Essentially, retinol (retinoid) is the Vitamin A molecule which is one of the best vitamins for your skin. Not only is it a powerful antioxidant but it also stimulates cell growth, helps to repair injured or damaged cells, and encourages new cell turnover. The molecule itself is small enough to penetrate to the lower layers of the skin where is can reach the elastin and collagen that support your skin structure. Some of the results can include reducing wrinkles and fine lines, fighting acne, unclogging pores, and repairing sun-damaged skin. In summation, it is the powerhouse producer of the skincare ingredients.
Masks such as Shiseido Benefiance Pure Retinol Intensive Revitalizing Face Mask or Verso Skincare Reviving Eye Mask might be great for a boost before an event or party, but personally, I think daily use provides much better long-term results. Depending on your skin type, there are serums such as Peter Thomas Roth Retinol Fusion PM, creams such as Kate Somerville RetAsphere™ 2-in-1 Retinol Night Cream, and even specialty treatments such as Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Ferulic+Retinol Triple Correction Eye Serum.
How to Incorporate
It is generally recommended to use products containing retinol as part of your nighttime regimen. While the masks are a nice treat occasionally, I actually prefer the daily use for maximum and thorough results. If you are using a retinol serum or cream, try to avoid using other exfoliators at the same time, such as alpha hydroxy acids. Multiple treatment ingredients can dry out your skin and you could lose the benefits and the results. Above all else, make sure to apply your sunscreen daily so that you can maintain that beautiful new complexion!