The Best Retinol Skin Creams

by Joshua Duvauchelle ; Updated July 18, 2017

Retinol is a natural variation of vitamin A, reports the University of Maryland Medical Center. The center says that when retinol is used as an active ingredient in a skin cream, it can target signs of aging in a way that's just as effective, yet more gentle, than prescription-strength wrinkle products. Smooth on a retinol-enhanced treatment and you may experience smoother, less wrinkled skin and a more even skin tone.

Jan Marini Skin Research Factor-A Lotion

Jan Marini Skin Research's lotion is a "worthwhile moisturizer," according to skincare expert Paula Begoun. She says it's best for dry to normal skin and liked its inclusion of both retinol and retinyl palmitate, as well as antioxidants like niacinamide and vitamin C. After testing the cream, she ranked its efficacy as "very good."

RoC Multi-Correxion 4-Zone Daily Moisturizer SPF 30

RoC's cream is one of the best creams containing retinol, according to the beauty editors of "Women's Health" magazine. The retinol can help fade both wrinkles and skin discolorations. Dr. Francessa Fusco, a dermatologist reviewing the cream for the magazine, said it can be more effective than a hydroquinone cream. Besides retinol, RoC also adds antioxidants, a broad-spectrum sunscreen ingredient and cosmetic pigments that instantly lend a glow to your complexion.

Dr. Denese New York SPF 25 Hand Defense Cream

Dr. Denese New York's inclusion of avobenzone, a sunscreen ingredient, in a moisturizing skin cream is "very good," says Begoun. She says it's good for dry hands and notes that it includes retinol, thus helping to defend against wrinkles while combating existing wrinkles. If you have sensitive skin, Begoun notes that the inclusion of herbal oil may irritate your skin.

Korres Natural Sugar Crystal Cream Multivitamin Skin Shield

The skin cream from Korres Natural swirls moisturizing plant oils and antioxidants in a lightweight lotion that Begoun said is "very good." She loved its use of both retinol and glycolic acid. The latter enhances skin cell turnover for a smoother skin surface. Its sheer texture is best for slightly oily to normal skin, and Begoun says Korres Natural choose excellent packaging for the cream that helps ensure the retinol's stability and long-term potency.


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About the Author

Joshua Duvauchelle is a certified personal trainer and health journalist, relationships expert and gardening specialist. His articles and advice have appeared in dozens of magazines, including exercise workouts in Shape, relationship guides for Alive and lifestyle tips for Lifehacker. In his spare time, he enjoys yoga and urban patio gardening.