Women's Concepts Logo

Meet The Most Potent (And Stable) Retinol Serum: Exponent Time Rewind Retinol System

Own courtesy / Ana Vasilescu
We may include products - handpicked by our editors - we find useful for our readers. When you buy through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission — view our product review process and sources of information.

If you asked me what my skincare staple would be, I’d proclaim my love for retinol before you’d even finished asking the question. And most likely, I’m not alone. As one of the most heavily researched skincare actives, retinol is the pillar in most routines since it tackles a wide array of concerns, from fine lines and wrinkles to acne, hyperpigmentation, and dullness. But, as good as it is, retinol is prone to oxidation, and it can degrade to up to 80% after six months at 25°C and up to 100% at 40°C and even faster when exposed to light. That’s why everyone advises us to keep our serums in cold and dark places, but guess what? I’m done with the trips to the fridge since I’ve got my Exponent Time Rewind Retinol System. 

For a bit of context, Exponent is an innovative skincare brand that takes fresh skincare to the next level delivering actives in their peak potency for enhanced benefits from every dose. Liz Whitman, the founder of Exponent, identified the degradation and efficacy issue of traditional skincare products every time they’re exposed to the daily environment, so she landed on powderized actives to protect them against degradation.

“Anti-aging skin-care products, ironically, have an aging problem.” Liz Whitman, Founder of Exponent

About Exponent Retinol System

This retinol never sees the light of day, so it delivers peak effectiveness in every dose. Yep, you read that right — Exponent uses a patented Self-Activator System that allows for precise dispensing of retinol powder which mixes with their Quadruple Hyaluronic Acid Hydrator to create a lightweight gel-cream serum.

Exponent Retinol Serum
You have to push and twist the lid and mix for 10 seconds until you get a lightweight serum.

The system packs 0.25% retinol in every dose to fight aging signs, pimples, and uneven tone, plus allantoinvitamin E, and shea butter to soothe and moisturize without clogging the pores. When the powder mixes with the Hydrator — filled with a few humectants, including four molecular weights of hyaluronic acid — a potent retinol serum comes out.

My experience with Exponent Time Rewind Retinol System

I love how simple it is to mix my fresh retinol serum at night. And above everything, I’m fond of the final texture of Exponent Time Rewind Retinol Serum, which, IMO, strikes the perfect balance between a rich serum and a lightweight moisturizer. The elixir is dense and moisturizing; it melts quickly into the skin, dries to the touch within minutes, and leaves zero residues behind. Also, I never got any reaction from Exponent Time Rewind Retinol, nor it stung my skin upon application, which is a huge win. Finally, the lavender scent (which comes from essential lavender oil) feels calming, which makes me look forward to using it.

Retinol System Exponent

The value

The Exponent Starter Kit costs $166 and includes the Self-Activator System, the Hydrator (60 doses), and the Retinol Powder (45 doses). Because the Self-Activator System is designed to be used again and again, only the Retinol Powder ($88) and the Hydrator ($68) should be refilled.

The takeaway

Because this serum is housed in a system that doesn’t allow actives to degrade and delivers prime benefits with every dose, it is a staple in my routine as it targets pretty much all of my concerns: fine lines, dark spots, and clogged pores. Time Rewind Retinol Serum is both preventative and corrective, moisturizing, gentle, and, most importantly, active. I rigorously use it in my nighttime routine, and in the morning, I swap it for Exponent Brightening Vitamin C Serum for an active dose of protection.

Who wrote this?
Picture of Ana Vasilescu
Ana Vasilescu
Ana Vasilescu is the founder of Women's Concepts and a certified skincare consultant. She has over five years of experience working in the beauty editorial industry and over a decade as an acne sufferer. With a background in dermatological research, Ana brings a wealth of expertise to a diverse range of topics, from buzzy ingredients to anti-aging and acne advice. She holds a BA in Sociology and Political Sciences. Find her on LinkedIn or Instagram.
Subscribe to our newsletter
Subscribe to our newsletter to get access to exclusive content, offers, and products.
Was this article helpful?
Awesome! Would you like to share it?
That's too bad. Thank you for your feedback!
Women's Concepts Logo
Join Us