Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment

$55 - 1 fl. oz.
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Skin Care > Retinol Products > Retinoids
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Taking a cue from prescription retinoid products, CLINICAL 1% Retinol Treatment combines a potent dose of anti-aging superstar ingredient retinol (the entire vitamin A molecule) in a lightweight, elegant moisturizing base loaded with beneficial ingredients including peptides, vitamin C, and numerous anti-irritants. Whereas prescription retinoids give you a great active ingredient, they typically come in a bland moisturizing base void of other anti-aging ingredients. Paula's Choice aimed to change that and so combined over-the-counter retinol in a strength research has shown can make a considerable difference for numerous skin concerns, from deep wrinkles to uneven skin tone and loss of firmness.

This fragrance-free treatment is formulated for all skin types, but is especially good for those struggling with persistent breakouts and advanced signs of aging (sun damage) including wrinkles and brown spots.

This treatment is considerably stronger than most over-the-counter retinol products so should be used sparingly (a pea-sized dab is enough for the entire face) and, at least for the first few weeks, only 1-3 times per week, at night. It may be combined with a prescription retinoid product, but if you opt to do so, pay close attention to how your skin responds and adjust frequency of application accordingly. May also be applied at the same time as other products with retinol, though again, pay attention to how your skin responds. The goal with retinol is to gain its many benefits without tipping the scale in favor of irritation. Also, remember that it's imperative to protect your skin every day with a product rated SPF 25 or greater—any anti-aging routine must include daily sun protection or you simply won't get the results you want.

  • Fragrance-free formula is an elegant alternative to bland prescription retinoid products.
  • Contains a potent dose of anti-aging superstar retinol plus numerous other well-researched anti-aging ingredients.
  • Easy to use and may be combined with other anti-aging treatments, including products with retinol and vitamin C.
  • Capable of improving multiple signs of aging, including deep wrinkles and loss of firmness.
  • 1% retinol is an amount not everyone's skin will be able to tolerate, at least not for frequent use.

Contains the highest concentration of stabilized retinol available without a prescription. Improves skin’s firmness and elasticity; Smooths deep wrinkles and fine lines; Reduces dark spots and uneven skin tone; Refines pore size and skin texture; Reduces breakouts; Helps fade red marks from past breakouts and prevent new breakouts; Contains antioxidants to repair and soothing ingredients to reduce irritation; 100% fragrance- and colorant-free; Received a 92% “excellent” approval rating from our consumer panel test

Water, Dimethicone (silicone slip agent), Glycerin (skin-repairing ingredient), Butylene Glycol (slip agent/penetration enhancer), Isononyl Isononanoate (emollient), Castor Isostearate Succinate (skin-conditioning agent), Glyceryl Stearate (emulsifier), C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate (thickener), Dimethicone Crosspolymer (silicone thickener/texture enhancer), PEG-33 (binding agent), Polysorbate 20 (emulsifier), Behenyl Alcohol (fatty alcohol thickener), Retinol (cell-communicating ingredient), Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate (vitamin C/antioxidant), Ceramide 2 (skin-repairing ingredient), Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Palmitoyl Hexapeptide-12, Palmitoyl Tripeptide-1 (cell-communicating ingredients), Sodium Hyaluronate (skin-repairing ingredient), Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Extract, Arctium Lappa (Burdock) Root Extract, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract (antioxidant plant extracts/anti-irritants), Glycine Soja (Soybean) Sterols (antioxidant/skin-conditioning agent), Lecithin (cell-communicating ingredient), Allantoin (anti-irritant), Tocopheryl Acetate (vitamin E/antioxidant), Hydrolyzed Soy Protein (antioxidant), Sorbitan Laurate (emulsifier), Acetyl Dipeptide-1 Cetyl Ester (anti-irritant), Disodium EDTA (stabilizer), Hydroxyethylcellulose (thickener), Sodium Hydroxide (pH adjuster), Tribehenin (emollient), Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin (skin conditioning agents),Pentylene Glycol (slip agent), PEG-100 Stearate (thickener), PEG-75 Shea Butter Glycerides (emollient), PPG-12/SMDI Copolymer (film-forming agent), PEG-10 Phytosterol (fatty acid-based thickener), PEG-8 Dimethicone (silicone-based skin-conditioning agent), PEG-14 (thickener), Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate (binding agent), Polymethylsilsesquioxane (silicone-based opacifying agent), Magnesium Aluminum Silicate (slip agent), Arachidyl Glucoside (emulsifier), Sclerotium Gum (thickener) Arachidyl Alcohol (thickener), Benzoic Acid (preservative), Carbomer (gel-based thickener), Phenoxyethanol (preservative).

Disclosure: In addition to reviewing thousands of cosmetic products from hundreds of brands over the past 30 years, Paula also has her own line of products called Paula's Choice. Paula and her team's goal is to help you find the best products possible for your skin whether they are from Paula's Choice or some other product line. Paula's commitment to this is so strong she is the only cosmetics company owner in the world that recommends products other than her own. Paula and the Paula's Choice Research Team formulate our products to meet or exceed the criteria we use to review products from every other brand on this site. We review all products the same way using the same research, objective comments, and praise no matter whose product it is.

Paula's Choice was created in 1995 in response to the many readers who asked Paula to develop her own products. Given Paula's unique overview of the cosmetics industry, 30+ years of research, and earnest desire to help people find the best products for their skin-care needs, creating her own products was a natural extension of her work. Paula's Choice range of products are designed to meet the needs and preferences of just about every skin type and concern imaginable using only proven ingredients substantiated by published research.

Paula's Choice products provide:

  • State-of-the-art formulas based on reliable, published skin-care research
  • Proven effective solutions for wrinkles, acne, rosacea, and sensitive skin
  • Gentle yet effective products for those seeking a natural skin-care routine
  • Fragrance-free formulas (because it is what's best for your skin)
  • Cruelty-free formulas: Paula's Choice does not test on animals during any stages of product development—nor do we contract with third parties to conduct animal testing on our behalf
  • Environmentally-friendly products that feature minimalist packaging that ensures product efficacy
  • 100% Customer Satisfaction Guarantee from our world-class Customer Service Team

Paula's Choice products and Paula's work is routinely praised by noted dermatologists and other professionals. New York-based dermatologist Dr. Debra Jaliman stated that "I have a lot of respect for Paula Begoun and the way she thoroughly researches her subject. Her recommendations about cosmetics and skin care are deservedly influential." Eminent Seattle-based dermatologist Dr. Brandith Irwin concurs: "She takes a complex subject and makes it easy to understand!"

For more information about Paula's Choice, call (800) 831-4088 or visit

Member Comments

Summary of Member Comments

  1. How would you rate the results? (4 = Best)

    4 / 4 Best
  2. Was this product a good value? (4 = Best)

    4 / 4 Best
  3. Would you recommend this product? (4 = Best)

    4 / 4 Best
Page of 1
  1. Scott B.
    Reviewed on Wednesday, October 29, 2014
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    Game Changer
    • Ever since last fall when the C-15 Booster came out, PC has been cranking out one new product after another. This, like c-15, stands above all others in how it really does improve your skin in a number of significant ways: smaller pores, firmer skin that's much more evenly toned, and significant reduction in both fine and deeper lines. It is very potent, so follow the package directions carefully! Part of my core skin routine, forever.

  2. amy
    Reviewed on Friday, September 12, 2014
    • Results
      4 / 4
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Please do not buy this product...I am afraid they might run out before I need more! Seriously..unfreakingbelievable REAL DRASTIC..INCREDIBLE results. Never discontinue this or run put. I adore PC but this tops them far.

  3. Anonymous
    Reviewed on Saturday, July 19, 2014
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    Feels Amazing On Application!
    • Let me start by saying that this is strong, so please be careful. I used it 3 times the first week I received it, a few days later I woke up to peeling skin. It wasn't sore or red, just peeling skin. I currently use skinceuticals 1% retinol so I thought I could handle this, so please be careful. I love this much more that Paula's other retinol serum not because it's stronger but because this is a lotion and spreads so nicely and makes your skin feel amazing! Just wish I could use more often!

  4. JEANNE C.
    Reviewed on Sunday, June 15, 2014
    • Results
      4 / 4
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    New Packaging, too!
    • I've only used three times this first week, but I can already see positive results. This is a much stronger product than the RESIST 0.1% serum that I've been using, so I want to be cautious like the instructions advise. I love the new packaging---must nice than that for the serum. Hope you change over to this package for everything.

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About the Experts

Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books on skin care and makeup. She is known worldwide as the Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula's Choice. Paula's expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international television including:

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The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products for your skin, using research-based criteria to review beauty products from an honest, balanced perspective. Each member of the team was personally trained by Paula herself.

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