So.. now that I’m in my mid-30s going into my 40s, I’ve been contemplating into getting botox or face lifts. However, aside from the costs it would take, I’m also wary of getting stuff in my face and not sure how it’s going to look in the long run. Let’s face it, we’ve seen too many botched surgeries to take such risks on our beautiful faces.
The next best thing to facelifts? Sunscreen and retinoids. Retinoids come in a lot of forms.. tretinoin.. retinol.. etc.. So we’ll be discussing the details below, including products that you can purchase here in the Philippines.
I’ve been using retinoid products for two years now and can definitely see the effects already. Tighter, plumper skin, less prominent brow lines, crow’s feet, and laugh lines. Smoother, and more youthful looking.
Okay so if you’re 40 it’s not gonna make you look like a twenty-year-old, BUT it’s sure as hell gonna make you look like the finest forty-year-old they’ve ever seen.
What are retinoids?
Retinoids are a class of chemical compounds that are derivatives of vitamin A.
They are used in skincare products to improve skin texture, reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and increase skin cell turnover.
They can be found in prescription-strength and over-the-counter skincare products and may cause skin irritation and sensitivity when first using them. Retinoids also treat acne, psoriasis, and other skin conditions.
Benefits of using retinoids for our skin
- Improves skin texture: Retinoids can stimulate collagen production, which helps to improve skin texture, reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and give the skin a smoother and more youthful appearance.
- Increases skin cell turnover: Retinoids can increase the rate at which skin cells turnover, which can help to reduce the appearance of dark spots, hyperpigmentation, and acne scars.
- Treats acne: Retinoids effectively treat acne by reducing the formation of comedones (clogged pores) and decreasing inflammation.
- Improves skin tone: Retinoids can help to even out skin tone by reducing the appearance of sunspots, age spots, and hyperpigmentation.
- Prevents premature aging: Retinoids can protect the skin from damage caused by environmental factors such as UV radiation, which can lead to premature aging.
Different types of retinoids
Retinol: The most commonly used type of retinoid in skincare products. It is a mild form of vitamin A that effectively reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, improves skin texture and tone, and increases skin cell turnover.
Retinaldehyde: A more potent form of vitamin A than retinol, but it is still considered gentle enough for use in most skincare products. It can effectively reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and improve skin texture and tone.
Retinyl Palmitate: A type of retinoid that is commonly used in over-the-counter skincare products. It is considered less potent than other forms of retinoids, but it can still effectively reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Tretinoin: A prescription-strength retinoid that is used to treat acne and other skin conditions. It is more potent than other forms of retinoids and can cause more side effects, such as skin irritation and sensitivity.
Adapalene: Another prescription-strength retinoid that is used to treat acne. It is considered to be gentler than tretinoin and may cause fewer side effects.
Tazarotene is a prescription-strength retinoid used to treat acne, psoriasis, and other skin conditions. It is more potent than other forms of retinoids and can cause more side effects, such as skin irritation and sensitivity.
How to use retinoids?
There are lots of ways to apply retinoids on your skin, but I’ll share with you how I effectively apply mine.
First, I use Sulwhasoo First Care Activating Serum to prep my skin and make sure every product is boosted and absorbed. Next, a generous layer of Hada Labo hyaluronic acid to serve as both a protectant and moisturizer for my skin, because retinoids can cause dryness and flakiness.
Then I get a pea-size (a big pea), and evenly apply on my face, and another half-pea for my neck.
I use this every other night before bedtime!
Ten Best Retinol Products Available in the Philippines
*in no particular order
#1 Good Molecules Gentle Retinol Cream
Contains a 0.5% concentration of retinol, which is a gentle yet effective concentration for those who are new to using retinol or who have sensitive skin.
Aside from retinol, this cream contains a blend of moisturizing ingredients, such as squalane and jojoba esters, to help hydrate and nourish the skin. It also contains antioxidants, such as green tea and vitamin E, which can help to protect the skin from damage caused by free radicals.
Get it here: Good Molecules Official on Lazada
#2 Klued 0.5% Retinol Serum
Klued is a proudly local retinol product made by skincareblogger @yourporeguy.
The product contains 0.5% retinol and other beneficial ingredients such as glycerin, grape seed oil, green tea leaf extract, sunflower seed oil, sweet almond oil, allantoin, panthenol, and tocopheryl acetate. Grape seed oil has antioxidant and hydrating properties, while green tea leaf extract is a rich source of catechins and epigallocatechin gallate, which have anti-inflammatory, moisturizing, and photoprotective effects on the skin.
Sunflower seed oil has been shown in studies to help preserve the skin’s integrity, improve hydration, and enhance skin barrier repair due to its composition of oleic and linoleic acids. Sweet almond oil, rich in fatty acids and triglycerides, has moisturizing and antioxidant effects.
Get it here: Klued Official on Lazada
#3 Cosrx The Retinol 0.1 Cream
Cosrx The Retinol 0.1 Cream is a skincare product formulated with 0.1% retinol, known for its potential benefits in improving the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and uneven skin tone. Its gradual-release formula makes it suitable for sensitive skin types and contains moisturizing ingredients such as hyaluronic acid and niacinamide to help hydrate the skin.
The cream has a lightweight texture, absorbs easily, and is typically recommended for advanced retinol users. It’s important to start with a patch test and introduce it gradually into your skincare routine while also wearing sunscreen during the day, as retinol can increase sun sensitivity. Consulting with a dermatologist or skincare professional can provide additional guidance on its use for your skin type and concerns.
Get it here: CosRX Official on Lazada
#4 Cerave Skin Renewing Retinol Serum
CeraVe Anti-Aging Retinol Serum is a skincare product that contains retinol, a derivative of vitamin A, known for its potential benefits in improving the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and uneven skin tone.
This serum is formulated with a gentle, slow-release retinol to minimize the risk of irritation, making it suitable for sensitive skin types. It also contains other skin-loving ingredients, such as hyaluronic acid and ceramides, which help to hydrate and nourish the skin, restoring its natural moisture barrier. The lightweight serum texture allows for easy absorption and can be used alone or layered with other skincare products.
Get it here: Cerave skin renewing retinol serum on Lazada
Kiehls Micro-Dose Anti-Aging Daily Retinol Face Serum is a skincare product formulated with a low concentration of retinol, a derivative of vitamin A known for its potential benefits in improving the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and uneven skin tone.
The serum is designed to be used daily and contains a micro-dose of retinol to minimize the risk of irritation, making it suitable for those with sensitive or beginner skin types. It also includes other skin-loving ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, peptides, and antioxidants to provide hydration, nourishment, and additional anti-aging benefits. The lightweight and fast-absorbing texture of the serum allows for easy application and layering with other skincare products.
Get it here: Kiehls Official on Lazada
#6 Drunk Elephant A-Passioni Retinol Cream
This cream is formulated with 1% retinol, making it suitable for advanced users. It also includes nourishing and hydrating ingredients such as peptides, jojoba oil, and vitamin F to help support the skin’s barrier and prevent dryness or irritation associated with retinol use. The cream has a lightweight texture and is designed for evening use, with a gradual introduction into the skincare routine to minimize the risk of irritation.
Get it here: Drunk Elephant on Lazada
#7 Innisfree Retinol Cica
Innisfree Retinol Cica is a skincare product that combines the benefits of retinol and cica (Centella asiatica) extract. Retinol is a derivative of vitamin A known for its potential anti-aging properties, while cica extract is known for its soothing effects on the skin.
This product is formulated with a gentle concentration of retinol, making it suitable for sensitive or beginner skin types. It also contains other nourishing and hydrating ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, shea butter, and green tea extract to provide hydration and help support the skin’s barrier.
The lightweight texture of the product allows for easy application and absorption into the skin.
Get it here: Innisfree Retinol Cica on Lazada
#8 A313 Vitamin A Cream
A313 is a vitamin A cream available over the counter in France and can also be purchased online without a prescription.
It is a topical treatment that contains retinoids, which are derivatives of vitamin A. Retinoids are known to effectively address various skin concerns such as fine lines, wrinkles, acne, pigmentation, uneven skin tone, and sun damage.
A313 is considered a pharmaceutical-grade product. It is used for topical application on the skin to provide the benefits of retinoids for improving the appearance and health of the skin.
Ingredients: PEG 400, PEG 4000, Polysorbate 80, Retinyl Palmitate 200,000 IU per cent
Get it here: A313 on Lazada
#9 The Inkey List Retinol Serum
The Inkey List Retinol Serum also includes other skin-nourishing ingredients such as squalane and hyaluronic acid to provide hydration and moisture to the skin, helping to minimize potential dryness or irritation associated with retinol use.
Get it here: The Inkey List Retinol Serum on Lazada
#10 In Her Element Deep Sleep Retinol Oil
The Deep Sleep Retinol Oil is a locally-made, lightweight, moisturizing oil that helps you wake up with glowy, smooth and revived skin.
It also has kendi oil and meadowfoam seed oil to moisturize and replenish your skin while you sleep.
Deep Sleep is special because they use hydrogenated retinol, a milder, slow-release form of retinol.
INGREDIENTS: Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, C15-19 Alkanes, C13-15 Alkane (Hemisqualane), Aleurites Moluccanus Seed (Kendi) Oil, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Hydrogenated Retinol, Dipropylene Glycol (and) Boswellia Serrata Gum, Limnanthes Alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil, Santalum Spicatum (Sandalwood) Seed Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Ethylhexylglycerin, Fragrance
Get it here: IHE Website
Here is my most recent, unedited selfie. Not bad for someone in their mid-30s right? I use A31, the popular French skincare product. While ~technically~ it’s not available in the Philippines, there are a lot of resellers online, just make sure you buy from a trustworthy one.
Happy shopping! (Let me know if I missed anything though!)