Retinoids are a fickle bunch. A product that feels great on one person’s skin can be entirely too strong for another’s, which can make it difficult to find a product that works well on your complexion—especially if you’re looking for one that won’t break the bank. That’s what makes the retinol cream from Simplified Skin so special: It’s only $15, and has earned over five thousand five-star reviews on Amazon. The reason it’s so universally beloved? It’s ultra-effective and full of moisturizing ingredients that minimize irritation.
“Containing 2.5 percent retinol, this cream helps to boost collagen production and reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, helping to improve overall skin texture and tone,” says Marisa Garshick, MD, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City. “By also incorporating ingredients such as vitamin E, hyaluronic acid, shea butter, and jojoba oil, it works to nourish and hydrate the skin.”
The best part of the Simplified Skin Retinol Moisturizing Cream ($15) is that it balances retinol—which tends to be harsh, and can be too aggressive for certain skin types—with gentle ingredients. “Combining hydrating and skin-soothing ingredients helps the tolerability of retinoid products,” says Ivy Lee, MD, a board-certified dermatologist in Pasadena, California. “All retinoid products carry a risk of irritation, and moisturizing ingredients decrease the likelihood of irritation that causes redness, dryness, and flakiness of the skin.”
Plus, it doesn’t have the one ingredient that can make any formula more irritating—fragrance. “This cream can be considered for all skin types as it is fragrance-free making it an option even for those with more sensitive skin,” says Dr. Garshick. Although not everyone is sensitive to fragrance, it is a major cause of skin irritation for many. So keeping it out of a formula that can already cause irritation is wonderful.
Finally, the price point can’t be beat. Your retinol does not need to be pricey to be good. Whether you’re looking to try out retinol for the first time or are looking to change up your routine, the Simplified Skin Retinol Moisturizing Cream is a fantastic option.
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