The “What”, “When” and “How” of Retinoids.

Ahh, the ingredient that stole my heart, and can confidently say is the Holy Grail of all skincare ingredients. There seems to be much discussion of retinoids over the last few years, but is that enough for you to fully understand it? Don’t worry, that’s why I’m here!


“What is Retinol?”

Retinol is derived from Vitamin A – an essential vitamin that plays a role in immune function, cellular growth, and more. This ingredient is a powerhouse and my personal favorite because it doesn’t just target one skincare concern, it targets an array of them. From wrinkles to pigmentation to acne, it addresses various issues. It also has a direct impact on the formation of collagen, resulting in healthy, firm, and youthful-looking skin.

When you hear people talking about retinol, you’ve probably also heard about Retin-A, Adapalene, Tretinoin, etc., but in reality, they are all a subcategory of Retinoids. Retinoids is the collective name, and the latter are all types of Retinoids. Great! Now that you know how to classify them, let’s take a closer look at each and their differences, in order of lowest concentration to highest.

  1. Retinol Palmitate: think ‘calm‘ and ‘palm.‘ This over-the-counter (OTC) retinoid is the least potent/calmest. This would be great for someone who has sensitive skin or doesn’t have many lines/wrinkles but wants to prevent aging in the future.
  2. Retinol: this is your standard type of Retinol, commonly found in skincare products, in concentrations of 0.1% to 1%. All skin types can use Retinol and it is still safe enough to use on sensitive skin types, but at the lowest concentration.
  3. Retinaldehyde: this is an OTC retinoid that is slightly stronger than Retinol. It is still safe enough to use on all skin types.
  4. Adapalene: this can be bought OTC or via prescription. Adapalene is stronger than retinol, but again, well tolerated by most skin types. This is commonly prescribed for the treatment of acne.
  5. Tretinoin: this is available via prescription only. This is suitable for someone who has tried Retinol but wants to move up to something stronger. It’s advisable to begin Tretinoin at a low dose initially.
  6. Tazarotene: this is the most powerful, prescription-strength retinoid. his retinoid delivers faster results, but it also carries a higher risk of irritation compared to other retinoids.


“When can I start using retinoids?”

If used in the right concentration and alongside the right concerns, retinoids are a great addition to skincare routines for individuals in their 20s all the way to their 60s. However, since it has numerous strengths, it’s advisable to consult a professional before using it. That can be anyone from a skincare therapist, a pharmacist, or your doctor.


“How can I start using retinoids in my skincare routine?”

Now that you know there are many different types of retinoids on the market, when to apply them in your routine will depend on the strength and type of Retinoid that you are using. As a general rule, you’ll want to use it after cleansing and before moisturizing. After moisturizing, SPF is absolutely crucial. The Retinol that I swear by and use in my own routine is by The Purest Solutions and is in a 1% formulation. in a new tab)


Retinol is easily the most important ingredient in my skincare routine. It has kept my acne at bay and largely reduced the pigmentation on my skin.
Don’t let the variety of options scare you away – remember, the more, the merrier! Reach out to a professional in the industry to assist you, or alternatively, engage in a chat with one of the trainers here at Beautique Academy. We’d be delighted to discuss it with you!

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Salon Sanitization: Protecting yourself & your clients.

Studies have shown that high-touch surfaces in public settings, including those found in beauty salons, can harbor significant amounts of bacteria and viruses. For example, one study found that common salon tools such as nail files, foot files, and buffers can harbor bacteria such as Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa if not properly sanitized between uses.

Similarly, viruses such as the influenza virus and rhinovirus can survive on surfaces for varying lengths of time, depending on factors such as humidity and temperature. This means that surfaces in beauty salons can potentially harbor viruses if not adequately cleaned and disinfected.

This is the scary reality of working in a space that has many people coming in and out. We never know what sort of hygiene practices someone has so it becomes empirical to have proper sanitization practices to run and maintain a beauty salon.

Here is a list of Sanitization practices you should have in your beauty business.

  1. Clean and Disinfect Surfaces: Regularly clean and disinfect all surfaces that come into contact with clients and staff, including countertops, chairs, tables, and door handles.
  2. Sanitize Tools and Equipment: Disinfect all tools and equipment used between clients, including scissors, combs, brushes, nail clippers, and tweezers. Use EPA-approved disinfectants or implement an autoclave or UV sterilizer for certain tools.
  3. Wash Hands Frequently: Encourage staff to wash their hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially before and after each client interaction, after handling money, and after using the restroom.
  4. Provide Hand Sanitizer: Make hand sanitizer readily available for both clients and staff to use throughout the salon.
  5. Use Disposable Items When Possible: Whenever feasible, use disposable items such as disposable gloves, towels, and capes to minimize the risk of cross-contamination.
  6. Clean Towels and Linens: Launder towels, capes, and linens using hot water and detergent after each use. Store clean linens in a clean, dry area away from potential contamination.
  7. Maintain Clean Floors: Regularly sweep and mop floors to remove hair, dust, and debris. Pay special attention to areas where hair clippings tend to accumulate.
  8. Sterilize Multi-Use Tools: For tools that cannot be disposed of or adequately disinfected with chemical solutions, such as metal implements, use methods like autoclaving or UV sterilization to ensure they are free from pathogens.
  9. Regularly Clean and Disinfect Foot Spas: If your salon offers pedicure services, ensure that foot spas are cleaned and disinfected between each use according to manufacturer guidelines.
  10. Educate Staff on Sanitization Protocols: Provide training to staff on proper sanitization procedures and ensure they understand the importance of maintaining a clean and hygienic environment.

By implementing these sanitization practices consistently, beauty salons can help protect the health and safety of both clients and staff while maintaining a professional and reputable establishment.

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