You’ve probably heard of retinol — a potent form of vitamin A — and you’ve probably heard of the warnings associated with this holy grail ingredient. While traditional retinols are prized for their anti-aging benefits, they also come with irritating side effects, like inflammation and dryness.
This led us to search for a plant-based retinol alternative, a Phyto-Retinol, that provides the same benefits while being gentle to your skin. Our vegan ingredient is the star behind the AGELESS Phyto-Retinol Collection, which is clinically shown to dramatically reduce visible fine lines, wrinkles and uneven skin tone in just one week.
To better understand the benefits of Phyto-Retinol and our new AGELESS collection, we spoke with bareMinerals Dermatology Ambassador Dr. Joyce Park. The California-based board-certified dermatologist answered everything you wanted to know, and gave us tips on how to incorporate these products into a skincare routine — no matter your age.
Q: What are the skin benefits and potential drawbacks of traditional retinol and how do those compare to Phyto-Retinol?
A: Retinol is known for its ability to address signs of aging including fine lines and dark spots, and it can also help to improve the radiance and texture of your skin. But for some, it can cause harsh side effects. Traditional retinol can potentially cause irritation in the form of dryness, redness, and flaking skin, especially in those with sensitive skin. Also, one should avoid retinol products if pregnant or breastfeeding — make sure you are consulting with your doctor or dermatologist accordingly.
Phyto-Retinol delivers similar benefits with less potential of irritation — it’s a plant-based alternative that is much kinder to skin. The Phyto-Retinol in the AGELESS Collection is sustainably sourced from the Picão Preto plant. This gentler alternative does not cause redness, dryness or sensitivity, as seen in clinical studies. You can use Phyto-Retinol safely in areas more prone to retinol irritation, such as around the eyes, the mouth, and on the neck.
Additionally, the AGELESS Phyto-Retinol Collection can be a great option for people who are trying to conceive, or are pregnant or nursing, since those are often no-no’s for retinol and retinoid. As always, make sure you are consulting with your doctor or dermatologist before using any new products.
Q: Is Phyto-Retinol good for addressing prevention or existing signs of aging, or both?
A: Phyto-Retinol can help with both aging and existing signs of aging, such as wrinkles and dullness of the skin.
It’s great to start early. For young people, adding Phyto-Retinol to your skincare routine will help you reduce appearance of fine lines, improve your skin’s texture and boost radiance.
For more mature skin, adding Phyto-Retinol to a skincare routine will help reduce the appearance of new and existing fine lines, and improve dullness and the overall texture of the skin in one week.
Q: How should one use Phyto-Retinol and what should you avoid?
A: Phyto-Retinol can be safely used every morning and night, at each step of your skincare routine. I would avoid using it in conjunction with harsh physical exfoliants that can damage the skin barrier.
Q: Do you need to use extra SPF with Phyto-Retinol?
A: Because Phyto-Retinol does not make your skin more sensitive to the sun, you do not need to use extra SPF. However, you should ALWAYS use SPF 30+ daily, rain or shine, to protect your skin from aging!
Q: Are there any skin types Phyto-Retinol is best for?
A: What I love about this line is that Phyto-Retinol is suitable for any skin type. It does not matter if you have young skin, mature skin, light skin, tan skin, you can still enjoy the benefits. Phyto-Retinol is a great alternative for those with sensitive skin. It’s especially good for those special areas with thin, more sensitive skin such as around the eyes, neck and around the mouth — these are areas where we traditionally see retinol or retinoid irritation.
Q: For people who have struggled to get results with retinol because of excessive irritation, is it safe for them to use Phyto-Retinol?
A: Yes! Phyto-Retinol was tested in clinical studies and among the many great benefits, the Picão Preto ingredient was tested to be similarly effective to retinol without causing redness, dryness or sensitivity. Plus, you get the benefit of Hyaluronic Acid in all four of the products, which provides instant and long-lasting hydration.
Q: How can people incorporate the AGELESS Phyto-Retinol Collection into their existing skincare routine?
A: The AGELESS Phyto-Retinol Collection plays well with other skincare ingredients, so you can easily incorporate any of the products into your skincare routine. One product that is very easy to add into an existing routine is the AGELESS 10% Phyto-Retinol Night Concentrate, which is lightweight and fast absorbing, easy to layer underneath moisturizer, eye cream, or neck cream.
I also like to mix the AGELESS 10% Phyto-Retinol Night Concentrate with the SKINLONGEVITY Long Life Herb Serum for added benefits.
Also, Phyto-Retinol is a great alternative for those switching their skincare regimen for wintertime. Winter is when I start to see some retinoid/retinol dermatitis, manifesting as red flaky sensitive patches on the face. I often advise patients to dial back their retinol/retinoid or usage during this time.
Q: What is the importance of the Peptides and Hyaluronic Acid, and how do they work together to achieve results?
A: Peptides are short chains of amino acids that help to support natural collagen so that skin appears plumper and smoother. Hyaluronic Acid, on the other hand, works as a moisture magnet, helping your skin hold on to and retain water. Both of these work to help your skin appear plumper and more hydrated!
Q: What is your favorite thing about the AGELESS Phyto-Retinol Collection?
A: I like that the AGELESS Phyto-Retinol Collection is suitable for any skin type, any age, and any skin tone, making it a truly versatile product.