Retinol is a star ingredient for those with acne. The ingredient works by interacting with the skin’s receptors, where it beneficially alters the genes involved with inflammation and cell growth. This reduces the formation of microcomedones, (a fancy word for skin pores clogged with sebum, bacteria, and dead skin cells). In addition, this uses niacinamide at 5%, which has some evidence to suggest it can help reduce breakouts and balance sebum, along with strengthening the barrier. Finally, the formula is further buffered with adaptogens and ceramides for their hydration and soothing properties. 

What users say:

Not only can retinol help reduce breakouts, but it may help ease the appearance of scarring thanks to its ability to encourage skin cell turnover. As one user notes, “My holy grail! Before this product my skin was pretty damaged from the past, with scarring and redness. After using this product for 3 months my acne, scaring, and redness have drastically decreased. I also never got purging in the beginning, which is a freaking miracle because my skin is very sensitive and reactive.” However, acne scarring is a very complicated thing to treat depending on the severity, so it may not work for all folks. 

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