Retinol – On a budget

To get me out of the flat for a bit, my mum took me on a small charity shop trip. Which soon turned into a beauty trip when I noticed my mum looking at the ingredients in many of the anti-aging creams on sale.

She went on to enlighten me that she had recently watched a programme on the BBC about beauty products and whether they actually help our skin or not. The programme went on to state that the best thing to use for anti-aging is a small amount of Retinol, 0.1% to start with and then you can increase.

After looking on a lot of the ingredients listed we found the cheaper anti-aging products had no retinol in. The higher end products had Retinyl Palmitate in which we found confusing as we were none the wiser as to whether this was the same as Retinol.

Upon perusing several internet sites, I found the difference to be that Retinol is another name for Vitamin A and Retinyl Palmitate is Retinol mixed with palmitic acid. As Retinol has been known to be rather abrasive on the skin, mixing it with this acid (I think) reduces its effectiveness (ie. 0.2% Retinol is not the same as 0.2% Retinyl Palmitate). Please visit for a much better description!

After this, I set myself the challenge of finding anti-aging creams, reasonably priced which contain Retinol. Here is what I found:

  1. Face Theory Regenerating Moisturiser M4 £13.99

Contains 0.6% Retinol, has got great 5 star reviews and free delivery.

  1. THE ORDINARY Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion 30ml £8

Contains 2% Retinoid (not sure if this is the same as retinol the ingredients just say ‘Retinol’) with free delivery

Mixed reviews

  1. La Roche-Posay Redermic [R] Anti-Ageing Concentrate Intense 30ml £19.66

Contains 0.3% pure retinol

This doesn’t seem to have as great reviews as the Face Theory moisturiser but still pretty high.

  1. Anew Reversalist Infinite Effects Night Treatment Cream RRP £28 (on offer £20)

For some reason at time of writing I could not get the direct link to work, but visit and look though anti-aging creams

I couldn’t really do a list without including Avon 😊

Contains 0.1% retinol

This is the lowest retinol concentration, but it does have good reviews and is a good start if you have sensitive skin, and then work your way up to 0.5%.

(I am donating 25% of the profits I make through Avon to Mind and The Samaritans)


The above 4 are by no means an exhaustive list. These were ones available in the UK (I found a lot from America!) at a reasonable price that I found. Some retinol creams go into the £100s. If you have any more recommendations I would love to see them!


Money Saving Ideas

As I am currently on sick leave due to my depression, I have been trying to find ways to cut back on certain expenses. These were the steps I took:

  1. Looked at all my direct debits going out each month to see if I could reduce/cancel any
    • As my phone contract was up, I found a great deal with iD mobile for only £5 per month you get 250 minutes, 5000 texts and 2.25GB of data. Thus, I reduced my £17 per month phone bill to £5.
    • I had also fallen into the ‘forgetting/not bothering’ to cancel a magazine subscription It was one of those things where I think I got 6 issues for £6 but then they carry on charging you after those six issues. Of course, you can cancel at any time, it just wasn’t high on my list of priorities before! Ok, so that’s £36 per quarter gone.
    • Gym membership! I know it’s January and I am cancelling my gym membership! One of the reasons I joined this gym was its close proximity to work, seeing as I am not in work much and I hadn’t been very often at all, this too I cancelled. I always make sure if I do join a gym that I don’t get a contract as I am so bad at going! £25 per month gone.
  2. I am sure this is on many a money saving list – but it works. Taking your own lunch to work. If you spend on average £3 a day at work just on lunch, that’s £60 every 4 weeks on lunch.
  3. When certain items are on offer in supermarkets I tend to stock up a little on long life goods, as I find if I don’t, I always need them when they are full price. These include but are not limited to:
    1. Toilet Rolls
    2. Laundry Detergent
    3. Cereal
  4. Charity shops are always good for clothes shopping. Sometimes they can be overpriced, on the other hand, you can get great deals on clothes and bric-a-brac. Some of my bargains include; a brand new Next dress for £1, books 4 for £1 and a Wedgewood cup for £1.

I would love to hear other peoples suggestions as I am always interested in saving money!