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A lot of beauty brands tout Retinol as a safer skin-care ingredient and that couldn’t be further from the truth. Enter Beautycounter Countertime Review and Video an honest review of this new line formulated to target the signs of aging with its safer plant based complex, Retinatural.
THE PROBLEM WITH RETINOL (Vitamin A and its derivatives)…
I’ve always taken an interest in my skin particularly after suffering melasma for nearly a decade. Upon seeking help from a dermatologist, I was immediately prescribed Retinol (and Hydroquinone, which is for a later post.) “You must use Retinol-containing creams once you hit your late 30s” I read and was told over and over. I believed it.
I started the search for a Retinol-containing product that was also healthy and was overwhelmed with the information. I tried Vitamin A, instead of Retinol and was ultimately still confused and my skin was dry, sensitive to the sun, irritated and unhappy.
Was I ever surprised to find, after I joined Beautycounter as a consultant, that Retinol was on Beautycounter’s Never List!
Why was that? I didn’t understand, and was even a little indignant. Wasn’t that the ONE product I was supposed to make SURE I was using? I had even painstakingly searched for the best one I could find.
Since then I’ve learned a little about why I want to avoid Retinol, why I have stopped using it, and why I encourage you to look into what it is and some of the results from studies done with Retinol.
WHAT IS RETINOL?
Retinoids are a family of vitamin A derivatives best known for their use in anti-aging skin-care products. Retinoids include retinol, Retinyl palmitate, retinyl acetate, retinyl linoleate, retinyl propionate, and the fun-to pronounce hydroxypinacolone retinoate.
HOW DOES RETINOL WORK?
When retinoids—including naturally derived ones popular in cleaner skin-care lines—are used on the skin, they convert to retinoic acid. (Prescription-based products such as Retin-A and Tretinoin are synthetic forms of retinoic acid.)
Retinoids work by prompting surface skin cells to turn over and die rapidly, making way for new cell growth underneath.
IS IT SAFE?
I’ve personally come to believe it’s not worth taking a risk on retinol, when I once previously believed it was safe. I mean my doctor prescribed it so it had to be, right?
Studies show that retinoic acid can have harmful side effects, including being a skin irritant and making the skin sensitive to the sun’s damaging rays. In fact, both the EU and Canada have restricted the use of retinol—the EU cites a “precautionary principle,” which means that if an ingredient has shown evidence of danger to human health or the environment, it takes preventative action.
There are studies showing that sun exposure after Retinol usage increases risk for tumors when exposed to sunlight.
Research on retinol and its derivatives shows:
Most common adverse effects from topical use are skin irritations including redness, excessive desquamation (skin peeling), and sensitization to sunlight.
The Environmental Working Group assigned retinol and its derivatives, retinyl palmitate, retinyl acetate, and retinyl linoleate, a rating of 9 on its hazard scale, linking safety concerns such as skin irritation and sun sensitivity.
As a precaution, topical application of retinol and retinoic acid should be avoided by pregnant women and women planning to become pregnant.
Due to its photochemical instability, sunscreen is required while using products containing retinol or its derivatives, or use should be avoided during the daytime.
Too much retinol can be harmful: the main supplier for retinol in the cosmetics industry recommends usage not to exceed 0.1% due to its potential for skin sensitivity
Using Retinol is a personal decision, one only you can make. But I want you to know, there are actually natural alternatives that work just as well, if not better, without the toxicity!
WHAT IS COUNTERTIME?
Countertime is a new line specifically formulated to target the signs of aging.
Countertime Regimen Set
STEP 1: Cleanse Countertime Lipid Defense Cleansing Oil
STEP 2: Prep Countertime Mineral Boost Hydrating Essence
STEP 3: Treat Countertime Tripeptide Radiance Serum
STEP 4: Protect Countertime Antioxidant Soft Cream (Day) Countertime Tetrapeptide Supreme Cream (Night)
This 4-step Countertime Regimen is the ultimate solution to help
reverse signs of aging and keep skin in peak, youthful performance.
The formulas, featuring our plant-derived Retinatural Complex of
bakuchiol and Swiss Alpine rose, provide a safer alternative to retinol,
delivering similar skin benefits without the potential side effects.
Countertime Lipid Defense Cleansing Oil
Inspired by Asian beauty rituals and informed by Japanese technology, this luxurious, lightweight cleansing oil gently yet effectively removes makeup and other impurities without stripping essential lipids from the skin. Rich in vitamin E, fatty acids, and our plant-derived Retinatural Complex, the formula reinforces the skin’s fragile moisture barrier for a soothed, nourished complexion.
Think fancy oil cleansing method. I was really happy with how clean, supple and smooth my skin felt after committing to one month of cleansing this way. I did use a Norwex face cloth as suggested by an esthetician friend so my skin felt completely clean.
Countertime Mineral Boost Hydrating Essence
Lightweight but deeply nourishing, this milky moisturizing essence lends vital nutrients to the skin’s moisture barrier—instantly boosting hydration and radiance. Formulated with RetinaturalComplex, mineral-rich sea water, and a fermented blend of sugars, it renews and balances the skin (pH) and preps it for the treatment steps that follow.
Toning was a step I didn’t understand until committing to using a skincare regimen. Toner balances pH leaving skin ready for a treatment step and I notice I use less product by including this step in my routine.
This Countertime toner is amazing! No stripping the skin with drying agents or that tight feeling toners in the past have left me with. You press this product into your skin, leaving your skin feeling balanced and ready for treatment.
Countertime Tripeptide Radiance Serum
This transformative rejuvenating treatment visibly increases skin firmness and elasticity, while reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Formulated with a powerful blend of peptides, amino acids, and our Retinatural Complex, it helps enhance the skin’s moisture barrier function to optimize hydration for a radiant complexion.
The treatment step is what gives the most bang for our buck if you will. I am loving how concentrated this serum is. One squirt is all you need so this bottle will last a long time!
Countertime Antioxidant Soft Cream
Formulated with plant-derived Retinatural Complex and nasturtium flower extract, this velvety, revitalizing cream works to visibly plump and firm the skin while boosting hydration. Skin is left healthy and glowing.
I use one pump, rub that in and add another. If your skin is combination or more oily, I think you will love this cream and only need one pump.
Countertime Tetrapeptide Supreme Cream
Supremely rich and deeply hydrating, this cream supports elasticity and visibly firms while smoothing skin texture to minimize the look of fine lines and wrinkles. With continued use, wake up to more radiant, youthful-looking skin.
I initially only had this cream, so I would use it both day and night. If you have really dry skin, you may opt to do the same. This is by far the most luxurious and hydrating night cream I have ever used.
Countertime Ultra Renewal Eye Cream
This high-performance eye cream revitalizes the eye area for a youthful, brighter appearance. With a targeted combination of our plant derived RetinaturalComplex and Persian silk tree extract, it reduces under-eye shadows and crow’s feet for a smooth, firmed look.
So far, I am noticing a more bright appearance around my tired mama eyes after using this cream for just a short time.
Countertime: My Overall Personal Experience
At the last conference I attended, I received a discovery set of Countertime to use and test out. I’ve been exclusively using the line for about one month at the time of writing this post. After just one use, I noticed my skin felt hydrated, with no residue or greasy feeling. I also noticed my skin to be more glowing the next morning. If you were a Beautycounter Countermatch lover, you know that line made your skin feel so soft and Countertime is the same way but with the anti-aging properties every woman over 30 desires!
I also love how simple this line is. Four steps and you’re done. I realize to some of you that may sound like a lot, but as someone who previously battled melasma (no longer thanks to this product) it feels like a breeze! The products also quickly absorb so you’re not waiting around to apply the next step. Anti-aging, plus time and space saving for the win!
Beautycounter Countertime Before and After Photos
I will say before using Countertime, I was happy with my skin. I was sticking to a regimen along with my Overnight Resurfacing Peel and not looking for or expecting huge improvements overall. As someone with dry skin, my biggest skin success initially with this line is balanced hydration.
This photo is after two weeks of Countertime use. I noticed my skin was more glowing after just one use, but I am surprised at how much more calm my skin looks in the after photo. I’ll keep taking photos and update this post over time.