The Skincare Benefits of Vitamin A

Retinols & Retinoids & Retinyls oh my!

Vitamin A is often touted as the anti-ageing miracle solution. No need to concern yourself with the reasons and machinations behind this, just trust in the process and believe…

We jest, of course, however this blind faith can lead to disastrous results, particularly with something as potentially volatile to sensitive skin havers as vitamin A.

With that in mind, it may behove one to familiarise oneself with the risks and rewards associated with vitamin A, for there are both in equal measure.

Let’s start with the basics. Vitamin A is a powerful nutrient required by the body to maintain healthy eye, skin and immune function, not to mention its potent reproductive health support. Vitamin A can be found in a variety of ways and chances are if you are enjoying a balanced diet, you will be receiving enough to not have to concern yourself too much.

When we are referring to vitamin A in the context of skincare, its form changes slightly. Retinoids, retinols, retinyl’s and in extreme cases retinoic acid is a formulation of vitamin A stabilised to be suitable for topical treatment and is listed in the table of contents as such.

So now we know that, let’s dive into how vitamin A, or retinols, can improve our skin situation.

REDUCES APPEARENCE OF WRINKLES & FINE LINES

A retinol applied topically has the effect of bolstering the skins production of collagen, which falters slightly as we age. Collagen is essentially a form of protein needed to form the building blocks of new skin cells, without which our skin sags under its own weight. Stimulated collagen productions means new, fresh skin cells to plump out an d fill in our wrinkles.

REGULATES OIL PRODUCTION

A retinol has exfoliative properties, giving it the ability to gently remove dead skin cells and excess dirt and grime. In addition, vitamin A is powerful antioxidant making it a perfect choice for fighting free radical damage which often leads to inflammation, a major benefactor for the exacerbation of acne. By decreasing inflammation and balancing the skin surface, vitamin A can play a major role in reversing symptoms of acne.

REDUCES SIGNS OF HYPERPIGMENTATION

Vitamin A encourages to production of skin cells and expedites cell turnover, giving way to fresh, new and healthy skin. All of this is to say that a retinol can help resurface the dermis and help reduce signs of hyperpigmentation.

RISKS OF USING A VITAMIN A TREATMENT

While there are many benefits to including a vitamin A treatment in your skincare routine, there are risks involved as well.

For those with certain skin conditions such as rosacea and eczema, potential side effects include a worsening of symptoms. For some marginal cases, vitamin A can also lead to dry skin, redness and itching.

Vitamin A generally leads to an increased sensitivity to UV light as well so it will benefit you greatly to apply an SPF when using a vitamin A treatment.

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