Solve Your Skincare Woes: Active Ingredients for Sensitive Skin

A cocktail of moisture-boosting hyaluronic acid and fine-line-refining retinol proves to be the key to treating skin’s changing needs.

Get to know the active ingredients that give glowing skin.

Getting to know your products and understanding what each ingredient on the label actually does is the best way to level up your beauty routine. The key to mixing and matching ingredients – or creating a skincare cocktail if you please – is to play into each of their strengths. And a blend of hyaluronic acid and retinol proves to be a particularly powerful combination. Here’s why:

Hyaluronic acid

Often described as being like a tall glass of water for thirsty skin, hyaluronic acid (HA) is the ultimate hydrator. With the ability to hold up to 1000 times its weight in water, HA works by attracting and maintaining moisture in the skin. Serums and creams containing HA quickly increase the skin’s moisture level, leaving you with a plump and glowing complexion. Beauty experts recommend using a mist or essence before layering HA products to supercharge their efficacy. 

Dermalogica Circular Hydration Serum and Lancôme Advanced Génifique Youth Activating Concentrate are two intensely hydrating topical formulas. Powered by small molecules that are able to deeply penetrate skin, these products promise to do the heavy lifting and leave you hydrated for longer.

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Supercharge your beauty routine through careful combinations of ingredients.


If you’re lusting after luminous skin, it’s time to introduce the magic of retinol to your routine. A powerhouse ingredient, retinol (also known as vitamin A) is an active ingredient that helps promote skin-cell renewal and the natural production of collagen. 

There is a lot of buzz around retinol in the beauty sphere but the key to mastering this much-loved ingredient is finding the right formula for your skin and ensuring you are only using the ingredient at night. The general rule of thumb is to start slow and steady, working your way up to daily use and higher strengths as your complexion adjusts. Retinol promotes skin cell turnover to a fresh complexion, but make sure you limit your sun exposure when using. Formulated with 0.5%, Ella Baché Retinol Night Treatment Serum can be a good entry point for beginners but be sure to introduce slowly into your routine.

Another great starting point is Ultraceuticals Ultra A Perfecting Serum Mild. Working to (gently) refine texture and diminish the appearance of fine lines, the addition of hyaluronic acid in this formula will leave you hydrated and radiant – but once again, make sure you ease this into your routine and if you have sensitive skin, ensure you speak to a consultant to understand if these products are right for your complexion. 

To really take your beauty routine to the next level, try Beauty Award winning La Prairie Skin Caviar Nighttime Oil. According to Jessie Whittaker, founder of The Calmm: “La Prairie Skin Caviar is a lightweight oil with a silky smooth application that left my skin looking hydrated and feeling alive.” Sign us up.

A reminder, that retinol should not be used when pregnant or breastfeeding.

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Add these products to your (skin care) top shelf for the perfect serve of glowing skin.


Combining the power of provitamin B5 (pathenol) and vitamin B3 (niacinamide) with hyaluronic acid, this oil-free serum formula works to restore the skin’s moisture balance. Creating a perfectly supple and dewy glow, consider Ultraceuticals Ultra B2 Hydrating Serum your key to boosting tired, stressed or dehydrated skin.

Ultraceuticals Ultra B2 Hydrating Serum


For a high-performance night oil that targets premature signs of ageing as well as breakouts, Dermalogica’s Retinol Clearing Oil is an essential step. Formulated with salicylic acid (a breakout-clearing superstar), time-released retinol works to turn back the clock with argan, rosehip seed and golden jojoba oils to nourish the skin.

Elizabeth Arden

Formulated with maximum potency and encapsulated for purity, Elizabeth Arden’s Hyaluronic Ceramide Capsules work to reclaim skin’s youthful bounce. Powered by moisture sealing Double-Lock Hydration, the silky and lightweight serum draws in moisture, which skin-strengthening ceramides then lock in. Bonus points for biodegradable capsules.


Developed after 20 years of research, Lancôme’s Advanced Génifique has been updated with a new complex of seven prebiotic and probiotic fractions to act on the skin microbiome. These fractions work to help strengthen the skin’s barrier, improving texture, radiance, elasticity and firmness.

La Prairie

In its iconic cobalt-blue packaging, La Prairie Skin Caviar Nighttime Oil is a cult buy for good reason. A unique blend of caviar-derived retinol and caviar lipids, this luxurious addition to your skincare line-up promises to smooth lines, lift and firm skin and lock in moisture.