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This is my first time trying and testing a squalane-based product. I have used retinol-based products but didn’t really indulge in them. “The Ordinary” brand has given me the opportunity to dabble with some natural acids and chemicals that I would not dare think of using otherwise. I am still dabbling with using extreme chemicals on my face such as acids and peptides, but so far, I am enjoying their results, so I think I will continue experimenting with them while being cautious. When these chemicals are used in the right concentration and in combination with right co-ingredients, they prove beneficial for skin. In this post, I am reviewing The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid 2% in Squalane.
This water-free solution contains a 2% concentration of an advanced retinoid active complex called Granactive Retinoid that has been shown to offer better results against multiple signs of aging than retinol without any of the irritation and drawbacks common with retinol. Granactive Retinoid, an active technology from Grant Industries, is a solubilized system of Hydroxypinacolone Retinoate, a highly-advanced form of retinoid which is, in fact, a non-prescription ester of all-trans direct retinoic acid that offers a multi-fold better effect against signs of aging than retinol, retinyl palmitate and nearly all other forms of non-prescription retinoid. Apply a small amount to face in the PM as part of your skincare regimen, after water serums but before heavier treatments. Do not use with other retinoid treatments. Avoid unprotected solar exposure. Store in a cool, dry place.
My Experience with The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid 2% in Squalane:
This product contains squalane as its first ingredient and this makes up for most of the product. Squalane is derived from squalene which is part of our skin’s own natural moisture but it is extremely unstable. When squalene is hydrogenated, it converts to skin-friendlier and safer squalane. The amount of squalene produced and retained in the skin decreases over time. It peaks in our teens and then starts to decline in our 20’s, leaving skin rough, dry and vulnerable. Hence, to combat visible signs of ageing, a supplemental source of squalene can be beneficial.
This product contains 2% concentration of an “advanced retinoid active complex” called Granactive retinoid that has, as per the website description, shown better results against multiple signs of ageing. It has performed better than retinol and does not cause irritation which is a common drawback of retinol. Granactive Retinoid has proven to be better all other forms of non-prescription retinoid. The packaging of this product is pretty and practical. It comes a 30ml, glass bottle (dark color glass bottle) which is practical and serves the purpose well. The cap has a dropper which dispenses the appropriate amount of product for one-time use. The oil is yellow in color but is invisible on skin.
I use this product after my water-based skin care products (toners and water-based serums). I use it as a face oil and the days I use this way, I do not layer a lot of skin care products because retinoid is a strong chemical and does not blend well with most skin care products. I do not have age spots or blemishes, so I cannot comment about the potency of this serum in this regard, but because of its high moisture content, it started to give a hydrated appearance to face (I used it for over a month). It did effectively reduce fine lines and large pores and gave a youthful, glowing appearance to skin. This formula is not an over-night formula and needs patience and diligence and will take its own time to show its effect. I do not think it can fight age spots but can fights sign of ageing (due to skin losing its moisture).
I use it after cleanser, toner and essence. The product has no fragrance, it is lightweight and easy to spread on face. Just a couple of drops are enough to cover and face. It does not interfere with the following skin care steps. The Ordinary recommends that up to three different skincare products by the brand can be layered. I recommend this product to all those who are looking for potent and affordable anti-ageing skincare serum.
Pros of The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid 2% in Squalane:
- An affordable face oil compared to other more expensive options.
- Comes in a 30ml glass bottle with a dropper. The packaging is practical and serves its purpose well.
- The product has no fragrance, it is lightweight, and is easy to spread. A small amount goes a long way.
- Gets absorbed quickly into the skin, preps skin for further layering of skincare products.
- After weeks of use, it gave a more hydrated appearance to face and reduced signs of ageing that appear due to skin losing its moisture.
- Different versions of this product are available with varying percentage of retinoid.
Cons of The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid 2% in Squalane:
- The ingredient list is rife with complex compounds, so a patch test is essential.
- It might not work on age spots.
Would I Recommend The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid 2% in Squalane?
It is an affordable face oil and perfect for first-time users. It has some potent compounds which will work well at combating early signs of ageing. It does not cause irritation and is suitable for sensitive skin as well.
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