How to use (and when to avoid) the retinol eye cream
The ally for a smoother, brighter look, however, goes hand in hand with sunscreen
Reading time: 3 min
We previously told you about retinol benefits on facial skin. This vitamin A-derived molecule, which our skin already produces naturally, helps regulate pigmentation because it increases collagen production and improves cell turnover. When used consistently, for at least 10 weeks, skin looks smoother, brighter and younger because retinol goes a long way toward correcting wrinkles, minimizing fine lines. The latest innovation, however, is not a reformulated cream, but the retinol-based eye contour, with a much lighter formulation because the eye area is thinner and more sensitive than face area. As much as it will make the eye contour look younger and less tired, smoothing out wrinkles and dark spots, it may prove initially “tricky.” That’s why you should always ask your dermatologist if it’s a good idea to use it on your skin type, and when. We explain why.
Eye area is delicate
Being the part of the face where the skin is thinnest and most sensitive, not all people can afford a rejuvenating treatment with retinol cream. Normally, when you start using this quintessential anti-aging molecule, you might feel a slight redness in the affected part. And this is completely normal because the skin needs time to get used to the work done by vitamin A. On the eye area, however, especially for those with sensitive skin, many formulations could irritate the area, giving a temporary “panda” effect and swelling. Just a bit of product should be tried in an area close to the eye, to test the reaction in advance. We at SOTHERGA recommend Age Reversal Eye Complex by Dermalogica, which is gentle even for sensitive skin. You can find it at SOTHERGA Lab.
When to use it
Start trying it when you are not exposing yourself to the sun. That’s because retinol should always and only be applied at night, before bedtime-making the skin photosensitive, and could irritate it if not rinsed well in the morning. The always-match-allay: a high-protection SPF, to be applied in the morning, even if you’re well away from basking on the beach by now. Remember, too, that skin’s tolerance to retinol increases gradually. Start by applying the treatment once a week. In case of good tolerability, frequency of applications can be increased in the following weeks, until you reach daily application, every evening, with a gentle massage.
And if your skin really cannot tolerate retinol?
Try Bakuchiol, a plant ingredient that is the alternative to retinol and has a similar effect in anti-aging and stimulating collagen production. Plus, being extracted from the oil of the Indian Babchi plant, it also has anti-inflammatory properties for which it is among the favored ingredients in Ayurvedic medicine.