Let’s talk about retinization


bout 2 months ago I started using retinol. What I didn’t know is that there is a very ugly side to retinol, this ugly wench is called retinization. Like most of us I got a lower % retinol, because for me it wasn’t about reversing anything, more than a prevention is better than cure approach.

Also please note I am not a doctor or qualified professional so please do your own research, and consult a doctor or dermatologist if need be.

I wish I did research, more than just review videos about retinol. So I am here to try an help you avoid looking like a crocodile. That is not even an exaggeration, it’s hideous. Let’s just get into it shall we.

Sadly I don’t have my pictures anymore, as you would know I’ve had quite a year with phones. I was pick pocketed and then I washed the 2nd one. And I am not so dedicated to this blog that I would intentionally destroy my skin, sorry guys I like you but not THAT much.

Retinol – The Initial Experience

The first week, my skin did so well. It was softer and plump, and generally starting to actually look better. The following Monday I woke up as usual, applied my makeup, looking ok. I could feel my skin was dry but I really didn’t think anything of it. By 11am, it looked like I could wipe my own skin off, that’s how bad the peeling was.

In order to remedy this without having makeup remover wipes in my bag, I simply took some hand lotion and rubbed it almost all the way in on my hands and patted my “moisturized” hands onto my skin. This helped but it looked horrible.

I continued like this for that week, it’s important to note that like a damn amateur, I was using the retinol daily, along side my niacinamide. This was mistake number one. Then I tried to wax and completely ripped the skin off my brows and upper lip. And to Mandy’s this is my public apology, I figure this is because of the retinization. I will re-purchase and re-try that facial wax again. I am sorry. Zee was unaware her skin was peeling off her face!


I finally did some research to find that it was retinization. On one hand I was so relieved that there was an explanation, on the other I felt like a total idiot for not doing this in the first place.

What is retinization?

“Retinization is a fancy way to call the inevitable adjustment period. Six weeks of red, flaky mess even the best makeup in the world can’t hide (it just makes it look worse!). *sighs*

It’s enough to make you want to throw in the towel and forget this retinoid business altogether. Big mistake. This mess is a sign your retinoid is working.” from Beautiful with Brains.

This is the website I got the info from. There’s a lot of information there, that you can check out if you like.

In this digital age you can find the info if you just look for it, or better, to know you have to look for it demit.

Anyway how long did it take for my skin to chill the f@$k out?


It took a week of heavy, heavy, hydrating and a ridiculous amount of sun screen. Now we all know to ALWAYS use sun screen and most especially, in conjunction with retinol. But I basically bathed myself in the stuff. But within about 7 days my face was back to normal.

So upon my researching I found that because I am already such a hydration slut, it actually wasn’t as bad as it could have been. *Pro Tip* hydrate heavily for at least a week before starting the regime.

Another *pro tip*, only apply retinol 2-3 times a week not every day like a baary!

Is retinization permanent?

No love it is not. But it sure is avoidable! Take it from a chop who is so eager to try things and not research, you can reverse the ugliness of this “condition”.

But like I said, hydration is key. The products that helped me the most was the Nikel Moisturizer, which I previously reviewed here. As well as a little Kuri Amé I had left over, which I forgot about :(. Avoid physical exfoliators during this period. Because retinol is helping with the cell turnover, you will cause more harm than good.


Let me know if you use retinol and what your experience was like? I mean I almost quit, till I took to the internet.


Hope this was helpful!

Have a be YOU tiful week gorgeous! And remember to moisturize when you introduce retinol!


1 Comment

  1. I am so scared to use it, I have pigmentation from hormonal fluctuations from PCOS, so I think it would help as well as with the signs of aging, but am so nervous to take the plunge.

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