Whether they contain a synergistic blend of ingredients that complement one another or are made with time-release abilities to have a gradual and prolonged effect on skin, here are the best retinol products to try for visible results, sans irritation.
1 / 13 These products have skin-soothing ingredients and gentle formulations.Read more
2 / 13 Cle de Peau Beaute Wrinkle Correcting Concentrate ($230 for 20ml)Read more
Formulated to improve the depth and length of visible wrinkles, this targeted anti-wrinkle serum uses pure retinol to stimulate collagen synthesis and maintain skin elasticity. Use directly on areas of concern, particularly around the eyes, glabellar lines and nasolabial folds to improve even deep wrinkles which have formed due to repeated facial expressions. It is also fortified with the brand’s Illuminating Complex which boosts hydration and radiance at the same time.
Photo: Cle de Peau Beaute
3 / 13 Drunk Elephant A-Passioni Retinol Cream ($105 for 30ml)Read more
Thanks to a combination of retinol and a blend of peptides, botanical oils and antioxidants, the skin-replenishing benefits of retinol are bolstered in this new formula from Drunk Elephant, which also minimises redness and irritation. Peptides restore skin resilience and improve skin clarity, botanical oils repair the skin barrier layer for better moisture retention while antioxidants shield skin against environmental hazards for a healthier, smoother, plumper and more refined complexion. Plus, it comes with a deluxe-sized B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Serum to keep skin supple.
Photo: Drunk Elephant
4 / 13 Pixi Retinol Tonic ($22 for 100ml)Read more
Following its best-selling Glow Tonic, which accelerates cellular turnover withglycolic acid, the Retinol Tonic is a toner that gently and gradually renews skin with continued use. Over time, this blend of retinol and jasmine flower reinforces skin’s moisture barrier, improves skin radiance and even softens the appearance of wrinkles.
(Also read: 16 Best Toners For Oily And Acne-Prone Skin)
5 / 13 Peter Thomas Roth Retinol Fusion Pm Night Serum ($115 for 30ml)Read more
Featuring encapsulated retinol, vitamin C and vitamin E, this nighttime serum gradually releases retinol into your skin for a gentler effect. Plus, vitamins C and E also provide skin-brightening, antioxidants, moisture-retention and skin-firming benefits for a healthier, younger-looking complexion.
Photo: Peter Thomas Roth
6 / 13 First Aid Beauty Skin Lab Retinol Serum .25 Per Cent Pure Concentrate ($95 for 30ml)Read more
Perfect for first-timers or those with sensitive skin types, this gentle formula features the brand’s proprietary Skin Saver Complex to ensure maximum benefits with minimum irritation. Furthermore, it is also fortified with sensitive skin-friendly ingredients like hyaluronic acid, aloe, colloidal oatmeal, allantoin and ceramides, which soothe, boost hydration and improves moisture retention. Plus, vitamins C and E also condition, brighten and protects the skin.
Photo: First Aid Beauty
7 / 13 Shiseido Vital-perfection Wrinklelift Cream ($160 for 15g)Read more
Designed to be used specifically on visible wrinkles, this wrinkle-correcting cream uses Shiseido’s Vp8 technology to deliver pure retinol deep into skin layers to speed up collagen production so fine lines and wrinkles are smoothed. At the same time, it also protects skin against moisture loss and improves skin radiance.
8 / 13 Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping Night Oil ($148 for 35ml)Read more
Featuring a retinol ester complex, this overnight face oil reduces the appearance of ageing like fine lines, enlarged pores, rough skin, age spots and dullness for a revitalised complexion. Moreover, it is infused with blue tansy and German chamomile essential oils to help soothe skin and neutralise any signs of irritation. Botanical extracts also further condition and nourish skin for your healthiest skin yet.
Photo: Sunday Riley
9 / 13 Dermalogica Overnight Retinol Repair ($190 for 30ml)Read more
Featuring microencapsulated 0.5 per cent pure retinol, the skin-renewing ingredient is slowly released into the skin as you get your sleep to work in tandem with your body’s self-renewal cycle. Moreover, vitamin C improves skin discolouration, bioenergised copper amino acid complex improves skin firmness and ceramides strengthens skin’s barrier function. To use, mix one part of the Overnight Retinol Repair with a maximum of three parts of the Buffer Cream enclosed before applying onto cleansed, dry skin. Also, avoid mixing with other products when using this to reduce the risk of irritation.
10 / 13 StriVectin Advanced Retinol Intensive Night Moisturiser ($170 for 50ml)Read more
As one of the authorities in retinol use in skincare, StriVectin has improved the formulations of its retinol products consistently over the years. Thanks to its proprietary Nia-114 technology, this nighttime moisturiser optimises the efficacy of retinol while fortifying skin’s moisture barrier and keeping environmental hazards at bay. It also contains Copper Tripeptides to deliver the benefits of retinol without any irritation for younger-looking skin.
(Also read: 8 Best Brightening Moisturisers For Every Age Group)
11 / 13 Pestle & Mortar Superstar Retinol Night Oil ($174 for 30ml)Read more
If you want a product that serves the purpose of a retinol serum but gives your skin the nourishment of a face oil, look no further. With a base of cold pressed grape seed oil, it combines two non-irritating retinol derivatives, so your skin drinks it up sans irritation to reduce pore size, boost elasticity and improve skin luminosity.
(Also read: Best Skincare Products to Unclog And Minimise Pores)
Photo: Pestle & Mortar
12 / 13 Tata Harper Retinoic Nutrient Face Oil ($171 for 30ml)Read more
Another choice pick for those who prefer an oil format, this one blends rosehip seed oil, with retinoic acid to transform dull and rough skin into a plump and bright complexion. Plus, the brand’s Estate Grown Beauty Complex also features extracts of arnica, borage, alfalfa, elderberry, meadowsweet and calendula to replenish skin with essentials minerals, vitamins and fatty acids for a healthier, more resilient complexion.
Photo: Tata Harper
13 / 13 Dr. Dennis Gross Ferulic & Retinol Wrinkle Recovery Overnight Serum ($126 for 30ml)Read more
Taking a two-pronged approach to anti-ageing, this powerful serum features a combination of ferulic acid and retinol to firm and reduce the appearance of wrinkles while you get your beauty sleep. Super antioxidant ferulic acid neutralises free radicals that have accumulated over the day while retinol stimulates collagen renewal for healthier, brighter and smoother skin. It is also supercharged with niacinamide, which optimises the performance of the other ingredients, minimises irritation and enhances skin glow.
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