I’m in my (almost late) twenties…dare I say it?! As I’ve started my clean beauty transition, I’ve also started my anti-aging routine. And Beautycounter is of course on top of it. But let’s back up a minute..why care? Well for starters, our skin is the largest organ in our body and it only takes 26 seconds for anything we put on our skin to get absorbed into our bloodstream.
Okay now that we all have that understanding, let’s jump into bakuchiol.
Now you’re thinking, “how the heckkkk do you pronounce that?” I thought the same thing and broken down it’s “BUH-KOOCH-EE-ALL” and I had no idea what this was or even let’s be frank..what really retinol is. All I knew was that retinol was in almost everything with anti-aging on it.
What is Retinol?
Retinol is pulled from retinoids which are derivative/ a family of Vitamin A. Retinol is what you can purchase over the counter and is a less-strong version of prescription retinoids used for anti-aging. And yes, they do work at reducing fine lines, wrinkles, pores, and hyperpigmentation.
How Exactly Does Retinol Work?
Simply put, retinol speeds up cell turnover which causes them to split and die faster which produces new cells at a faster rate. This is helpful because as we get older our cell turnover rate declines. And then depending on the type of retinoid and percentage this accelerated cell turnover increases your body’s collagen production – which (drumroll) means the reduction of existing wrinkles and helping to prevent new ones. So yes, it does work.
But….Retinol can be Harsh and Irritating
If you are prone to sensitive skin then retinol and retinoids can be too much. And yes, of course, everyone’s tolerance for retinol and retinoids will vary depending on person to person and sometimes the irritation can be temporary or sometimes it can be forever.
Retinoids Aren’t Safe During Pregnancy
The rule of thumb for most dermatologists is not to use retinoids during pregnancy because the FDA classified them as “class C” which (high-level) is a classification rating given to all drugs to rate their risk level to a mother and unborn baby.
Class C is defined as: “Animal reproduction studies have shown an adverse effect on the fetus and there are no adequate and well-controlled studies in humans, but potential benefits may warrant the use of the drug in pregnant women despite potential risks.” Simply put, my interpretation is, if you’re only using a Class C substance for cosmetic purposes, don’t use it when you’re pregnant and put you and your baby at risk.
But is Retinol Safe? And why is it SO Controversial?
I don’t pretend to be an expert in this field so when we get down to the nitty-gritty of the science I tend to back up. I do my research to try and provide as much information and tangible information as I can for you. But based on everything I’ve learned and read, studies do show that retinoid acids can have harmful side effects. Both Canada and the EU have banned them because when they’ve done their tests, it’s shown evidence of danger to human health and the environment. So what it boils down to, is why take the risk? And that is 100% in my opinion. I am sharing this so you can hopefully form your own opinion.
One thing I found throughout all the controversy and one thing everyone agrees on is that retinol and the sun are a dangerous combination. Retinol makes you more susceptible to sun damage and sun damage causes not only wrinkles but also skin cancer.
Again, why take the risk?
Let me Introduce Countertime to you, which is Beautycounter’s most advanced and innovative line designed specifically for anti-aging. Countertime was created from two of the most powerful plant-derived ingredients. Bakuchiol (the famous new ingredient) shows skin-care results that are comparable to retinol, but without harmful side effects such as skin irritation and increased sun sensitivity—and Swiss Alpine Rose boosts the skin’s antioxidant defense.
What is Bakuchiol?
It is derived from the seeds of the babchi plant which grows in India. It’s not new to the skin world, ayurvedic skincare and Chinese medicine for centuries, but it is fairly new to the western world. Bakuchiol is an antioxidant and is known to have cancer-fighting properties. The best part? It’s completely safe. Bakuchiol is also known to provide the same aesthetic results as Retinol.
What are the Benefits of Countertime?
- Optimizes hydration to strengthen your skin barrier function and support skin elasticity which helps wrinkles go away.
- Regenerates skin cells to help smooth and refine the surface of the skin & your skin’s pores.
- Defends against daily environmental stressors (sun, pollutants) by protecting the skin with natural antioxidants.
- Gives your skin hydration and aging IS losing hydration and skin being damaged by environmental/internal stressors, and Countertime reduces both of these processes to give you younger-looking skin.
A Deeper Dive into Countertime
I would say my skin is generally oily, which is caused by being dry (weird, right?) Since my skin is already feeling oily, any moisture goes a long way! All of the Countertime products are highly recommended and amazing. I’m going to detail each item so you can decide which is best for you:
Countertime Lipid Defense Cleansing Oil – this oil is luxurious, lightweight and is great for cleansing. It will gently remove makeup and other impurities without stripping essential lipids from the skin that you need. If you’re a love a good oil cleanser and have dry skin, then you will LOVE this.
Countertime Mineral Boost Hydrating Essence – this is lightweight but will deeply nourish, this is a milky moisturize that delivers vital nutrients to the skin’s moisture barrier which will instantly boost hydration and radiance for your skin. I love this and use it with my serums! It’s almost like a toner but not at all drying! It will leave your skin glowing and moisturized and ready to absorb all the good stuff all while protecting it!
Countertime Tripeptide Radiance Serum – this serum will transform your skin’s firmness and elasticity while reducing the appearance of any/all fine lines and wrinkles. I don’t notice my skin to have many wrinkles, but this product is what everyone swears by! It tightens and evens out skin tone while keeping skin hydrated! This will be your alternative to any Retinol serum that you may use currently.
Countertime Antioxidant Soft Cream – this is a revitalizing cream that will improve the skin’s barrier function and while boosting hydration, it helps protect it from daily environmental stressors. It’s really a great lightweight moisturizer that absorbs quickly and layers so well with any makeup for daily use.
Countertime Tetrapeptide Supreme Cream – “Supremely” rich and deep in hydrating, this cream supports elasticity and visibly firms while smoothing skin texture to minimize the look of any/all of fine lines and wrinkles. I will warn you, this cream is THICK! If your skin needs more moisture then this will be your soulmate!
Ultra Renewal Eye Cream – this is a high-performing eye cream that revitalizes the whole eye area and will reduce the appearance of under-eye shadows and crow’s feet for a smooth and firm appearance. This was something I needed, it’s super moisturizing and leaves my eyes looking visibly brighter, softer and any trace of under-eye bags are gone.
My Personal Experience with Countertime
I’m 27 and so I wasn’t sure if the Countertime line would be right for me. However, your skin actually starts its aging process at the age of 25, and I will do every preventative measure there is. The great part is that it will protect your skin from aging years later.
Still being at a young age, I didn’t think I would see a huge difference from Beautycounter’s Countermatch collection. But of course, I was wrong. I couldn’t believe the amount of hydration it gave my skin even just after 1 day of using it, and I can see and feel the difference in my skin. I have always struggled with under-eye bags, and they were gone. My skin felt less oily and more hydrated.
(DISCLAIMER, Beautycounter isn’t a blog sponsor and never has been for me. I’m just a believer and a huge fan of all of their products! But yes, I do earn a commission each time you purchase the product through my links! Which I truly appreciate when you do.)
~ XOXO, the forever young, Amanda