A, B, C, D, E, K. If you had to choose, which vitamin will you choose for your skin?
Like most people, I chose Vitamin C. I was wrong. Doctors are increasingly prescribing Vitamin A based skincare over others. Here’s are some of the reasons why:
- 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
But there are different Vitamin A formulas for skin. Here’s how you can use it.
RETINOIC ACID – This is one of the first ingredients used for acne, and is usually found in prescription formulas and has a direct biological effect on the skin – the vital ingredient that fights aging visibly. These prescription-strength formulas can be 100-times stronger compared to over-the-counter retinol products.
RETINOL – Usually the form of Vitamin A available in over-the-counter products, retinols need to be converted by special enzymes into the active retinoic acid to achieve an effect. Retinol is more mild and better tolerated/less irritating to the skin compared to retinoic acid. Not surprisingly, one will also need more time to see results with retinol compared to the prescription-grade formulas. Most dermatologists believe that this is the single ingredient you really need to see in your Vitamin A over-the-counter product.
Even though retinols are milder, they often irritate the skin when you first start to use it. Choose the mildest retinol cream you can find, or mix it with your moisturizer when you first begin, and build it up slowly.