Remember those lovely round cheeks you used to have, and how you used to wish they’d morph overnight into cheekbones so sleek and sharp you could slice
an apple on them? Remember how you’d do anything to look older?
Well, now that you are older, you might be wishing for those round cheeks again. That’s what normal, everyday and inevitable aging, with its loss of skin resilience and elasticity, does to a
You can deal with your aging skin in
two ways. You can panic, raid your child’s college fund and run to the nearest
cosmetic dermatologist. Or, like most moms, you can relax, realize
that much of how you’re going to age is genetically determined and therefore
out of your control; then, follow these quick and easy steps to ensure you are
taking maximum care of your skin with minimal expense, pain and worry.
Never, ever leave the house without
sunscreen on, no matter what your skin tone is. Photo-aging from the sun is the
No. 1 preventable cause of wrinkles and skin damage—and the easiest to
There are two kinds of ultraviolet
radiation shining down on us: UVA, the aging rays that penetrate into the
deepest levels of the epidermis where they damage your DNA; and UVB, which are
the rays that give you tans and burns (SPF refers only to UVB protection).
Make sure your sunscreen is
broad-spectrum, which protects against UVA and UVB rays, and always slather it
on. Also, bear in mind that it takes
up to 20 minutes for a sunscreen to activate, so get in the habit of applying
it at least that long before you leave the house.
You know how the dry air of homes and
offices as well as the polluted air outside suck up all that dewiness from your
skin. Factor in the lower production of skin
oils as you age—bye-bye zits, hello flaky patches!—and you need to exchange the
products that were great when your skin was oilier for more emollient, richer
creams. A moisturizer can’t prevent wrinkles, unfortunately, but it can add a
barrier layer of hydration that makes your skin feel and look better.
Don't Over-Cleanse Your Skin
Salma Hayek has glorious skin for a woman of 46 and a
successful skincare line called Nuance. In recent interviews in the UK
promoting her film Savages, she
explained why: “Don't wash it in the morning, at all, never. Because at night
your skin is rebuilding some of the oils that you need to keep your skin young,
and it balances the PH.” She’s right. Overzealous cleansing and toning strips
off those precious oils. Try using a device like Clarisonic, which gently gets
the grime off, or go for a cleansing oil that gets you clean while adding
Remember to Exfoliate
what’s on the top layer of your skin? Dead skin cells. Skin cells have a short
lifespan and are continuously replenishing themselves, but the turnover process
slows down as you age. Enter the microdermabrasion cream, which sloughs off the
old cells and gets rid of the dullness. Using an exfoliant regularly—not necessarily
every day—also allows for better absorption of any hydrating product you’ll
Keep From Using too Many Products
don’t need to use a lot. Plus, going through a complicated skincare routine takes
up too much of your precious time you’d rather be spending with your kids! All
you really need is a simple cleanser, a high SPF sunscreen, a good moisturizer,
a semi-regular exfoliant and a serum if your skin is very dry. That’s it.
hard enough to decipher a food label, and beauty products push the limit of
consumer understanding. This is one of the reasons to
use organic beauty products—they tend to have recognizable ingredients,
instead of hard-to-pronounce chemicals. One new line is made by Olie Biologique;
its Huile Moderne and Huile Radicale are loaded with yummy-smelling oils like
camellia, evening primrose, and argan to plump up and quench dry skin.
Manage the Stress in Your Life
You see the result every time you
look in the mirror after your darling baby is up howling all night! The
better you can manage the daily stressors that life throws at you, and the
deeper you sleep, the more your skin will thank you.
Disregard the Hype
Taking a walk through Sephora is an
exercise in sensory overload. Every product looks and seems so wonderful, and
many of them are. But beauty companies know that women looking for hope in a
jar are vulnerable to exaggerated or bogus claims (for example, an
over-the-counter beauty product is not a drug, so it can never contain ingredients
that can “penetrate” down to the deepest skin layers and into cells where the real
damage/healing takes place; only prescription drugs can do that). The companies also know that many can be easily
seduced by the sumptuous packaging of a product that is not much different than a drugstore brand that is far less expensive.
Be a smart consumer. Find a product
that works for your budget and your skin. Even if your BFF swears by
one cream, it might not have the same effect on you!