Retinyl Palmitate (Vitamin A)

Retinyl Palmitate, also known as Vitamin A or Retinol Palmitate, is a synthetic alternative for retinyl acetate, the naturally occurring variant of the compound known as Vitamin A. It is primarily used in topical cosmetics as an antioxidant, and as a synthetic supplement for Vitamin A in low-fat and skim milks, which offsets the loss of nutrients that occurs with the removal of the milk fat.


Mechanically, Retinyl Palmitate functions like most retinoids: it increases the thickness of your skin and enables the retention of more water in the affected areas of your skin, both of which can result in more flexible and durable skin. Skin which is both well-hydrated and durably thick is less likely to crease and fold when you move the muscles underneath it, so you will run a reduced risk of developing wrinkles in your skin.


Side effects from topical use of Retinyl Palmitate are not nearly as serious as those that can occur from ingesting Retinyl Palmitate through daily multivitamins or low-fat skim milk. Ingesting high doses of Retinyl Palmitate can result in Vitamin A Toxicity, which can result in nausea, vomiting, and, in the long run, decay of the barrier tissue that protects your brain from foreign chemicals in your blood stream. But, thankfully, the results of over-applying Retinyl Palmitate topically will only run you the chance of irritation, burning, and, in the worst case scenario, peeling of the skin.


For information on products that contain Retinyl Palmitate, be sure to look at our product comparison chart.