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What is retinol? Everything you need to know.

What is retinol? Everything you need to know.

What is retinol? How does it help skin? Keep reading to see why this potent ingredient is one of our favorite anti-aging skin care ingredients.


What is retinol?

Retinol is a skin care ingredients derived from vitamin A, which occurs naturally in the skin. This skin transforming ingredient is a gold standard ingredient in the skin care industry and has many different benefits. The most common skin concerns over-the-counter retinol products are designed to tackle are anti-aging concerns, like wrinkles and uneven skin tone.


Time released retinol

We use "time released retinol" in our anti-aging Sleepwear and Oil Control Sleepwear to maximize benefits to the skin and minimize the risks. Time released retinol is retinol that features time‐released microencapsulation technology. What this means is that the retinol is encased and protected as it penetrates your skin. This technology benefits the skin in 2 ways:

  • It helps reduce the irritation and flaking sometimes associated with retinol.
  • It ensures that the formula keeps working over a gradual period of time, over six hours, instead of being delivered all at once, ensuring maximum benefits.


Retinol benefits

Over-the-counter retinol has many different benefits to the skin:

  • Improves firmness by helping connective tissues weave together and become denser.
  • Reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
  • Smoothes and reduces rough skin texture
  • Improves the appearance of pigmented spots
  • Makes pores appear smaller by promoting cell turnover

There are also prescription strength retinoids that combat acne or resistive skin, but they require a trip to the dermatologist.


How does retinol work?

Retinol promotes the surface cells of your skin to turn over and die quicker, making way for brand new skin cells.

"Your skin is constantly shedding skin cells. When this happens, smoother, brighter cells underneath push their way up to the skin's surface. However, the older we get, the slower our cells turn over and this leads to problems like rough skin texture and more prominent wrinkles." –Teresa Stenzel, Bioelements Director of Education

This superstar ingredient also hampers the breakdown of collagen – a huge bonus for both active anti-aging action and preventative care. Retinol also works to firm the skin from the inside out:

This firming action combined with increased cell turnover helps tackle pesky fine lines and wrinkles, appearance of pores, rough texture and more.

Professionals recommend layering sunscreen over your retinol if you apply during the day, or using it at night. "Derived from vitamin A, retinol is light-sensitive and therefore most effective at night, or during the day with a broad spectrum SPF layered over it." –Teresa Stenzel


Retinol products

Many high quality anti-aging products include retinol, like three of our favorites:


Age Activist Clinical Youth Serum

Bioelements NEW anti-aging serum, Age Activist Clinical Youth Serum, uses microencapsulated retinol to heal, strengthen, brighten and refine skin while minimizing line and wrinkles.  Clinical studies show a 38% reduction in the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, roughness and age spots in over 95% of test subjects (1).

Age Activist Clinical Youth Serum uses a coalition of other youth-advocating ingredients, like peptides, fermented pumpkin and more, to provide all-in-one anti-aging. Learn more now.



This overnight skin care creme uses retinol along with calcium, peptides and cranberry seed oil to smooth skin as you sleep. It dramatically improves moisture, tone, and the appearance of lines and wrinkles. With this trusted "dream team" formula, dry skin awakens replenished and reenergized for a youthful glow.


Oil Control Sleepwear

Anti-aging is for all skin types – not just dry. This overnight treatment creme works while you sleep to control oil as it smoothes the appearance of lines and wrinkles. Oil-rich skin awakens energized, with needed hydration. Collagen and elastin are rewarded. Firmness reclaimed. Skin is more youthful, more rested and ready to face the day.


If you have any questions about time released retinol, sign up for our email newsletter or comment below!


(1) Sustained Release – Franz Diffusion Cell Study; Healthy and Beauty Solutions, Inc

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