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Retinoids – the Gold Standard in topical anti-ageing products

Retinoids – the Gold Standard in topical anti-ageing products

retinoids as the fountain of youth

It’s no secret I’m a huge fan and advocate for the use of retinoids in your skincare routine. If you’re looking for a product that is proven to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, improve pigmentation, skin texture, treat acne and breakouts, increase collagen and generally improve your skin’s health and appearance, then the group of products known as retinoids is your new best friend!

I’ve spent the last couple of years studying for my Masters’s in Clinical Dermatology, with a specific focus on how retinoids actually work and how effective they are at treating the signs of photo damage.

A little bit of history…

Retinol serum and cream to use nightly for skincare and anti-ageing

Vitamin A derivatives, at the time being studied for their use in acne, were incidentally noted to improve the appearance of the signs of aging in those subjects enrolled. This generated intense interest at the time given their promise as an answer to the aging process…touted as the ‘elixir of youth’.

They were first studied for the specific indication of photoaging in the 1980s and the evidence quickly grew supporting their ability to reverse the damage caused by UV exposure in the skin.

Over the last 4 decades, retinoids have continued to demonstrate a safe and effective topical treatment for photoaging.

What are retinoids?

Retinoids are any molecule that interacts with retinoid receptors, and they fall into either natural or synthetic categories. In the skin, once applied topically, retinoids interact with their receptors to ultimately regulate the expression of genes involved in cellular differentiation and proliferation.

The available retinoids we have to include; tretinoin (AKA ReTrieve cream), retinol, retinyl palmitate, retinaldehyde, tazarotene, and adapalene (there are others but their use in photo-aging is limited). They’re available in varying strengths and each has differing characteristics, for example, adapalene is also highly effective in the management of acne, and acts more predominantly via the follicle.

retinoids for anti-ageing

Depending on which retinoid you use, it may have to undergo conversion in the skin to the active form, and there are risks of transient side effects such as skin irritation, redness and flaking – but don’t worry, these disappear with continued use, and you can reduce the chance of side effects by using a more gentle formulation. It should also be noted that while retinoids are safe and effective, they shouldn’t be used while pregnant or breastfeeding.

If you’re interested to learn more, follow this link to access my dissertation…it covers all the important facts about retinoids, their evidence for use, and compares the different retinoids to see which is best! I’m also going to add further info about specific retinoids to the Journal in due course, so check back for more information soon!

As always, let me know if you have questions, this is an area I’m passionate about and I love sharing my knowledge to help you!

Masters in Clinical Dermatology Dissertation. This PDF download is provided for personal use and is the intellectual property of Dr. Sarah Tranter  and Dr. Tranter Aesthetics. It cannot be copied or reproduced without permission.

The Efficacy and Safety of Topical Retinoids for preventing and reversing the effects of photoageing (pdf)

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