Retinol is a type of retinoid (Vitamin A derivative) and is often considered the "holy grail" of anti-ageing skincare. There is a lot of scientific evidence and years of clinical experience backing it as one of the most effective anti-ageing skin care ingredients.
Retinol helps increase skin cell turnover rate for continued skin renewal and to improve skin complexion. This is important as the usual 28-day cell turnover rate is prolonged as our skin ages, resulting in duller-looking skin that takes longer to shed from the skin surface.
People with dry or sensitive skin should introduce retinol with caution. This means in lower concentrations and build up slowly over time, using a moisturiser or soothing serums applied afterwards to counteract irritation.
Retinoids is an umbrella term for the class of Vit-A derivatives. There are four main types of retinoids used in anti-ageing skincare. In order from the least to the most potent of the retinoids are retinyl palmitate, retinol, retinaldehyde and retinoic acid.
Start with a lower concentration and build up slowly with time. Retinol in cream or gel-based formulations are better for those with oily skin prone to breakouts. Oil-based formulations are better for those with dry skin and prone to irritancy.
Sun damage by far, is the most common cause of premature wrinkling, with Aussie women most likely to experience fastest premature skin ageing and wrinkles due to the naturally high UV exposure levels in Australia.
Caffeine – best in coffee, not in anti-ageing creams. May have anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, but rarely produces satisfactory anti-ageing results, such as improvement in pigmentation. I would put collagen supplements on top of this list too.