Retinol or Collagen- Which is better for mature skin?

<b>Retinol or Collagen</b>- Which is better for mature skin?

Think of any skin concern – wrinkles, fine lines, pigmentation, uneven tone… Chances are, there’s a collagen or retinol skincare product for it.

But what's really behind their magic? Retinol and collagen are well known for their anti-ageing, skin renewing benefits. While both are also hailed for their ability to help boost collagen production, they're not in competition with one another. You can use them hand in hand to rejuvenate your skin. In this blog, we’ll discover the benefits of collagen and retinol, and how they boost your skin's youthful glow – both individually and as a dynamic skincare duo.

Read on to discover your skin's perfect match.


What is Collagen?

super facialist vegan collagen night cream in hand against blue background

Collagen is like the scaffolding that keeps our skin looking smooth and plump.

It's naturally present in our skin's deeper dermis layer and in other tissues like tendons and ligaments. However, as we age, we begin to lose collagen gradually (approximately 1% every year after the age of 25), leading to wrinkles, sagging and loss of plumpness.

If you’re looking to help fight signs of ageing and boost skin elasticity, promoting collagen production is key. As we get older and produce less collagen, there are several ways you can supplement collagen in your day-to-day life to help maintain a plump and youthful complexion. One of the best ways to do this is with collagen infused skincare products, which get to work on the outer layers on the skin and mimic the effects of natural collagen in your skin – resulting in a more plump, firm and youthful looking complexion.


What is Retinol?

super facialist retinol overnight resync night cream against purple background

Also known as Vitamin A, retinol belongs to the retinoid’s family. There are two main types of retinoids in skincare, retinol and retinal. Both have highly effective anti-ageing benefits, and the main difference lies in their interaction with the skin. Retinal is further along the vitamin A pathway (only one step away from becoming retinoic acid), meaning that it is more potent and is suitable for more experienced retinoid users. Whereas retinol is great for anyone looking for amazing anti-ageing benefits.


Retinol helps stimulate cell turnover and boosts collagen and elastin boosting properties, which helps reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, enlarged pores, and uneven tone. This process can also help prevent breakouts and improve your overall skin radiance.

But there's more to retinol: It doesn't just help encourage collagen production; it is also renowned for its ability to minimise the appearance of pigmentation, sun damage and dark spots. In summary, it leaves skin looking smoother, restored and renewed.  


When to start incorporating age-supporting skincare

Skincare is as much about prevention as it is about targeting current skin concerns (we hope everyone is wearing daily SPF). Though it's never too late to begin, skincare experts suggest starting age-friendly routines in your mid to late 20s. This proactive step sets the stage for long-term skin health and helps counteract the effects of both internal and external aging factors.


So, Retinol or Collagen for wrinkles and fine lines?

fine lines and wrinkles close up on skin

Even after all that information on Retinol and Collagen, you’re probably still wondering which one to choose.

The answer is it completely depends on your personal skin goals and current skin condition. You can use both of these ingredients in your AM/PM routine, or separately, but it’s important to note that retinol overall is a higher strength ingredient and needs to be used with a little more caution than collagen.

If you’re new to retinol, always build up frequency of use by using it once or twice per week to start (depending on its % strength) and increasing frequency gradually ask your skin becomes use to the active. Excessive retinol use can cause skin irritation and increase skin sensitivity due to it being an active ingredient, so be careful when mixing with other actives and ensure you wear SPF.

Here’s a summary of which ingredient to go for:


Collagen is best suited for you if:

  • You want to make your skin appear plumper
  • You have sensitive or easily irritated skin and need a gentler anti-aging product
  • Your skin tends to be dry
  • You don't have many wrinkles or visible signs of aging yet but want to start using a skin-supporting ingredient
  • You're seeking a milder option instead of retinol
Try the Vegan Collagen Firm + Lift range here


Retinol is best suited for you if:

  • You want to reduce the appearance of deeper fine lines and wrinkles
  • You have oily and blemish-prone skin. (Unless you have an active breakout, in which case avoid retinol as it may cause irritation on already broken and inflamed skin).
  • You have visible dark spots, sunspots, and post-breakout discoloration
  • You don’t have sensitive skin and are used to using actives in your skincare routine
Try our Retinol Anti-Ageing range here


Top tips for incorporating Retinol and Collagen into your routine

  • Since retinol is best used a couple of times per week, we recommend altering between retinol and collagen products. For example, use a Retinol Night Cream 2/3 times per week, and switch to a Collagen Night Cream on the other nights. (You can read more about altering between skincare actives to help protect your skin barrier in our Skin Cycling blog here).
  • For daytime skin defence, use collagen skincare for your AM routine to help provide hydration and firmness. For your nighttime skin rejuvenation, opt for this Retinol Overnight Resync Night Cream. It will help promote cell renewal and boost collagen production while you sleep for a smoother complexion when you wake up.
  • SPF is essential every day, all day. It's especially crucial when incorporating Retinol into your skincare routine, as it can heighten your skin's sensitivity.



Best Retinol products to try:

This brilliant Retinol Night Cream is best suited for skin with signs of ageing and uneven skin tone. It encourages cell renewal, helps boost firmness and smooth the appearance of wrinkles. Use as a last step in your evening routine. Massage it in upwards and outward motions across the face, neck and décolleté.– Charlotte Connoley, skincare expert.



Best Collagen Products to try:

"This targeted silky smooth serum is a brilliant way to plump my skin before applying day or night moisturiser, leaving my skin super smooth and soft. I love the texture of this serum as it's not sticky and instead sinks into the skin quickly. I love that the collagen contained in this serum is naturally derived and 100% vegan as well!" – Charlotte Connoley, skincare expert.



Ultimately, the key to effective skincare lies in understanding your skin's needs and incorporating the right ingredients into your routine. By addressing the concerns of aging skin holistically, you can embark on a journey towards timeless radiance and skin vitality.


Shop the full Vegan Collagen range here.

Shop the full Retinol range here.

Let’s get social. Share your skincare routines by tagging us on Instagram@super.facialist& TikTok@superfacialist #SuperFacialist