you in the long run.

Less is more.

Sensitive skin can be tricky. Products that may work for one person’s skin can react on another. Skincare products use lots of ingredients to make them feel great so that you enjoy using them. For most people this is fine, but on sensitive skin, lots of extra ingredients mean more ingredients for your skin to react to. Try looking for a product with as few ingredients as possible. In particular, avoid fragrances. These may make a product smell good enough to eat (definitely not advised!), but both natural and synthetic fragrances often irritate sensitive skin. We know that even when you’ve got sensitive skin, you still want to look and feel your best, so we worked hard to ensure that our Retinol Boosters were as friendly as can be. They have very simple but effective ingredient lists, making them easy to incorporate into your favourite moisturiser, which means less chance to react.

Wear your SPF – Always and forever.

Your skin works hard every day to look after you, so it's important to keep it protected so it can do its job well. SPF should always be your BFF. This is extra important for sensitive skin because it needs a little extra tender loving care to keep it healthy and happy. It’s extra, extra important for sensitive skin using retinol because it can make your skin more sun-sensitive. Our Daily Defence is our fave (obviously!) but use whatever works best for you and your sensitive skin.

Retinol is a very active ingredient so it will take time, but when it does, retinol actually can help to strengthen your skin and make it healthier. Give it a try, and remember—be patient with your skin, its always doing its very best to protect you.