While good skin care practices can keep some of the more obvious signs of aging at bay, as we move into our 40s and 50s, certain physiological changes are inevitable. Besides extrinsic elements such as pollution and sun exposure, intrinsic factors like the decline of various hormones and growth factors contribute to skin dryness, thinning and dullness.
As we age, our skin’s ability to renew and repair itself slows down, as does the body’s production of collagen and elastin. The outer layer of the epidermis tends to thicken and dry, leading to a dull or sallow complexion. The dermis, or middle layer, responsible for the skin’s resilience and firmness, weakens and thins. The result is sagging, loss of resiliency (think of how a young child’s skin “springs” back into place) and an accelerated development of fine lines and wrinkles.
While we can’t do anything to stop the aging process, we can certainly take steps to minimize the tell-tale signs. Most estheticians recommend modifying your skin care regimen as you age to accommodate changes and deal with new concerns. However, the basics are always called for: cleanse, moisturize and protect.
Once we stop producing collagen and elastin (sometime in the 30s), it’s a good idea to rethink the type of facial cleanser we use. A glycolic acid product such as DDF Glycolic 5% Exfoliating Wash will not only sweep away dirt, debris and makeup, it will also remove dead cells and smooth the texture of your skin, reducing the appearance of fine lines. If you can’t tolerate or don’t want to use a glycolic, a hydrating cleanser such as Pevonia Power Repair Hydrating Cleanser is gentle yet will help to preserve your skin’s hydrolipidic film, with a combination of marine collagen and marine elastin.
Changing your moisturizer is the most important consideration in your new regimen. There are many products specifically designed to fend off free radicals and protect connective tissue, as well as encourage its growth. To fight loss of collagen and elastin, Relastin Skin Revitalizer works with your skin’s own cells to “kick start” the formation of elastin and help diminish fine lines and wrinkles. BORBA Age Defying Elastin Fiber Discovery Kit enhances elastin production to promote firm and toned skin.
The final step in any regimen is sun protection, regardless of the time of year, climate or your skin type. The question of physical vs. chemical is a matter of personal preference, but a sunscreen such as NIA24 Sun Damage Prevention Mineral Sunscreen is formulated to prevent sun damage by strengthening the skin barrier.
With a little research and experimentation, you can create a new skin care regimen that will help you put your best face forward.