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The Ordinary.

The Ordinary Retinol 0.5% in Squalane

The Ordinary Retinol 0.5% in Squalane

Regular price $13.00 USD
Regular price $15.00 USD Sale price $13.00 USD
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Retinol 0.5% in Squalane offers a water-free solution containing 0.5% retinol—an ingredient that improves the appearance of fine and dynamic lines that arise from a loss of collagen and elastin, while evening skin texture and tone. What’s more, this intermediate formula is supported with squalane, a moisturizing agent naturally found in your skin that enhances surface-level hydration and helps combat the dryness that can be associated with retinol use.

The Ordinary Tip: Start with Retinol 0.2% in Squalane and slowly work your way up to Retinol 0.5% in Squalane and Retinol 1% in Squalane. That said, if you are prone to sensitivity, you may prefer to use newer retinoid technologies, such as those found in our Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion.

Note: Once opened, this formula should be refrigerated and used within a three-month period.

Caution: Retinoids can make the skin more sensitive to UV radiation. Sun protection is particularly important when using retinoids. This product must not be used in conjunction with other retinoids including retinol or retinoic acid. This product is not a treatment for acne.

Note: When pregnant or breastfeeding, it is recommended to avoid any skincare products containing retinoids such as formulations with Granactive Retinoid or Retinol.



This water-free solution contains 0.2% pure Retinol, an ingredient that can reduce the appearances of fine lines, of photo damage and of general skin aging. While Retinol has been studied extensively, it is irritating to the skin and newer technologies exist that mimic the visible effects of Retinol without causing skin irritation. For this reason, we generally recommend using Granactive Retinoid 2% or Granactive Retinoid 5% instead of this formula.

The Ordinary’s portfolio of retinoids includes the following formulations:

Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion (Moderate Strength, No Irritation)
Granactive Retinoid 2% in Squalane (Moderate Strength, No Irritation)
Granactive Retinoid 5% in Squalane (High Strength, No to Low Irritation)
Retinol 0.2% in Squalane (Low Strength, Moderate Irritation)
Retinol 0.5% in Squalane (Moderate Strength, High Irritation)
Retinol 1% in Squalane (High Strength, Very High Irritation)

Caution: Retinol can cause significant irritation, redness and peeling, especially around the eyes and mouth, in the early stages of treatment while skin builds tolerance. If you have not used high-strength retinol formulas in the past, we strongly recommend that you start your retinol regimen with our Retinol 0.2% in Squalane and adjust to higher strengths of Retinol 0.5% in Squalane and Retinol 1% in Squalane as your skin builds tolerance. You will achieve the same end results without the unpleasant redness and peeling along the way.

Note: Water can affect the stability of retinol. Additionally, plant oils in retinol formulations can trigger lipid peroxidation and can impair retinol integrity. This formula does not contain water, silicones, plant oils or alcohol.

EU Shipping Note: We are able to ship this product within the European Union. However, please note that the Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety has published an opinion on April 20, 2016 suggesting that Retinol content of cosmetics should be limited to 0.3% as summarized on page 67 of the publication listed below. While this opinion has not yet affected regulatory restrictions, it may in the near future and such restriction would apply to all products sold within the EU containing Retinol. We recommend considering Granactive Retinoid 2% or 5% from The Ordinary if you are concerned about use of Retinol products.

Caution: Retinoids can make the skin more sensitive to UV radiation. Sun protection is particularly important when using retinoids. This product must not be used in conjunction with other retinoids including retinol or retinoic acid. This product is not a treatment for acne. Acne-prone skin may experience a temporary increase in acne during the first few weeks of using any form of retinoid including those used in this formulation.

Note: When pregnant or breastfeeding, it is recommended to avoid any skincare products containing retinoids such as formulations with Granactive Retinoid or Retinol.
Product Directions
  • Apply a few drops to the face in the evening. 
  • Do not use with other retinoid products. 
  • Use sun protection during the day. 
  • Caution: Retinol can cause irritation, redness, and peeling, especially around the eyes and mouth, in the early stages of use while skin builds tolerance. 
  • Refrigerate after opening. 
  • If irritation occurs, rinse off, cease use, and consult a physician. 
  • Use only as directed on unbroken skin. 
  • Patch testing prior to use is advised.
  • Keep out of reach of children.
    Squalane, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Retinol, Solanum Lycopersicum (Tomato) Fruit Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Hydroxymethoxyphenyl Decanone, Bht.
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