Dr. Shweta Lamba

A woman with headline text on retinol mistakes

Retinol is the best skincare product you can use for youthful glowing skin, preventing acne, and fading out hyperpigmentation. And it gets expert approval – almost every top dermatologist recommends using it!

It’s basically like a lucky charm for your skin.

But you need to use retinol, a top notch anti-ageing agent, effectively to get the sparkling flawless look. Here are the common retinol mistakes that we see:

Biggest Retinol Mistakes 

#1 You Think Retinol & Vitamin C Are A No-No Together

This myth originates from the fact that Vitamin C, especially Ascorbic Acid, exists in its stable form in an acidic pH and an acidic pH can deactivate retinol. But there is no scientific evidence to back this claim. Retinol occurs naturally in our skin, which itself has a slightly acidic pH. According to a recent research study, not only is Retinol + Vitamin C pairing effective, but a match made in heaven as Vitamin C stabilizes Retinol. They work together to protect and brighten the skin. Recent research tells us that skincare is rarely about one superhero ingredient since our skin requirements are many, so choose your skincare playmates wisely!

Best Retinol Product With Vitamin C

Red Vine Night Gel Crème

With Retinol, Mulberries & Vitamin C


#2 You Mistake Skin Reactions For Intolerance

People often think they should drop retinol from their skincare arsenal because they experience flaking, redness, or skin irritation when they first start using it. This potent product can definitely cause peeling but don’t stop usage completely – just switch to a lower strength formula or reduce the frequency of application. That’s how your skin becomes bright, clear, and luminous. Dermatologists say that clinically, it takes 2-3 weeks for skin cells to adapt to retinol but the key is consistency.

If you are a retinol virgin, you should begin with a low concentration product, no matter what your skin goals are. It’s advisable to start with a 0.1% retinol product twice a week. After a couple of weeks, increase the application to thrice a week. Once your skin begins to tolerate it, increase the usage till you eventually apply it every single day. Similarly, you can slowly graduate to a higher concentration of retinol.

Pro-tip: if you have dry or mature skin, it is recommended you use heavier retinol cream while lighter serums like the Retinol & Hyaluronic Acid LIFT & FIRM serum are best suited for oily, acne-prone, or dull skin.

Best Retinol Serum For Youthful Skin

Lift & Firm Serum

With Retinol, Hyaluronic Acid & Pomegranate


#3 You Think Retinol Is A Skin Exfoliant

It’s a common myth that retinol is an exfoliant. This Vitamin A derivative is actually a powerful antioxidant that occurs naturally in our skin. A key skincare player, retinol works by accelerating cellular turnover rate to reveal new, brighter, and even-toned skin, armed with increased levels of collagen and elastin. The result is radiant skin that is stronger and smoother.

#4 You Assume Retinol Shouldn’t Be Used During The Day

Retinol can be used during the day but only under broad spectrum sunscreen, including retinol products that are combined with Vitamins A, C, and E complex. The key here is that no matter what superhero ingredients you use, a broad spectrum sunscreen like White Lotus Sunscreen SPF 50 is your skin’s best friend as it also protects your skin from photo-ageing.

#5 You Avoid Using Retinol & Chemical Exfoliants Together

There is no research that says chemical exfoliants (AHAs and BHAs) cannot be used in the same skincare regime. And neither do AHAs and BHAs render the retinol ineffective. AHAs and BHAs exfoliate the dead cells from the surface of the skin, prepping it for the absorption of Retinol more effectively.

We have several Retinol options at Pilgrim and would love to help you out with one that’s perfect for you

Best K-Beauty Retinol Night Cream

Retinol Night Cream

With Vitamin C & Hyaluronic Acid


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