How to Treat the 4 Most Common Signs of Aging
Have you ever looked at your reflection in the harsh morning light and realized that no matter how much beauty sleep you catch up on, you no longer resemble the fresh-faced teeny-bopper you were many moons ago?
Aging is an inevitable biological process that everyone deals with, and unfortunately, no one (not even Kim Kardashian herself) can completely stop it from happening. If you think of your skin as a shield that protects you from the outside world, then it should come as no surprise that your skin will be the first part of your body that begins to show visible signs of the aging process.
You probably know that there are multiple signs of skin aging and there are thousands of products on the market that claim to be 'anti-aging'. Even though there’s no miracle product that will keep you forever young, there are definitely products that you can incorporate into your skincare routine to fight the most common signs of aging and help your skin look healthier and younger for years longer.
1. Sun DamageWhile there are many factors in your everyday environment that can affect the health of your skin, the primary cause of premature signs of aging is repeated (and unprotected) exposure to the sun’s harmful UV rays. UV-related damage starts to form in your skin within 15 minutes of being out in the sun and accumulates over time. So even though you might think your skin looks “healthier” with a natural tan, you probably won’t notice the damaging effects until they creep up on you later on in life. An accumulation of sun damage in the skin can lead to various signs of premature aging including fine lines, wrinkles, and hyperpigmentation (AKA age spots or sun spots). These dark-coloured spots tend to appear on areas of the skin that are more frequently exposed to the sun, such as the hands, face and neck.
See more: 11 things you didn't know about sunscreen.
1. How to Treat Sun Damage: Vitamin C TreatmentVitamin C is a powerhouse antioxidant that offers multiple benefits to sun-damaged skin. Not only has it been clinically-proven to improve existing signs of sun-damage, but it can also help protect the skin from environmental damage over time. Vitamin C helps reduce pigmentation and improves collagen production in the skin — which means it will be great for brightening stubborn dark spots and smoothing out fine lines and wrinkles.
We recommend a super potent anti-aging serum formulated with a high concentration of pure Vitamin C, plus ferulic acid and Vitamin E for an extra antioxidant boost.
Drunk Elephant C-Firma, $80.
1. How to Treat Sun Damage: Broad Spectrum Sun ProtectionSunscreen is one of the best ways to protect your skin from developing premature signs of aging and can help prevent dark spots from getting even darker. If you want to get the most out of your sunscreen, then make sure you are using the product correctly and that it offers the right type of UV protection. When shopping for sunscreen, be sure to read the label to confirm that it offers both UVA and UVB protection (SPF protection and broad spectrum protection). If the sunscreen only offers UVB protection, then it will be great at preventing sunburn — but not so great at protecting the skin from the UVA rays that lead to premature signs of age.
Clinique offers a fast-absorbing, broad spectrum sunscreen that won’t clog pores or leave behind a white cast; in short, the perfect sunscreen for all skin types.
Clinique SPF 50 Mineral Sunscreen Fluid, $35.
2. Dry, Dehydrated SkinWith age and exposure to environmental aggressors, the skin’s outer protective layer breaks down in structure and gradually loses its ability to retain moisture. Many people find that their skin produces far less oil than it used to when they were younger. If your skin has been flaking or feeling tighter than usual, you may want to start incorporating more hydrating products into their skincare routine. Be sure to ditch any products that contain potentially drying or oil-fighting ingredients such as denatured alcohols, salicylic acid, witch hazel, and/or harsh cleansing agents.
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2. How to Treat Dry Skin: Nourishing OilIncorporating a nourishing facial oil into your routine is a great way to restore suppleness to the skin, especially if your skin hasn’t been producing enough of its own natural oils. Rose hip seed oil is a great hydrating oil for any skin type, is rich in essential fatty acid content and will encourage healthy cell renewal for smoother, clearer, and more radiant-looking skin.
This restorative serum is a lightweight, emollient blend of plant-derived oils that uses rose hip seed oil as its base to encourage a youthful glow.
Rocky Mountain Soap Co. Restorative Face Serum, $29.
2. How to Treat Dry Skin: Moisture Barrier Repair CreamWhen choosing a moisturizer, try to find one that contains ingredients like ceramides, urea, hyaluronic acid or niacinamide — all of which help restore the skin’s protective barrier and prevent against moisture loss.
Cerave Moisturizing Cream is a drugstore classic that is packed with moisture-barrier loving ingredients and is super effective at keeping the skin hydrated all day long without clogging pores.
Cerave Moisturizing Cream, $23.
3. Fine Lines, Wrinkles and Sagging SkinThe skin’s natural processes slow down over time with repeated exposure to environmental factors. Your skin renews itself less frequently and produces less collagen and elastin, which in turn reduces the overall look of elasticity and volume in the skin. If you are beginning to notice textural changes such as fine lines, wrinkles, and sagging skin, there are a few clinically-proven ingredients that you can use to boost your skin’s collagen production and rate of renewal.
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3. How to Treat Fine Lines: Retinol TreatmentVitamin A (also known as retinol) is one of the most extensively researched cosmeceutical ingredients on the market and is a powerful, multi-functional addition to your anti-aging skincare routine. Topical retinol speeds up your skin’s regeneration cycle and encourages collagen synthesis — which means your skin will look smoother, firmer, and brighter after 6-8 weeks of consistent use. Retinol also encourages the unclogging of pores and will help reduce breakouts overtime.
Even though retinol products have earned a bad rep for being irritating during the first few weeks of use, this night cream from Charlotte Tilbury uses an advanced, time-released form of retinol that is non-irritating and makes it much easier for the skin to adjust.
Charlotte Tilbury Magic Night Cream, $165.
3.. How to Treat Fine Lines: Glycolic Acid Exfoliating TreatmentIf you are looking for an exfoliating treatment with anti-aging benefits, then look no further than glycolic acid. Not only does glycolic acid exfoliate dead surface cells for instantly smoother and brighter-looking skin, but it has also been shown to have a collagen-boosting effect to improve signs of age when used over time.
We recommend tihs affordable facial toner that can be easily incorporated into your routine. It contains five percent glycolic acid that gently exfoliates the skin for a fresh, radiant glow.
Pixi Glow Tonic, $20.
4. Expression LinesExpression lines (or dynamic lines) are wrinkles caused by recurring muscle movement on the forehead, around the eyes and mouth. For certain individuals, these lines can appear sooner than later, depending on how frequently you exercise those particular facial muscles. In layman’s terms, the more you smile/laugh/cry/frown, the more likely you are to develop expression lines earlier on in life.
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4. How to Treat Expression Lines: BotoxUnfortunately, there aren’t many well-researched, topical skincare products that will cure extremely deep-set expression lines. On the other hand, if you are extremely committed to getting rid of stubborn expression lines, then your best option would be investing in a tried-and-true, FDA-approved treatment like Botox. With that being said, crow’s feet and smile lines are major indicators of a life well-lived — so embracing them can be just as empowering as treating them.