As a beauty blogger, I've seen it and done it all when it comes to beauty products. So it's hard to impress me. Of course, it doesn't help that I do tend to take a skeptical approach to skincare, so I rarely ever pile on the compliments for any one product (if you don't believe me, you can check out this mascara review, this other mascara review, this face mask review, this slimming body cream (hah!) review, this moisturizer review, and this face wash review, among others). So sometimes blogging gets a little boring - there are only so many creative ways to say "this sucks" or "this is meh". But. For this product, I don't have to! This is one genuine rave for a product that has really worked for me. I'm talking about my beloved Natural Skin Shop Vitamin C Retinol + Anti-Oxidant Moisturizer.
Initially, I didn't like this as much - it's got oils (okay, jojoba, and apricot kernel were the two main ones - some might consider this a good thing), it felt oily on the face, smelt a little strange (it had that "retinol"-ish smell that was exactly the same as my prescription retinoid), and took awhile to sink in. But over time, I found it worked really well for me. I felt like my skin texture was finer, clearer, and brighter, and my overall skin condition had improved. In fact, I liked it so much, I actually used up the entire tub! And a week after being done with my first tube, I think my skin kind of misses it.
One of the key advertised ingredient in this product is retinol. I'm not sure what the percentage of retinol s, but coming in at number 6 on the ingredients list (after Distilled Water, Jojoba Oil, Apricot Kernel Oil, Squalane, Hyaluronic Acid), it seemed to be decently high. At least, it was high enough for me to see an effect in my skin. And unlike other retinoids I've tried, which can be effective but drying, this one strikes a nice balance between being moisturizing (thanks to the ois and squalane) and being effective. I do think the oil content in the cream helped with my skin quality, too - I've never really been a fan of putting oils on my face (since I have acne and pimples) but it does seem to have moisturized my skin too.
I really liked this product. I just applied it at night (I don't use retinol products in the day) before I went to sleep each night, and that's all I did. Perhaps the only thing I didn't like with this product was the plastic pot (because I have to dip my fingers into the pot, and because both retinol and Vitamin C do degrade in sunlight rather quickly). Also, because of the oils inside, it is a little oilier in texture than you might expect from a typical cream, but not by much. It does take a while to sink in, which is another reason why I use this at night only. I know some would say that you shouldn't formulate products with both retinol and Vitamin C together, but for the Vitamin C Retinol + Anti-Oxidant Moisturizer, I felt that the product worked very well regardless.
I do have too much skincare as it is (I buy stuff in my moments of weakness - don't judge me! :P) so I don't know if I'll ever use it all up. But if I did (or if I tried all the other stuff and found that they sucked), this is one I would definitely come back to. I do highly recommend this for anyone, unless you are sensitive to retinoids. It's a great all-arounder that moisturizes, brightens, improves texture,and helped to improve my skin overall.
(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.) Share | | |