What do we know about ageing skin?
The three major signs of ageing skin are:
Wrinkles, facial volume changes and changes in the skin surface. Signs such as visible sun damage, irregular pigmentation, loss of elasticity with crinkling of the skin and enlarged pores. Yes, that's right.....enlarging pores can be a sign of ageing skin. This is because the levels of collagen and elastin in the skin decline with age. Our skin therefore becomes less firm and elastic. The pores start to 'relax' and slacken.
As you grow and mature, so does your skin. It will undergo a plethora of changes. Daily life is full of destructive elements that exacerbate skin ageing, such as: sun, pollution, lack of sleep, poor diet and stress. This is why the skin matrix begins to lose its structure and integrity. There is no skincare routine that will reverse the ageing process, however there are tools and products that we can use to harness the power of ageing and keep our complexion healthy and radiant.
It's far easier to take preventative measures early on than undergo corrective procedures later. Prevention rather than cure! Having regular facials, ideally dermatological grade, will help and ensuring you apply antioxidant Vitamin C serum followed by SPF50 containing broad spectrum UVA and UVB protection daily, even on cloudy days.
There are various at home treatments you can do to prevent the signs of ageing skin.
As we age our cell turnover slows. To help strengthen your skin and combat the visible effects of ageing, use Retinol, Hyaluronic Acid and Vitamin C. Retinol is one of the easiest ways to boost glow, help clear up breakouts, minimise the appearance of sun damage and maintain a beautiful complexion.
A skin perfecting ingredient. Be sure to select a Retinol cream that is suitable for your skin. The following is a good guide to OTC products:
- Choose gentler products for dryer skin such as Avene's Physiolift Night Balm.
- Medium strength for combination and uncomplicated skin such as Medik8's R-Retinoate.
- Stronger products for oily skin such as Skinceuticals Retinol 0.3%-0.5%. Skinceuticals also have a high strength 1% option.
Hyaluronic Acid is a fantastic way to add hydration to the skin and should be used morning and evening. Hyaluronic Acid helps the skin hold moisture which is extremely important to keep skin as plump as possible. We want to feed the skin with as much hydration as possible as we start to age.
Brightening treatments using antioxidant rich Vitamin C serums can also work in your favour to compensate for the lack of moisture and improve overall dullness. Apply Vitamin C serum in the morning under your SPF. It's a true multitasker and a must have ingredient for every skin. It is a great antioxidant and should be used by everyone at all ages. It stimulates collagen production and helps protect our skin from sun and pollution damage.
Microneedling is a fantastic way to give the skin a nudge to remind it to keep making new collagen. Two to three times per week treat your skin with a microneedling device to create micro-channels in the skin, followed by Hyaluronic Acid or Retinol. This treatment will lead to firmer, more hydrated, 'bouncy' skin with a more refined appearance. Applying Skincare products after microneedling will amplify absorption by up to 300% and will penetrate into the deep layers of the skin.
Always use an eye cream and I highly recommend NeoStrata Skin Active Intensive Eye Therapy. It helps to build and plump the layers of the skin around your eyes, helping address crow's feet and puffiness.
Use a broad spectrum SPF30/50. This should be applied daily even in the winter. There are some lovely products now available that are perfect to protect and moisturise the skin eg LaRoche-Posay or Heliocare. With these products you shouldn't need to apply a further moisturiser on top unless your skin still feels dry.
I read this quote recently which really resonated with me:
'In your 20's, nature determines how you look. From your 30's onwards, it's up to you!'