Retinol is an ingredient used in cosmetic products for reducing the appearance of the signs of aging and photo-damage. Indeed, decades of clinical research show that Retinol speeds cell turnover to smooth wrinkles, fade sunspots, and build collagen. In a double blind study it was observed that Retinol formulation resulted in significant improvement in fine wrinkles after 12 weeks of treatment.
The study was of the effect of a topical application of 1% retinol in 53 individuals (50 years or above) with aged skin. The authors of this trial observed that Retinol application for 7 days reduced MMP (matrix metalloproteinase), collagenase, and gelatinase expression with concomitant increase in fibroblast growth and collagen synthesis in the studied tissue specimens. Thus, it can be concluded that Retinol should be effective in the treatment of aging and photo-aging. Clinical results also showed significant improvement of various signs of facial skin aging such as wrinkles, hyperpigmentary spots, tone unevenness, dullness and the overall photo-damage score.
Improvements were still visible 4 weeks after the cessation of the test product application. This study demonstrates that significant lasting improvement of facial skin aging can be obtained with well tolerated low concentration of Retinol when adequately formulated with other anti-aging ingredients.