My skin really hates retinol. I want to use it so badly, but the redness and bumps that follow are just not worth it, even if there could potentially be a wrinkle-free light at the end of the irritating tunnel.
When Ole Henriksen announced it was coming out with a line of products named (cleverly) Retin-ALT, I was immediately intrigued. I’ve already loved its Truth Serum and Banana Bright Eye Crème, so I gave it a try.
Folks, it’s really, really great.
Utilizing something called bakuchiol—a natural alternative to retinol—the Glow Cycle™ Retin-ALT Power Serum works its magic in concert with an AHA (glycolic and lactic acids), Edelweiss stem cells, hibiscus flower extract, red algae and tara extracts, and other conditioning and softening ingredients like sandalwood and licorice root.
AHAs, aka alpha-hydroxy acids, help in retexturing skin and fading dark spots. Edelweiss is a flower that, yes, is sung about in The Sound of Music to represent Austrian loyalty, but is also known for its resilience in harsh climates. The stem cells help with skin’s firmness and can improve skin’s elasticity. Hibiscus flower extract is full of antioxidants and can help with skin tone and texture.
My two favorite parts about this serum are things that don’t really matter in the long run, but are truly the mark of a product I will continue to use: how it looks and how it smells. Glow Cycle has a faint, citrus-y smell that feels natural and organic even without the addition of fragrance, which it doesn’t have. The lilac color helps with brightening your face and gives you the look of someone who slept a full eight hours, even if the world around you is falling apart (trust me on this one).
The Glow Cycle line also has an overnight cream, but I have yet to use it, as I’m not the biggest fan of heavy creams at night. If you want the benefits of a retinol but your skin can’t handle it, Retin-ALT may be your answer.