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retinol

If there’s one product that really gets stuff done, it’s retinol. It’s like the wrinkle-fighting, pore-minimizing, oil-controlling, skin-perfecting miracle cure, and along with red light, probably one of the most effective at-home anti-aging formulas out there.

Retinoids work to speed up surface skin cell turnover, which makes way for new cells. Not only does retinol boost collagen production, but it also helps to prevent the breakdown of collagen in the first place, thereby keeping wrinkles away. It’s also one of the most effective ways of getting rid of hyperpigmentation, dark spots, and acne scars. Like we said, it’s kind of the cure-all of the beauty industry (although if you have rosacea or very sensitive skin, you do need to be wary).

So now you know why we dig retinol, let us introduce you to one of our fave new formulas: The Inkey List’s Retinol, $13. If you’re familiar with The Ordinary, then you’re about to fall in love with the new ultra-affordable skincare collection from The Inkey List, who offer some of our fave beauty heroes at affordable prices. While most ‘affordable’ retinols still come in at the $30-plus price range, we’re shook with the results from this $13 retinol. The Inkey List have combined 1% stable retinol and 0.5% granactive retinoid (retinol’s more potent sibling) with one of our all-time favorite oils, squalane, to hydrate and soothe the skin. The slow-release formula reduces irritation while providing effective active delivery. We also love the gel-like texture for application.

While retinol can take up to a couple of months to show impressive results – more even skin tone and minimized fine lines – we noticed a difference every morning. Whether it helped to make skin tone appear more even, reduce inflammation of pimples, or help control oil – seriously, if you have oily skin you will not regret this – it was an overnight success.

Our tips:

  • Use in the evening after double cleansing and toning, and before any serums or night creams.
  • Start using this a few times a week for the first two weeks, then gradually increase use over the next month until you’re using it most nights. Retinol can be drying and can make your skin more sensitive, which is why you need to slowly build up your skin’s tolerance of it.
  • Don’t forget to wear SPF during the day as well – there’s no point trying to fix your skin if you’re going to let the sun undo all your hard work! Check out these SPF myths you need to know.

If you’re looking for something affordable and effective for either dark spots, hyperpigmentation, anti-aging, acne-scars, or oily skin control, we highly recommend this! Let us know if you’ve tried anything from the new skincare brand in the comments below. x