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Murad retinol youth renewal eye serum review [I use it on my entire face]

This review of Murad retinol youth renewal eye serum will be an important post for everyone having a hard time tolerating retinol products.

I definitely feel you, because my skin has suffered big time from all the different retinol products I tried. Finally, about 6 months ago, I found a product that I actually could continue to use without any irritations at all!

I will tell you all about this eye serum. Why I love it and why I actually use it all over my face instead of the face serum in the same series. 

I will also explain a bit about retinol and why it is considered to be a gold standard when it comes to anti-aging skincare.

And just to be clear, this is in not a sponsored post. As you may have noticed I only write about a few products. And that is because I only want to share information that truly works for my skin, short term, and long term.

With that said, this is what I will cover in this post: 

The facts about Murad Retinol Youth Renewal Eye Serum

This anti aging eye gel contains the powerful ingredient Retinol, which works both preventative and corrective against signs of aging. But at the same time it’s developed to suit the most sensitive skin types and is also ophthalmologist tested.  

The company highlights that it contains a fast-acting retinoid, a time-released retinol, and a retinol booster. And that this combination will work effectively, without causing irritation. 

The eye gel also contains the ingredient cotton wool grass extract. Which is said to deliver 24 hours of hydration and prevent dryness. 

Another ingredient they highlight is a marine complex. Which is another anti-aging element that they use in the serum. 

My skin with using the only Retinol Serum I can tolerate. Murad Retinol Youth Renewal Eye Serum
After many trials and errors of testing retinol serums, this eye gel from Murad is the only one that my skin can tolerate.

If you’re interested in the full ingredient list, here it is:

Water/Aqua/Eau, Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Imperata Cylindrica Root Extract, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Meadowfoam Delta-Lactone, Retinyl Propionate, Retinol, Swertia Chirata Leaf Extract, Urea, Yeast Amino Acids, Trehalose, Inositol, Taurine, Betaine, Fucus Vesiculosus Extract, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Extract, Macrocystis Pyrifera (Kelp) Extract, Isopropyl Palmitate, Lecithin, PVP, Hexylene Glycol, Capryl Glycol, Punica Granatum Seed Oil, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, PVM/MA Decadiene Crosspolymer, PEG-8, Carbomer, Sodium Bisulfite, Silica, Sodium Hydroxide, Chlorphenesin, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance (Parfum), Titanium Dioxide (CI 7 7891), Synthetic Fluorphlogopite, Red 4 (CI 14700), Yellow 5 (CI 19140)

Besides the retinol, this eye gel has many hydrating ingredients that I like. I also like the fact that it’s free from parabens, and silicones.

Now, when talking about the ingredients, I want to quickly mention the absence of silicones in this serum. Because that is something that distinguishes it from the facial serum in the same series (Murad youth renewal serum).

The face serum has silicones in it that I, unfortunately, do not tolerate. And I will get back to this further down under the section Why I use this eye serum on my entire face.

But let’s talk about the main ingredient first. Retinol. 

Why retinol is a key ingredient in anti-aging

Retinol is part of a group of vitamin-A derivatives called retinoids (which also includes, for example, tretinoin and isotretinoin). It’s the most used and studied group of anti-aging ingredients in skincare. And has proven effects on the ability to reduce fine lines and wrinkles. 

The retinoids work in many ways. For example, they increase cell turnover and production of collagen. They also stimulate the production of new blood vessels in the skin (something that will improve skin color and give a more glowy complexion).

They are also shown to be able to fade age spots and to increase the production of hyaluronic acid (which gives you a more hydrated skin from the inside)

This is the reason why retinoids are considered to be gold standard when it comes to anti-aging skincare.

Worth mentioning though is that improvements take time and it will usually take 3-6 months until you can start seeing a positive change. 

Side effects 

There is a downside to these ingredients. And that is that they usually come with many side effects. Especially when using the prescribed retinoids (such as Retin-A). While the non-prescribed retinoids such as retinol are less irritating. 

It used to be believed that retinol, since it’s not as strong (and therefore less irritating) wouldn’t be as effective. But newer research has shown that retinol and the prescripted retinoids actually do give similar results. 

Now when it comes to side effects, they are in most cases temporary and will disappear as the skin accommodates. Which can take quite a long time, especially with the prescripted products.

But in some rare cases, the side effects will never diminish and/or be so intense that they actually damage your skin (long term). Which is what happened to me (see my post about skin barrier repair if this has happened to you as well).

All the retinol serums and creams that I tried ended up hurting my skin big time. So I finally gave up. Until I found this serum I use today. I’ll explain more in the section below.

Tip: Your hands are usually much more tolerable to retinol than your face. So in case you have a product that your face cannot tolerate, try it on your hands. My post about how to get younger hands explains more and gives you even more tips.

Why I started using Murad retinol youth renewal eye serum

I have used more brands than I can remember. Starting slowly and using all the tips and tricks that are recommended. But nothing worked. My skin either turned into a burning hell, or I would get never ending breakouts.

All this trying and testing caused my skin a lot of damage. And it came to a point where I decided I just had to stop trying and accept the fact that my skin just doesn’t tolerate retinol. So I did. 

Until one day, years later, I stumbled across this eye serum from Murad. I was looking for a new eye serum since I wasn’t too satisfied with any of the ones I had tried so far. 

I liked the ingredients and thought it would be worth trying retinol again as long it was just for the eyes. Because I had never before experienced any problems with my eye area. So I thought I would be safe as long as I kept it around my eyes and no further.

What happened was that I actually loved this serum so much that I couldn’t resist trying it on larger and larger areas of my face. And today, I have been using it regularly, on my entire face and neck, for the last 6 months.

And the best part is that it hasn’t made my skin break out or turn red a single time!

So as you can understand I am thrilled to finally be able to use a retinol product. And I will continue to use it on my entire face for as long as Murad exists.

The reasons why I use Murad retinol youth renewal eye serum on my entire face
Read about the reasons why I use Murad Retinol Youth Renewal Eye Serum on my entire face. And neck too for that matter.

Tip: See my post about hooded eyes and saggy eyelids to learn more about that specific concern. And why an eye cream is not enough to improve droopiness.

Why I use this eye serum on my entire face

It is indeed expensive to use an eye serum on the whole face and neck. So why the heck do I choose to do so? 

Well the answer is simple, but probably surprising. But the reason I cannot use the face serum in the same series (Murad Retinol Youth Renewal Serum) is because I don’t tolerate one of the ingredients. Cyclopentasiloxane. 

The issue with Cyclopentasiloxane

So the big difference between the eye serum and the facial serum in the Murad Retinol Youth Renewal series, is that the facial serum contains lots of silicones. While the eye serum has zero. 

The facial serum has the silicones dimethicone and cyclopentasiloxane as the first two ingredients after water (the higher up the list, the higher percentage of the ingredient). 

I have no problems with smaller amounts of dimethicone (larger amounts is a big no though). But when it comes to Cyclopentasiloxane I have, for some reason, a non-tolerance against it. What it does is that it promotes cystic acne in certain areas of my face. And it took me many years (and even scars) before I found this out.

Today I never touch a product that contains Cyclopentasiloxane, or any other siloxane-silicone for that matter. And no matter how safe the skincare companies claim it to be. The fact is that it ruins my face. 

I know I am probably one of a few that has this intolerance. But I also know that I am not alone, after reading several testimonies from other persons having the same experience. Therefore I find it important to mention. 

If you think you can be having issues with this ingredient too, then to avoid it you have to look carefully at the ingredient lists.

And be aware that Cyclopentasiloxane is cheaper than other silicones, so you will find it in many products.  

The last thing I want to say about this ingredient is that it usually contains trace elements of its brother Cyclotetrasiloxane. Since they are very difficult to differentiate. And Cyclotetrasiloxane is shown to be toxic to human reproduction.

How I use it

As with all retinol products, you have to start slowly in order to minimize the risk of side effects. So I did.

I started every third night for the first week. Then every second night for the following weeks. And after around 6 weeks (I don’t remember exactly) I began using it every night for a few days. And then took a day off. 

Today I use it 6 nights a week. Directly after my gel cleanser from Bioderma and my micellar water from Filorga. I follow up with a super gentle moisturizer from Bioderma (will review that one in my next post).

One night per week I switch to use my astaxanthin- and vitamin C serum from OZ naturals. The same serum I use daytime every day of the week. 

Tip: See my post about retinol vs vitamin C to learn all about how these two ingredients differ.

Now I mentioned earlier that all the other retinol products I have used caused me terrible side effects. No matter how slowly I tried to introduce them to my face. And this one just doesn’t. I cannot say enough how grateful I am for finding it! 

I just wish that Murad, sometime in the future, will remove the Cyclopentasiloxane from their face serum so that I can start using that one on my face instead.

Using an eye serum for the whole face and neck is twice as expensive. Still, I will continue to do so and really wanted to tell you about my experience. In case you are super sensitive to retinol products in general. Or maybe have an intolerance against Cyclopentasiloxane as well without even knowing it.

One tip is to at least use this gel on the top of your lips. To help prevent so-called smokers lines.

Update: After getting pregnant I started to use a retinol alternative called bakuchiol. It has some very promising effects on the skin and is not just safe to use when pregnant, but also suitable for very sensitive skin. See this post to learn more.

Where to buy it

*Please note, this post contains affiliate links, and I may receive a small commission if you purchase through any of those links. It doesn’t cost you any extra and I only recommend products I truly love and use myself. You can read my full disclosure here.  

You can find Murad retinol youth renewal eye serum at Sephora on this link. If you live in Europe you find it at Feelunique by following this link.


  • Retinol and other retinoids are considered to be a gold standard ingredient when it comes to anti aging. They are proven to reduce and prevent fine lines and wrinkles. As well as age spots.
  • Retinol usually comes with many side effects and needs to be introduced slowly into your skin care routine. 
  • Murad Retinol Youth Renewal Eye Serum is developed to suit the most sensitive skin types. 
  • I have personally not been able to use any other retinol serum except for this one. 
  • Unfortunately, I am highly sensitive to the ingredient Cyclopentasiloxane and for that reason, I have to use the eye serum on my entire face. Becuse the eye serum is without it (thank god), while the regular face serum does contain it as a second ingredient. 
  • For anyone as sensitive as I am, I suggest you read the whole post. 

So there you have my review of this wonderful serum!

But please remember. Using retinol, and other good skincare ingredients are only a piece of the puzzle. And I would say that sunscreen, sleep, diet (for example having a high intake of the nutrients I cover in this article), and staying away from smoke, are much more important for your skin in the long run.

If you are new to this blog I suggest you start by reading the 3 most fundamental rules to prevent wrinkles.

With that said, please let me know if you have any questions regarding this post. Have you tried this serum yourself? Do you have any retinol-experiences you want to share or ask about? Let me know in the comments below 🙂

Until next time, love your skin!

This Post Has 26 Comments

  1. Barshan Turno

    Needful content. Keep creating content like this! Tons of love for you

    1. Ann

      Thank you so much Barshan! 🙂

  2. Thank you for this so informative article! I learned a few things! 🙂 By the way, I know the brand Bioderma too (your gel cleanser) and have used several of their products.

    1. Ann

      You’re very welcome Hadassah! And glad to hear that 😀

    1. Ann

      Thank you so much 🙂

      1. Connie

        The Murad retinol eye serum contains isopropyl palmitate. Isn’t it an ingredient that’s comedogenic? What’re your thoughts on it? Btw, I love your blog. I just discovered it and have been binge reading lol!

        1. Ann

          Thank you so much Connie! So happy to hear that :). About isopropyl palmiatate, it should be fine in low concentrations. I am super sensitive to comedogenic ingredients, and at least it works fine for me. 🙂

  3. I have never tried a retinol product but rbis sounds like a really good product. Your skin is glowing!

    1. Ann

      Thank you so much Lynyadia 🙂 Hope you give it a try!

  4. Excellent post. I have been debating purchasing some retinol cream for under my eyes. Thanks for the helpful information!

    1. Ann

      You’re very welcome Alyssa! You will love it! 🙂

  5. As I get older, I realize my skin needs more care than it used to, a simple wash with water and soap(yes I did that for years) is now a no-no.I find that I now need quality skin care products to have the face I want.
    thanks so much for reviewing Murad Retinol, although I have been using some good moisturizers,I feel it`s time I moved on to something better.
    I love that Murad can be applied to the whole face, as sometimes time is limited in the mornings and can`t bring myself to use two different facial products.
    Thanks so much I really appreciate you sharing this.

    1. Ann

      Thank you Roamy! You’re very welcome 🙂

  6. I just started using retinol and unfortunately had to cut back because my skin couldn’t handle it. I might have to check this one out! Thanks for the recommendation!

    1. Ann

      You’re very welcome Anita! That was exactly what happened to me. I hope you give this a try! 🙂

  7. I am very glad I found this post. I too have a hard time with retinols. I’m highly allergic to something in a lot of face creams, and moisturizers, and I have no idea what that ingredient is (my face will swell up and turn red and scaly). And most retinol products that I use irritate my face or are in a product where I’m allergic to the other ingredients. I’m glad you mentioned this product, I will definitely be giving it a try!

    1. Ann

      Hi Carolyn,
      Sounds like you are just as sensitive as I am. So hopefully you will tolerate this serum as I am 🙂 Let me know how it works out!

  8. This sounds great and judging it by your pictures works fabulous! I’m going to check it out – my old face could use a boost!

    1. Ann

      Thank you so much Lisa! 🙂

  9. Shana Seigler

    I absolutely love this brand. I use the blurring effect sunscreen. I adore it and like to use it as a base for my makeup as well.

    1. Ann

      Glad to hear you like the brand ??

  10. My skin is super sensitive too and doesn’t tolerate retinol. Thanks for this post suggesting a possibility!

    1. Ann

      Glad to help! Give it a try and start slowly ?

  11. I have used Retin-A before and liked it, but it was years ago. Too bad about the cystic acne. That’s painful. As always, thanks for the informative post.

    1. Ann

      Thank you Lisa! ?

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