REVIEW: Paula’s Choice Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment - The Moisturizer
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REVIEW: Paula’s Choice Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment

Header The Moisturizer - REVIEW: Paula's Choice Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment
Retinoids are among my favorite skincare ingredients. These derivatives of vitamin A are beautifully effective at reducing wrinkles and fine lines while also being effective to treat acne. But wait… you haven’t tried the Paula’s Choice Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment yet? Then you definitely have to read this review and learn how to use it!


Today I will talk about a new product, specifically the Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment from Paula’s Choice. This treatment has become a favorite for many, so if you want to know my opinion and my experience, keep reading!


You can get the Paula’s Choice Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment on Paula’s Choice, on Amazon, on Niche Beauty and on FeelUnique.


As you can see, the name itself tells us that it is a treatment with 1% retinol. If you have read my guide on retinoids, you will remember that these types of ingredients are very effective at improving wrinkles and fine lines, as well as helping us alleviate acne. Specifically, retinol requires two transformations to become retinoic acid, so that the skin can absorb it and provide us with the results we seek.

And when can you use a treatment like this? In my retinoid guide I indicate that it is necessary to acquire a certain tolerance to these types of ingredients, since they are potentially irritating and if we use a very powerful form without the skin being used to their use, the negative consequences can outperform positive results, as irritation actually promotes skin aging. Therefore, a product like this, with 1% retinol, already requires that we have been using other milder forms of retinoids for a while.

And now that you know the main function of this product and in which cases you can start to incorporate it into your skincare routines, you are probably wondering what it contributes specifically. In addition to that 1% retinol, among its ingredients we find various forms of peptides (which also help to improve wrinkles and fine lines, as I indicate in my guide on the topic), licorice and soybean extract (both with antioxidant and soothing properties) and vitamin E, which also gives us its antioxidant properties. This product does not incorporate perfumes or essential oils among its ingredients.

You already know that, since it is a retinol serum, you must always use it in your night routines, allowing your skin to acquire tolerance and not forgetting the sunscreen in all your morning routines (without exception). If you want to use it correctly, I advise you to follow the directions in my guide on retinoids to avoid damaging your skin.

One aspect that I appreciate about Paula’s Choice is that all of their packaging is developed to adequately protect our products from UV radiation. In addition, a product like this, with a pump-type applicator, also protects the product against other agents (such as all those derived from contact with the air or with our skin).

In terms of texture, it is a very comfortable product to use. It is a very light cream that is easily absorbed. With just two drops of the product you have more than enough amount to spread it all over your face. It has a slight yellowish color and its scent reminds me of the Ceramide-Enriched Moisturizer of the same range.

And what results does this retinol serum bring? You will remember that I have used other retinoid serums before: Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion from The Ordinary, Retinol B3 from La Roche-Posay and Crystal Retinal 3 from Medik8. Perhaps with the latter, the Crystal Retinal 3, I observed a more effective result and I could clearly see how the expression lines decreased (it must also be taken into account that this serum incorporates 0.03% retinaldehyde, which requires less conversion to transformed into retinoic acid). Although I am satisfied with the results that this Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment brings, I will continue to use products with an increasingly higher concentration until I start using retinoic acid.

Do you want a tip to optimize the results provided by this serum? Use a niacinamide serum like this one from Paula’s Choice as a preliminary step. With it, you will not only improve the absorption of retinoids, but you will also be able to reduce redness and rebalance the oil levels of your skin. Sounds great, right?



You already know that all your beauty routines should start by cleansing. Next, apply a toner and, after this, you can add this serum. Finish your routine with a moisturizer. This product should always be used in your night routines, following the directions in my guide on retinoids.

The Moisturizer - Steps of the skincare routine: Serum

This graphic aims to help you understand in which part of your skincare routine you should use each product.
You don’t need to do all the steps from this routine (but you should always cleanse, moisturize and use sunscreen).
Remember it’s key to do a patch test every time you consider adding new products to your skincare routine.


Water (Aqua), Dimethicone (skin-softening), Glycerin (skin-replenishing), Butylene Glycol (hydrating), Isononyl Isononanoate (emollient), Castor Isostearate Succinate (skin-softening ), Glyceryl Stearate (texture enhancer), C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate (emollient), Dimethicone Crosspolymer (texture enhancer), PEG-33 (stabilizer), Polysorbate 20 (texture enhancer), Behenyl Alcohol (texture enhancer), PEG-100 Stearate (texture enhancer), Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate (stabilizer), Polymethylsilsesquioxane (texture enhancer), Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate (vitamin C/antioxidant), Retinol (skin-restoring), Ceramide NG (skin-replenishing) , Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7 (skin-restoring), Palmitoyl Hexapeptide-12 (skin-restoring), Sodium Hyaluronate (skin-replenishing ), Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate (antioxidant plant extracts/skin-soothing), Glycyrrhiza Glabra Root Extract (licorice extract/antioxidant/skin-soothing), Avena Sativa Kernel Extract (oat extract/antioxidant/skin-soothing), Arctium Lappa Root Extract (burdock extract/antioxidant/skin-soothing), Salix Alba Bark Extract (willow bark extract/antioxidant/skin-soothing), Glycine Soja Sterols (antioxidant/skin-softening ), Lecithin (skin-restoring), Allantoin (skin-soothing), Tocopheryl Acetate (vitamin E/antioxidant), Hydrolyzed Soy Protein (antioxidant/skin-softening), Sorbitan Laurate (texture enhancer), Acetyl Dipeptide-1 Cetyl Ester (skin-soothing), Disodium EDTA (stabilizer), Hydroxyethylcellulose (texture enhancer), Palmitoyl Tripeptide-1 (skin-restoring), Sodium Hydroxide (pH adjuster), Tribehenin (emollient), Caprylyl Glycol (skin-softening), Ethylhexylglycerin (skin-softening), Pentylene Glycol (hydrating), PEG-75 Shea Butter Glycerides (emollient), PPG-12/SMDI Copolymer (stabilizer), PEG-10 Phytosterol (fatty acid-based emollient), PEG-8 Dimethicone (skin-softening), PEG-14 (texture enhancer), Magnesium Aluminum Silicate (texture enhancer), Arachidyl Glucoside (texture enhancer), Arachidyl Alcohol (texture enhancer), Sclerotium Gum (texture enhancer), Carbomer (gel-based texture enhancer), Phenoxyethanol (preservative), Benzoic Acid (preservative).

You can get the Paula’s Choice Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment on Paula’s Choice, on Amazon, on Niche Beauty and on FeelUnique.


Have you tried this product? Do you use retinoids? Are you worried about fine lines and wrinkles? Let me know in the comment section!


If you liked this article and want to continue learning how to take better care of your skin, you will surely be interested in reading these other posts:

Do you want to learn to take better care of your skin? You can see an index of all my informative posts here


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The Moisturizer

I’m Nacho and I’m passionate about skincare. I really enjoy learning and sharing my knowledge about skincare and I read scientific papers so you don’t have to. I want to break stereotypes because I believe skincare has no gender: skin is skin.  

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