Doctors say that Vitamin A is fast becoming an essential to feed your skin in order to get a beautiful glow.
Here are some of the reasons why this multi-tasking ingredient is a must-have for anyone dreaming of a clear and smoother complexion:
- Penetrates deeply to stimulate fibroblasts – cells that produce collagen, reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
- Unclogs pores, reduces oil production and therefore reduces acne
- Exfoliates and increases skin cell turnover, evening out skin tone
- Lightens sun damage and pigmentation
Are All Vitamin A Formulas Made The Same?
For anyone confused by the abundance of Vitamin A products available off the shelf, there are basically 3 retinoids (the umbrella term for Vitamin A products) that we really care about.
RETINOIC ACID – this is usually found in prescription formulas and has a direct biological effect on the skin – the vital ingredient that fights aging visibly. This is the active ingredient used in tretinoin creams available through prescription only to treat acne. These prescription-strength formulas can be 100-times stronger compared to over-the-counter retinol products.
RETINOL – retinol and retinoic acid are related but different. Retinols need to be converted by special enzymes into the active retinoic acid to achieve an effect. Retinol is usually what’s available in most over-the-counter products. Biochemically they are very similar, but retinol is more mild and better tolerated/less irritating to the skin compared to retinoic acid. However, the degree of response is also less, and more time is required to see benefits. Most dermatologists believe that this is the single ingredient you really need to see in your Vitamin A over-the-counter product.
PRO-RETINOLS – these are derivatives and are the most gentle but they are also a lot weaker.
A tip – many over-the-counter products claim that results can be seen in weeks, the truth is you will need approximately 3 months for retinoic acid to produce a noticeable difference, so stick around for at least this long to reap its benefits!