Facts About Retinol Face Cream

Written by jonita davis
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Retinol cream is known as a wrinkle treatment, but it has uses beyond cosmetic. Its effectiveness apparently stems from its ability to make healthier skin cells. The substance is derived from vitamin A, a vital nutrient.


Retinol has uses outside of wrinkle removal. It is also used to treat sunburns and acne. According to the Acne Resource Center, this is because retinol aids in cellular reproduction, which is needed to heal sunburned skin. The Acne Resource Center also states that the chemical helps shed the superficial skin cells that develop alongside pimples.

An Antioxidant from Vitamin A

The Mayo Clinic describes retinol as an antioxidant. An antioxidant helps protect against carcinogens that can break down a cell, according to the National Institutes of Health. It is derived from a vitamin---vitamin A. According to the Mayo Clinic, vitamin A is essential in growing cells. Pregnant women and people taking vitamin A oral supplements should consult their doctors before using retinol.

Evidence for Retinol

A retinol derivative, tretinoin, is a approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a topical treatment for acne and sunburn. It has also been studied by the Michigan University Medical School and found to "improve the appearance of ageing skin".

Cosmetic Facts

The Acne Resource Center states that retinol causes the body to produce collagen needed to "fill" wrinkles formed by ageing. The collagen production also shrinks pores and softens skin.

Vitamin A poisoning

Retinol is also available in an oral form, used for treating acne. The Mayo Clinic urges care in using this product and others like the retinol creams simultaneously because of the risk of vitamin A toxicity. Consult your doctor before using vitamin A supplements, creams or retinol-based medications, in any combination, to ensure that you are not at risk for vitamin A poisoning.

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