Health & beauty
The Right Skin Care for Every Age
Still using that oil-free cleanser your mom gave you when you were 13? To look flawless and fabulous at every age, it's time to rethink your skin routine. Here, your decade-by-decade anti-aging arsenal.
Your ideal regimen:
Step 1: Women in their 30s need a cleanser that does a little more than the ones you used in your 20s. Dr. Waldorf recommends a formula that "removes makeup and lightly exfoliates using PHAs (gluconolactone and maltobionic acid), and reduces inflammations with a botanical complex including chamomile and aloe. NeoStrata Skin Active Exfoliating Wash, $35, accomplishes both.
Step 2: "Use an eye cream both day and night to hydrate the skin around the eyes and increase suppleness," says Murad. This will help diminish any lines that may be appearing. An eye cream with a broad based SPF works well in the day, and a hydrating eye cream is ideal for the evening.
Step 3: For day, before applying sunscreen, use an antioxidant-rich moisturizer, serum or lotion. "There is some evidence that antioxidants act synergistically with sunblock to help guard against photo damage," says Waldorf. Even better, she says, they may also be able to undo some of the damage that's already been done. If you were using a quality product in your 20s, keep on using it, but if you need an upgrade, Caudalie Vinexpert Firming Serum, $88, contains a potent form of reservatatrol from grape vines (the "magic ingredient" that keeps popping up in current studies), plus peptides and hyaluronic acid to boost moisture.
Step 4: Add a retinoid to your regimen to help improve the overall texture and tone of your skin. The highest-strength retinoids are prescription only, but over-the-counter retinol is a close second. Everyone's skin is different, so the strength you need will vary on an individual basis. Apply retinoids at night (sunlight deactivates retinol, making it worthless), and avoid putting them on your upper eyelids -- retinoids can be too irritating on your delicate eye area.
Step 5: If your skin feels like it needs additional moisture after applying a retinoid, use a basic hydrating cream that doesn't contain additional retinol. Other acids, such as alpha hydroxyl acids, may improve the hydrating effects of a product, but "you want to avoid over treating your skin," says Waldorf.
SEE NEXT PAGE: If you're in your 40s