How to Incorporate a Retinoid into Your Skincare Regimen

How to Incorporate a Retinoid into Your Skincare Regimen

Ahhh. glassy, youthful skin. There seems to be nothing like it. The feeling, the look – and the confidence that comes with it. As women, we’re constantly searching for products that will revive our skin to where it once was. And often, that search leads us to retinoids

Widely hailed as a holy grail and one of the best products for anti-aging and achieving healthy skin, retinoids have a lot to offer including less breakouts, more even texture and tone, and improvement in fine lines. It’s one of our must-have skincare products at Self Skin Studio.

So what are retinoids and how should you use them? Read on to find out more about one of our favorite skincare products for giving us that youthful glow! 

What are retinoids?

Retinoids, at their core, are derivatives of vitamin A [1]. They span a spectrum—from the over-the-counter retinol to the robust, prescription-strength retinoic acid. They play a crucial role in cell turnover, which is the process of shedding old, damaged skin cells and the generation of new skin cells. This results in smoother, more even-toned skin.

All these reasons make retinoids a powerhouse product for many different skin concerns. In essence, they're the multifaceted, hard-working gems of the skincare world.

What are the benefits of retinoids?

Research and testimonials alike champion the many benefits of retinoids [2]:

  • Smooth fine lines: Retinoids encourage the production of collagen, a protein that provides structure and firmness to the skin. And increased collagen production means decreased fine lines and wrinkles. 

  • Unclog pores and address acne: Retinoids help prevent pores from becoming clogged, improving acne and giving breakouts the boot.

  • Even tone and texture: By promoting cell turnover and increased collagen production, retinoids help give a smooth, even complexion for a more youthful and radiant you. 

Obagi Retivance

Retinoids can be a strong, powerful product, so it’s important to be selective – especially if you have sensitive skin. If you're mulling over a retinoid that most skin types can tolerate, we want to introduce one of our favorite products at Self Skin Studio, Obagi Retivance [3]. What makes it special? It’s formulated with Retinaldehyde, offering efficacy paired with gentleness—ideal for even sensitive regions like your neck and chest.

How to Incorporate a Retinoid into your skincare regimen:

  • Ease into it: Retinoid is a powerful, intense product that can cause some irritation. It’s important to give your skin time to adapt. We recommend pacing your applications to 2-3 times per week. 

  • Create a nightly ritual: Incorporate a retinoid during your PM skincare ritual. 
  • Pre-application routine: After a gentle cleanse and your regular serums, ensure that your skin has dried completely. Then, apply your retinoid. It’s important to let your skin get acclimated to retinoids before introducing any other active ingredients to the skin [4]. 
  • Less is more: We’ll say it again in case you missed it: retinoids are powerful. A pea-sized amount is enough! If you have sensitive skin, blending your retinoid product with your moisturizer can be extremely helpful! Or, follow up with a hydrating product. Our favorites are Brighten and Quench

  • Apply an SPF: Retinoids can make the skin more sensitive to the sun’s UV rays, so a daily SPF is non-negotiable. And when we say daily, we mean it. Even when the sun’s not out, sunscreen is a must!

  • Consistency is key: As amazing as retinoids are, it is not a magic product. To truly see the benefits, you have to stick with it. Regular, consistent use is key to reaping all of its amazing benefits [5].  

  • Stay the course: You may experience redness, dryness, or slight flaking when you first start using a retinoid product. This is common and is a normal response. It takes time to get your skin used to the ingredients. Stay the course (and see the previous bullet point). ;)


And there you have it—a comprehensive look at retinoids. When in doubt, schedule an appointment with your Self Skin Studio esthetician here .

Final Thoughts about Retinoids

Retinoids are phenomenal products, working hard to get us that gorgeous glow we’re all chasing. From smoothing out pesky fine lines to banishing breakouts, retinoids are a powerhouse we can’t recommend enough.

Are you ready to incorporate a retinoid into your nightly skincare ritual?  Click here to order the retinoid we swear by. If you’re not sure which is right for you, schedule an appointment with your Self Skin Studio esthetician. We’re here to help your skin look as brilliant as you feel! 


[1]: [Harvard Health Publishing] (

[2]: [WebMD] (

[3]: [Obagi Medical](

[4]: [Dermatology Times] (

[5]: [American Academy of Dermatology] (