My Favorite Affordable Retinol.
Created in partnership with Olay.
We talked a LOT about retinol in these parts. A lot. In my opinion it’s the best thing you can do for your skin in terms of anti-aging. I actually didn’t add retinol to my routine until a little over a year ago, but once I did. Frankly, it sounded so clinical and a little bit intimidating.
Retinol is the number one most searched ingredient on google, and since 2016 more than 5,000 new retinol products have launched. (I’m not surprised by that – as a blogger, I see a LOT!) Today’s post is about Olay’s new Retinol24 collection. If you are an avid blog reader you have probably seen this line everywhere… I know I have! I have spent the past month testing these products and am going to report back on the line as a whole, as well as each of the individual products themselves!
Olay Retinol24 Review
Before we dive in to my experience and product specifics – I was REALLY excited when Olay approached me about this opportunity. As you likely know from reading here I am into high-tech skincare. And I fully realize that some of the products I recommend are very pricy. I have been really wanting to find a more accessible retinol that I could share with you guys and have on hand to recommend when I’m asked. Olay is one of those companies that puts so much research into everything they do. (I worked at P&G and was always blown away by the teams of scientists and researchers dedicated to every single product launch – it’s amazing!) Olay created this particular line because of an interesting statistic: more than half of women who try retinol quit within a month. Crazy, right? The reasons these women listed: too expensive, they experienced irritation, and/or they didn’t see results.
So Olay created the Retinol 24 collection. The promise? Visible improvements in fine lines & wrinkles, smoothness, brightness, firming, dark spots, and pores. The formula contains a combination of B3 + Olay’s most transformative Retinoid Complex, which includes two types of retinol. It provides 24 hour hydration, and it’s affordably priced. Lastly, it’s not irritating. In a study conducted by the brand 96% of users experienced zero irritation.
I’m going to share my experience below!
My experience using the Olay Retinol24 Collection
A few notes about me before we dive in, as context is important. I am 38 years old. My skin is pretty dry and my biggest concerns right now are dehydration + fine lines around my eyes. And of course, preventing aging as best I can. I have never tried Botox or done fillers; but I was already using retinol 1-2x a week. I have found with other retinol products that I do experience irritation, so 1-2x a week has always been enough for me! I began testing these products on October 6th and finished writing my review on November 8th.
The collection as a whole.
First of all, I love that these products are fragrance free. A lot of drugstore skincare (and department store too!) products are fragranced and this drives me bonkers… whyyy!? I can do subtle fragrance but much prefer fragrance-free. These have absolutely zero fragrance which I love. And they’re incredibly hydrating. The testing window is right around the change of seasons – my skin gets even dryer than usual this time of year. Add to the fact that I was also traveling a lot which can also be extremely drying and dehydrating – these products came with me to all of our live shows.
I also like that the serum, moisturizer, and eye cream can all work together. It takes the guesswork out of the equation. Not everyone is a beauty blogger with access to all of the things and the ability to quickly discern what works well together. These products work beautifully together!
Retinol Benefits: Short Term
Upon using the collection at night the first time I noticed that my skin definitely looked much brighter and it was VERY hydrated. As I mentioned above, my skin does get very, very dry this time of year. It was soft and hydrated the next day and also very bright – I had a little glow going! And it’s not irritating. I am a big believer in listening to your skin and giving it what it needs and there were a few nights where my skin did feel a little bit tight so I took a night off but I was able to use these products 5 nights a week without irritation which is a first (as I mentioned above, with other retinol products I could only use them 1-2x a week.)
Retinol Benefits: Long Term
It’s with longer term use that you really see a difference; especially when it comes to your skin’s texture. I don’t have very many fine lines but I have a few on my forehead and around my eyes and I definitely noticed a reduction in the appearance. Retinol is not Botox; you won’t see this immediate elimination in fine lines but you will see a softening. Besides the blur in fine lines, my skin was noticeably smoother overall, and I also noticed that my skin tone was more even.
Retinol Serum vs. Moisturizer.
A few of you asked me if I had to choose between the retinol serum and the retinol moisturizer, which one it would be. This is tricky. These are the best retinol serum and best retinol cream I’ve tried at this price. I ended up asking the brand for an extra week of time to test the serum separately from the moisturizer so that I could properly answer this question. If I had to choose between them, I’d probably pick the serum. BUT if hydration is your biggest focus, get the cream!
That Retinol Eye Cream!!!!
I have to gush about the eye cream. I love all of the products but if I had to pick one, this would be it. It’s really hard to find a good retinol eye cream – I want those benefits for my eye area (as I noted above, my area is probably the biggest area of concern) but my eyes are pretty sensitive – a lot of other anti-aging eye creams I’ve tried have made my eyes watery and red. Not the case with this one – it is FANTASTIC. I am so, so impressed by it. I use it every night. I noticed a definite immediate difference in my under eye area (brighter, smoother, more hydrated) upon using it and with time, the area has gotten a lot smoother.
Created in partnership with Olay // Photography by Carter Fish.