Perfect for first-time retinol users, the BEAUTY BAY SkinHit 0.2% Retinol Complex Serum With Retinol And Peptides is ideal for those who want to improve fine lines and wrinkles while also improving clarity of the complexion. The vegan-friendly serum is fragrance free and should be used a couple of times a week before building tolerance to apply daily, every night. You can apply alone onto cleansed skin or add a few drops to your favourite night-time moisturiser or overnight mask, but remember to apply a broad-spectrum SPF in the morning. Disclaimer: The links used are not affiliated and are placed for you to discover the product. 

Presented in a 50ml bottle with dropper dispenser, the Skincare by BEAUTY BAY serum features the following ingredients:

Aqua (Water) - Solvent for ingredients to mix. 

Propanediol - Produced sustainably from corn sugar, it acts as a humectant and moisturiser while also acting as a solvent for ingredients to mix.

Polysorbate 20 - Helps water and oils ingredients to mix without separating.

Retinol - 0.2% proven cell-communicating ingredient to revitalise the skin. 

Acetyl Hexapeptide-1 - Synthetic peptide composed of the amino acids alanine, arginine, histidine, leucine, phenylalanine and tryptophan that helps defend and calm the skin from environmental factors while also promoting a more uniformed and fresher skin tone. 

Sodium Citrate -  Neutralises metal ions that can occur from water used in a formula while also adjusting the pH to the preferred level.

Xanthan Gum -  Ingredient to help thicken a products formula while also stopping oil and water from separating.

Citric Acid - Sets the pH of a formula to the perfect value. 

Sodium Benzoate - Preservative to keep the product nicer for longer but is usually combined with the one below as its not strong enough on its own.

Potassium Sorbate - Preservative to keep the products formula stable for longer and is combined with the one above for maximum effectiveness.

Disodium EDTA - Chelating that neutralises metal ions from the water ingredient used to keep the product stable for longer. 

1,2-Hexanediol -  Moisture-binding and synthetic preservative.

Tocopherol - Antioxidant vitamin E that is easily absorbed by the skin to provide emollient benefits and photoprotection against UVB rays (always wear an SPF though). 

Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil -  Emollient plant oil that helps keep skin hydrated and protects the skins surface, while also repairing and supporting the skins barrier function. 

BHT - Synthetic antioxidant that is used as a preservative.

BHA - Synthetic antioxidant that is used as a preservative.

Applying 1-2 drops to the face, the serum spreads easily over the skin while absorbing quickly to leave a smooth and hydrated base. I typically wait about 10 minutes after applying any retinol to allow the formula to have fully absorbed before then following on with my night moisturiser, but you can add a few drops into your moisturiser (to buffer it) for your skin to become tolerant to retinol overtime. Its important to remember when using any retinol product that its not a sprint but rather a long marathon to reach the goal of applying every night slowly while still respecting the skins integrity. The budget-friendly retinol is priced at £5.00 at BEAUTY BAY and available here: SkinHit 0.2% Retinol Complex Serum With Retinol And Peptides x Neil.