Retinol substitutes summary; Davin’s Tips.
Here are my favourite go to tips on retinol substitutes:
- Vitamin C builds collagen & it is better than retinol for UV protection.
- Azelaic acid is the go to ingredient for senscitive skin.
- Vitamin B3 is a great ingredient to reduce skin inflammation.
- Squalene is one of the best cleansers.
- Bakuchiol is a substitute for those who can’t tolerate retinol.
- Glycolic acid is a brilliant toner.
- Salicylic acid is an excellent exfoliator.
What is vitamin C & why is it great as part of your skincare routine?
Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is a powerful antioxidant that can provide many benefits for the skin when applied topically.
- Collagen synthesis: Vitamin C is essential for the production of collagen, a protein that gives skin its structure and elasticity. By promoting collagen synthesis, vitamin C can help to improve the skin’s firmness, reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and improve overall skin texture.
- Brightening: Vitamin C is known for its ability to brighten the skin and even out skin tone. It can help to reduce the appearance of age spots, hyperpigmentation, and other types of discoloration.
- Sun protection: Vitamin C can help to protect the skin from damage caused by UV rays and environmental toxins. It can also help to repair skin damage caused by sun exposure.
- Anti-inflammatory: Vitamin C has anti-inflammatory properties that can help to reduce redness and inflammation associated with ageing skin, acne and other skin conditions.
- Antioxidant properties: Vitamin C neutralises free radicals, molecules that can damage cells and contribute to ageing. By neutralising free radicals, vitamin C can help to protect the skin from damage and promote healthy ageing.
It’s important to note that Vitamin C can be unstable and can easily be degraded by light and air. It’s recommended to use Vitamin C products that are packaged in airtight, opaque containers to protect the Vitamin C from light and air. Also, it’s best to use a product with a pH close to the pH of the skin, to ensure optimal absorption and effectiveness.
How to start vitamin C?
Starting a vitamin C skincare routine can help to improve the overall appearance of your skin. Here are some steps to follow when starting a vitamin C skincare routine:
- Consult with a professional: It’s always best to consult with a qualified professional to determine which vitamin C product and strength is best for your specific skin type and condition. They can also recommend a suitable skincare routine and advise on any precautions you should take.
- Start with a low strength: If you haven’t used vitamin C products before, it’s important to start with a low-strength product and work your way up to a higher strength. This will help your skin to adjust to the vitamin C and reduce the risk of irritation. For beginners, start with 10%, intermediate experience 15% & experts at 20%.
- Cleanse and moisturise: Cleanse your skin thoroughly and apply a moisturiser before applying the vitamin C product.
- Use a small amount: Apply a small amount of vitamin C product to the face, using a pea-sized amount for the entire face.
- Use sunscreen: Use sunscreen with at least SPF 30 during the day to protect your skin from UV rays.
- Use it consistently: To see the best results, it’s important to use the product consistently, as per the instructions, and to be patient as it can take several weeks to see an improvement in the appearance of the skin.
What is niacinamide & how does it work on the skin?
Niacinamide, also known as vitamin B3, is a skincare ingredient that can have various benefits for the skin. It can help to improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, even out skin tone, and reduce the look of dark spots. It can also help to strengthen the skin barrier, which can improve the overall health and appearance of the skin. Additionally, niacinamide has been shown to help reduce the redness and inflammation associated with certain skin conditions, such as rosacea and eczema. It is also a good ingredient for acne-prone skin, as it can help to control excess oil production.
What is bakuchiol?
Bakuchiol is a plant-based compound that is similar in structure to retinol, a commonly used anti-aging ingredient. Bakuchiol is a natural alternative to retinol and is derived from the seeds and leaves of the babchi plant. Bakuchiol has been found to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, and has been shown to be effective in treating a variety of skin concerns, including:
- Anti-aging: Bakuchiol can help to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by promoting collagen production and smoothing out the skin’s texture.
- Brightening: Bakuchiol can help to even out skin tone and reduce the appearance of dark spots and other forms of hyperpigmentation.
- Acne-fighting: Bakuchiol has been found to be effective in reducing acne and preventing future breakouts by unclogging pores and reducing inflammation.
- Suitable for sensitive skin: Bakuchiol is considered to be gentler on the skin compared to Retinol, and is less likely to cause irritation and dryness.
- Non-photosensitizing: Bakuchiol does not increase the skin’s sensitivity to UV rays, allowing it to be used during the day, unlike retinol.
It’s important to note that bakuchiol is a relatively new skincare ingredient, and more research is needed to fully understand its effectiveness and long-term effects on the skin. Bakuchiol is not as effective as retinol and retinoids, but it can be useful if you have sensitive skin.
Why is azelaic acid a great skincare ingredient?
Azelaic acid is a naturally occurring dicarboxylic acid that is found in whole grains, such as barley, wheat, and rye. It is also produced by a yeast called Malassezia furfur, which is commonly found on the skin. Azelaic acid is often used as an ingredient in skincare products to help improve the appearance of the skin.
Azelaic acid has been shown to be effective in the treatment of mild to moderate acne, as it helps to reduce the number of pimples and blackheads, and also helps to improve the overall appearance of the skin. It also has anti-inflammatory properties, which can help to reduce redness and irritation associated with acne.
In addition to its benefits for acne-prone skin, azelaic acid can also help to improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and also help to even out skin tone by decreasing hyperpigmentation. It can also help to improve the texture of the skin, giving it a smoother and more youthful appearance. Glycolic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) that is derived from sugar cane. It is often used in anti-aging skincare products because of its ability to help improve the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and uneven skin tone.
Why is squalene the ingredient suitable for all skin types?
Squalene is a natural oil that is found in high concentrations in the skin. It plays a number of important roles, including helping to keep the skin moisturised, protecting it from environmental damage, and supporting the skin’s natural immune system. Squalene is also a key component of sebum, the oil that is produced by the skin’s sebaceous glands. This oil helps to keep the skin hydrated and supple, and also helps to protect it from harmful bacteria and other microorganisms. Additionally, Squalene is a powerful antioxidant that can help to protect the skin from damage caused by free radicals, which are molecules that can damage cells and contribute to the development of various skin conditions.
Chemical exfoliation with salicylic acid
Salicylic acid is a type of beta hydroxy acid (BHA) that is commonly used in skincare products. It can help to improve the appearance and health of the skin in several ways:
- Exfoliation: Salicylic acid can help to exfoliate the skin by breaking down the bonds between dead skin cells, which can improve the texture and tone of the skin.
- Acne treatment: Salicylic acid can help to reduce the appearance of acne by unclogging pores and reducing inflammation.
- Reduces appearance of pores: Salicylic acid can help to shrink the appearance of pores, which can make the skin look smoother and more even.
- Anti-aging: Salicylic acid can help to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by stimulating collagen production.
- Dandruff: Salicylic acid is also found in some dandruff shampoos which can help to exfoliate the scalp and reduce the amount of dead skin cells that contribute to the development of dandruff.
It’s important to note that Salicylic acid can cause dryness and irritation, specially when used in high concentrations or if your skin is sensitive, it’s recommended to start with a low concentration and see how your skin reacts. Also, it’s a good idea to use sunscreen and avoid sun exposure while using products containing salicylic acid.
Why incorporate glycolic acid into my skincare routine?
Glycolic acid works by exfoliating the top layer of dead skin cells, revealing the brighter, smoother, and more youthful skin underneath. This exfoliation process also helps to increase collagen production, which can help to plump up the skin and reduce the appearance of wrinkles.
Glycolic acid can also help to even out skin tone by reducing the appearance of dark spots and hyperpigmentation. This can be beneficial for those with age spots, sun damage, or melasma.
Additionally, glycolic acid can also help to improve the overall texture of the skin, making it look and feel smoother. It also allows other skincare products to penetrate deeper into the skin, helping them to be more effective.
It’s important to note that glycolic acid can make your skin more sensitive to the sun, so it is recommended to use sunscreen while using it. And also, it’s important to start with lower concentrations of glycolic acid and gradually increase to prevent irritation.
Where to start?
Book a consultation with my team at Cutis Dermatology. Our nurses will implement a skin care routine based upon your goals. Note: my work is entirely procedural, namely I cut, inject, lase & do scarry stuff. For skin consultatoins a dedicted 20 mintues is required & hence my team will take over your care post procedure.