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Niacinamide and Retinol: Can You Use Them Together?

Is it safe to mix niacinamide and retinol together?

Read on

Niacinamide and retinol are common skincare staples. But if you are cautious about what you put on your skin, you might wonder if you can safely mix or layer these two ingredients. Since not all skincare products play well together, it’s smart to question if you can use niacinamide and retinol together. 

Keep scrolling to learn more about niacinamide and retinol. 

Is it safe to mix and layer niacinamide and retinol? 

Yes, you can use both niacinamide and retinol together. 

In fact, research suggests it may even be beneficial to do so. (More on that later.) While retinol can be a bit harsh on the skin, niacinamide is a b-vitamin that’s normally soothing on the skin. 

Many skincare products cleverly combine niacinamide and retinol as complementary ingredients to help reduce side effects from harsh retinoids. 

Here at Strut Health, our compound anti-aging formula contains both tretinoin (a retinoid) and soothing niacinamide. This combination helps our formula to be powerful yet gentle.  

What are the benefits of using niacinamide and retinol together?

While both ingredients are power players all on their own, retinol and niacinamide when used together boast numerous benefits.

Studies show that niacinamide may curb the side effects of retinoic acid (what retinol turns into on your skin). Niacinamide may help to decrease irritation and dryness caused by retinoids. 

Niacinamide also encourages the natural production of hydrating ceramides which helps to protect your skin barrier. This is really useful while using a harsh, exfoliating product like retinol.

How to use niacinamide and retinol together

You can opt for two separate products and use them individually or try a product that combines the two for you. Either way works. 

No matter the products, it’s always best to use any retinol or retinoid product at night. And in the AM use sun protection as retinoids can increase sun sensitivity. 

The order of how you’ll apply them will depend on the type of formula you’re using. If you’re using individual products in serum form, try using niacinamide as a buffing agent and apply this serum before retinol. You can also apply them at the same time as they won’t cancel each other out. 

If you’re using a compound product that contains both, apply to a clean, dry face as directions dictate. It’s always best to apply your thinnest water-based products first, and thicker consistency products last. 


Trying prepping your skin with niacinamide before starting retinol 

If you plan on starting a new anti-aging retinol routine, you can use niacinamide to your advantage. Try using a niacinamide-only product to prep your skin for retinoid use. This may help boost your skin barrier and skin health, giving you a leg up when starting your new retinol routine.


The takeaway: It’s a-okay to mix niacinamide and retinol

Yes, you can mix niacinamide and retinol together. In fact, it’s a really great way to support your skin health while using retinoids. Studies have shown using niacinamide alongside retinoids may help reduce unwanted side effects like irritation and dryness. 

You can opt for individual serums for a DIY mix or try expertly combined prescription-strength products

If you want to try our tretinoin-containing anti-aging formula simply complete a questionnaire-based online doctor's consultation to see if our treatments are right for you and your skin. 

If our doctors find this is a good fit for you, we’ll ship your prescription to your doorstep with free shipping.


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