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Retinol Serum: Good for Everyone, But…

To avoid any ‘buts,’ let’s figure out the most effective combinations and schemes!


  1. Retinol comes in different forms and concentrations. Our choice is the Granactive retinoid 2% complex based on the HPR retinoid of the latest generation as part of the HPR-SERUM serum from the reNeo cosmetics.
  2. Always remember about the skin’s adaptation to the application of retinol serum – the skin must get used to it (detailed application scheme >>)

How to effectively introduce a retinol serum into a procedure or home care? What can it be combined with?

Retinol + moisturizing ✅

The process of accelerated cell renewal is accompanied by the loss of moisture, so it is very important to restore the skin’s natural moisturizing factor when using retinol.
In the procedure: use a moisturizing serum and an alginate mask according to the protocol, and already after the exposure, apply HPR-SERUM and lipid protection, it will be physiological for the skin, since it is the lipid protective layer that prevents the evaporation of water from the surface of the skin and prevents moisture loss.
In home care, we apply the moisturizing serum in the morning and at night on days when we do not use retinol. Do not forget to cover it with cream.

Retinol + vitamin C ✅

The process of cell renewal is accompanied by the release of free radicals, and vitamin C is one of the most powerful antioxidants, it also participates in the synthesis of collagen.
In the procedure: vitamin C serum is applied under an active mask, and after exposure we apply HPR-SERUM and lipid protection cream.
In home care, we apply vitamin C serum in the morning and at night on days when we do not use retinol. Do not forget to cover it with cream.

Retinol + SPF cream ✅

Under the influence of retinol, UV ray sensitivity increases. Daily sun protection will reduce the risk of hyperpigmentation.
In the procedure after applying HPR-SERUM, you should always use sunscreen, unless the procedure is performed in the evening.
In home care, serum is used as indicated + sunscreen in the morning, and HPR-SERUM + cream in the evening.

Retinol + manual face cleansing ✅

The procedure increases the bioavailability of retinol, and retinol, in turn, reduces sebum production and helps narrow pores.
In the procedure, it is a great opportunity to “acquaint” the skin with retinol, apply immediately after the mask for narrowing pores, before the final cream.
In home care, after facial cleansing (if HPR-SERUM has already been applied during the procedure), it is recommended to skip the application for 1-2 days in order to avoid increasing the skin sensitivity, and to allow it to recover calmly.

In which cases is it better to postpone the use of HPR-SERUM?

Retinol + peels ❌

High concentrations of acids cause non-specific inflammation in tissues, destroy connections between keratinocytes, increasing skin sensitivity. On the day of the peel and for another 1-2 days before and after the procedure, it is recommended to exclude retinol in home care.
But in further post-peel home care, the combination of retinol and acids in small concentrations is only welcome!
Low concentrations of acids and enzymes will facilitate the process of cell exfoliation, and in combination with amino acids and antioxidants help the skin to regenerate. It is recommended to use serum with AHA&BHA (up to 15%) in the evening alternating with HPR-SERUM (gradual application according to the scheme) or to “cover” HPR-SERUM with an acid cream.

Retinol + pregnancy, lactation ❌

Retinol has high bioavailability, and therefore, in small concentrations, it enters the bloodstream, which can negatively affect the fetus or a breastfeeding child.

Retinol + aggressive procedures ❌

Application of HPR-SERUM should be excluded 2 weeks before and after the use of laser devices and other methods that damage the integrity of the skin (microdermabrasion, microneedle RF, microneedling). It is necessary to allow the skin to recover after each procedure.

Retinol + oral retinoids ❌

Excessive concentration of retinol in tissues can lead to retinoid dermatitis, increasing the sensitivity of the skin, causing persistent hyperemia, burning and intense peeling.
If the regimen of taking retinoids per os starts with low doses of 10-20 mg, then the first month of the combination of topical and systemic retinol will not cause side effects, since the concentration of the substance in the tissues is low, later topical application should be excluded.
After a course of systemic retinoids, for prevention, retinol should be added to home care for maintenance therapy.

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