What you need to know this instant.

STARTING TODAY: I'M WEARING RETINOL EVERYDAY FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE

I had always heard so much about retinol and all the amazing things it

does for your skin. Jean, Cristina, and Cat swear by it, but somehow it hadn’t really hit home, until today. I attended a Neutrogena roundtable on retinol.

Starting the day you’re born, you begin accumulating sun damage. So to answer the question: When should I start using products that contain retinol to combat signs of aging? NOW. Retinol reverses signs of sun damage. The scientist we met with was self-proclaimed ‘very very freckled.’ She started using retinol on her hands about a year ago, and had visibly way fewer freckles on her hands than her arms. It was kind of incredible.

If you’re just starting to use retinol, your skin may get irritated or flaky or feel tingly. Try using it every other day until your skin acclimates.

Wear it at night—retinol is photosensitive.

Of course there are prescription options available, but I am starting with the super-effective retinol you can buy right in the drugstore, like this serum from the Neutrogena Ageless Intensives line.

—Simone Kitchens, beauty assistant

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