Whenever I happen to mention that I work in the beauty industry I am often asked for my favorite tips and tricks on eye makeup, what the “best” products are, and suggestions for a good moisturizer. One of the questions I get asked very often is “how do I stay looking young?” When it comes to beauty, most women want to know what to do stay fabulous. I decided to address this topic in a series of posts that speaks to women in their twenties and thirties ranging from preventing to correcting visible signs of aging.
Anti-aging is a broad term. We hear it all the time in commercials and read it magazines. I like to think of anti-aging as a spectrum. A person may fall on the prevention side of the spectrum, meaning no pronounced lines, wrinkles, or sun damage. The other end of the spectrum is the point of repair and restoration on the spectrum. The repair side is where visible lines and wrinkles, sun damage, and even sagging are the main concerns. The middle of the spectrum is the point where you may see some visible signs of aging. Let us begin with some key steps in maintaining that gorgeous face.
1. Wear SPF everyday!
I must begin by speaking to the importance of wearing a sun protection product every single day. Sunscreen should be worn on sunny days, cloudy days, rainy days, and even in the winter. The sun is the main cause of all of the concerns we are trying to prevent, such as lines, wrinkles, sagging, and uneven skin tone. If your makeup has sunscreen that’s a good start, but I always recommend my clients wear a separate moisturizer with sunscreen because if you have days when you don’t wear makeup or don’t apply it evenly then you lose out on the benefits. SPF only works if you use it everyday and apply evenly. At the minimum your daily product should have an SPF 15 to SPF 30.
2. Retinol is your new best friend!
I love Vitamin A. I love Vitamin A so much I will probably do a separate post just on my favorite Vitamin A based treatments. Products that contain Vitamin A, also known as Retinoic Acid, are commonly referred to as Retinols. This fantastic ingredient is a multi-tasking power house that addresses sun damage (aka hyper pigmentation), acne, lines and wrinkles, and pores. It helps to increase your cell turnover so new fresh skin can come to the surface, and it helps your skin boost its collagen production. Essentially, it’s like jumper cables for your skin, so no matter where you are on the anti-aging spectrum you will benefit from this ingredient. Vitamin A products do a wonderful job of exfoliating so in order to protect your investment please refer back to point number one in this post.
3. Diet and Lifestyle!
So now that we are taking care of the outside, it’s time to talk about the inside. Your skin is the largest organ in your body, and it needs a lot of care in order to protect and repair itself. When my customers casually mention they are smokers I ask them if they realize that their skin cannot breath. I’m not going to lecture anyone on the dangers of smoking but any activity that breaks down major organs, constricts blood vessels, and pour toxins into the body is not going to prevent wrinkles. Keep in mind that your skin reveals what’s going on in your life. If you are feeling stressed, sleep deprived, smoking cigarettes, or living on diet coke and pizza, your skin is not getting what it needs to function at its optimal level. Your skin will love you more if you stop smoking, drink lots of water, try to get a few extra hours of sleep whenever possible, and incorporate healthy foods like yogurt, fruit, and leafy veggies.
4. The Eyes, Neck, and Hands
There are three key places that a woman’s age shows: the eyes, the hands, and the neck. The skin around these areas is very is extremely thin so it breaks down more quickly than the rest of your skin. These areas also need lots of hydration and nourishment. Eye cream treats and helps your makeup last longer during the day and at night it helps your skin repair itself. If you are currently using a serum for your face remember to apply it to your neck as well, and any hand cream that has SPF should be in your purse. When you are applying your SPF (which I’m sure you are going to do everyday:) be sure to apply from your collarbone to your hairline for complete protection.
These are just some basic tips to help you get started. In Part II of this series I will share some of my favorite product recommendations to address lines and sun damage.