“When choosing a cleanser, stay away from high-foaming cleansers, as they can strip the skin, leaving it tight, dry, and more prone to breakouts. It can even cause lines, wrinkles, and sensitivity to the environment. Instead, one of my most strategic skincare tips is to apply a pre-cleanser prior to cleansing to help thoroughly clean your skin without stripping your skin’s natural oil.” — Candace Noonan, esthetician and director of education at Environ Skin Care
Don’t: Forget to pamper yourself. A gentle facial massage with oils could work wonders. Depending on your skin type, choose oils from mustard, coconut, almond or Kumkadi as they are excellent nourishing agents which help to get glowing skin. Better still – switch on some soothing instrumental music. After 20 minutes, what do you have? Beautiful skin and a relaxed you.
Promising Review: “Not only did I use this on my face. But I’ve also used it to help the acne areas on the backs of my arms. It is a very gentle product and does not have a strong scent. I love how it clears the acne and soothes the red spots that come with it!” —KohlenBlakesMom
There are multiple ways to identify a good product. I reveal my full process in identifying effective anti-aging solutions later in this article. For now, here’s a general rule: Rather than look at the ingredients in the product, look at the research behind the ingredients. Don’t trust a company that doesn’t do its homework, or that won’t show it to you.
Simple alcohols destroy the skin’s barrier, called the acid mantle, which is what keeps your skin’s pH in its happy place (and your skin blemish-free). “A lot of products that are marketed to treat acne do not maintain — or even consider the importance of — the skin’s acid mantle,” explains Natarsha Bimson, a Los Angeles-based aesthetician. “It’s a huge issue.” In one study, even a small, 3 percent alcohol solution applied to skin cells over the course of two days increased cell death by 26 percent — in some acne treatments, like Kate Somerville’s EradiKate, alcohol is one of the first ingredients listed, meaning it’s a largely alcohol-based formula.
Would have given this five stars except, didn’t like the strong fragrance. I’m a bit sensitive and it did kind of cause me a bit of a problem with my skin, but I waited a bit and used it again later. As long as I alternate with other things it seems to be fine. It does have a nice feel on the skin, but it seems to dry my skin near my eyes a bit, but the rest of my skin is nice, smooth and soft. I’m a bit torn cause there are things I like and things I didn’t and I know I can make a handmade lotion that I find a little better for my purpose, but due to all the skin types out there I would definitely say this one is better then others I’ve tried and certainly not bad. It’s a pretty pure based lotion with lots of great ingredients that are good for skin so I have still rate it high.
Don’t: Pop pimples because it can lead to more swelling, redness, and even scarring. Feel a pimple is on its way? Just clean the area with rose water, and place a chilled green tea bag for 10 minutes. Also, if you wear glasses or sunglasses, make sure you clean them frequently to keep oil from clogging the pores around your eyes and nose.
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What’s Going On: Meet papules. No, they’re not things you’d find growing on the grounds of Hogwarts (though they sound like it). These are a type of inflammatory acne and they’re the work of bacteria. “Growth of the bacteria p. acnes on the skin promotes inflammation, causing acne bumps to become red and tender,” says Zeichner.
There are few over-the-counter wrinkle creams that get the kind of praise that Olay Micro-Sculpting Serum (Est. $21 for 1.7 oz.) does. The Olay Regenerist line is well-respected by experts for its effective, beneficial formulas, and the Micro-Sculpting line is no exception. At Good Housekeeping, it earns a Seal of Approval for its ability to hydrate and smooth skin, as well as for its lab-proven anti-aging properties. As with all serums, because it doesn’t have any sun protection factor, it’s best used at night or as a base for moisturizing creams or makeup.
“Despite what you hear all the time, the amount of water you drink daily doesn’t translate into proper skin hydration. It’s vital to hydrate your skin from the outside in with serums, creams, and hydrating mists.” –Dendy Engelman, dermatologist at Manhattan Dermatology & Cosmetic Surgery
This simple guide will help you understand the ingredients that may benefit your skin. Then, if you’re still unsure which skin care products are right for you, ask your dermatologist or consult with a skin aesthetician at your local salon or beauty counter.
Look for one with broad-spectrum (UVA/UVB) protection and SPF 30. Linder recommends a moisturizer with titanium dioxide or zinc oxide. To ensure that you remember to use it, keep the bottle near your toothpaste; apply it all over your face, neck, décolleté, and— whenever they’re exposed—the tops of your ears.
Why She Loves It: Tung says this gentle serum can be used to address the dreaded trifecta of skin issues: fine lines, enlarged pores, and even mild acne.”Retinol combined with antioxidant elements, magnesium and zinc, can improve texture and brighten the appearance while also minimizing pores,” she says.
“Use a skincare product that optimizes the skin barrier and contains anti-inflammatory ingredients. This will also help reduce chronic inflammation, induced by ultraviolet light and airborne pollution. Barrier-damaging skincare and cleansing should be avoided.” — Carl Thornfeldt, MD
However, the skin may not get tons of benefits from anti-aging components of anti-aging products if you use the product in your 20s. With that said, there is no harm in using the product and there is no such thing as a right age.
Dr. Dennis Gross Brightening Solution succeeds where virtually every other wrinkle cream fails. In addition to having retinol and AHAs — bringing exfoliating and regenerative power to your daily routine — Dr. Dennis includes sodium hyaluronate. This built-in moisturizer means you won’t have to add in a separate cream to keep your skin hydrated. The icing on the cake? It comes in an opaque bottle and can be applied without dipping your fingers into an open tub. Out of 112 finalists, the only other product that hit every single check box was La Prairie, a $530 wrinkle cream that made Dr. Dennis’ $88 price point seem like a steal.
This product is Clearasil Ultra Overnight Wash minus the salicylic acid—which gets rinsed down the drain just a few seconds after you apply it to your skin. If you have sensitive skin, you wont have any problems with either Ultra Overnight Wash or Daily Clear Daily Face Wash for Sensitive Skin, but why not buy the latter, since it sells for just US $5.29? Both products will get your skin clean, but neither product will clear up blackheads or pimples.
Is peach not your color? This Clearasil product offers 10% benzoyl peroxide for killing acne bacteria fast, without the familiar peach tint. It’s great for killing acne bacteria fast, but like the tinted version of Clearasil, it can also cause itching, peeling, burning, and stinging if it is applied to unblemished skin. This product also retails for US $6.99 for 1 oz/28 grams.
Use brightening products if you have dull skin. Dull skin is a common side effect of dry or mature skin. If you are looking for more of a glow, try to find products that contain Vitamin C, arbutin, niacinamide, and mulberry extract. These products are more effective when used together, so feel free to mix and match.
My Experience: I made my own little two-step SPF program. I started with the Neogen Day-Light Protection Sun Screen ($30, sephora.com), which I applied after my moisturizer every morning. And I finished everything off with the Amorepacific Color Control Cushion Compact Broad Spectrum SPF 50+ ($60, us.amorepacific.com). This bouncy compact filled with tinted moisturizer not only provided SPF coverage, but it also gave me a glowing complexion without that cakey makeup feel. A cushion compact seemed like the best place to end since it’s a makeup innovation that’s also fresh out of Korean beauty culture.
At-Home Peel: “Dry skin responds well to [gentle] exfoliation,” Rouleau says. “If your skin is dry, it means you have dead skin cell buildup—if you try to hydrate dried skin cells that are expired, it makes no sense.” She says that dry skin has invisible “cracks,” so you should avoid using a facial scrub with sharp edges. “Chemical exfoliants do a better job of dissolving dead skin cells without tearing at your skin,” she says. Try her line’s Triple Berry Smoothing Peel ($87) or AmorePacific’s Treatment Enzyme Peel ($60).
A good skin care regimen for black skin should include use of a daily skin cleanser. Skin cleansers rid the skin of dirt, makeup and oil, leaving it clean and refreshed. A cleanser specifically formulated for black skin is best; you should refrain from using cleansers containing abrasive ingredients such as alcohol, dyes, propylene glycol, lanolin and fragrances. Such ingredients may lead to irritation of the skin or hyperpigmentation. Be sure to cleanse the skin gently.
This is due to the fact that natural ingredients are able to quickly absorb into the skin, and they work from the inside out. Additionally, natural wrinkle creams allow the skin to naturally produce new cells and proteins such as collagen and hyaluronic acid, and in turn, provide natural, long-lasting results.
“You have to get a full-body skin exam by a dermatologist by the time you turn 30. It’s important to have expert eyes take a look at any moles you may have and be able to follow them for changes in the future. Also, the dermatologist can teach you how to do a proper skin check on yourself. This is very important because melanoma, the deadliest type of skin cancer, is almost 100% curable if caught in its earliest stages. If women are armed with information on what to look for, it may save their lives.” — Elizabeth Tanzi, MD
While eye cream isn’t a must yet, experts want you applying sunscreen, hydrators, and actives up to the bony ridge beneath the eyes to protect and treat the delicate area. Make sure at least one product in your regimen contains antioxidants such as vitamin C, ferulic acid, like SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic, or green tea. Worn day, night, or both, they can save skin from the ravaging effects of pollution, stress, UV, and infrared rays — all of which contribute to spots and lines. Many have complexion-brightening powers, too.
If you have both pimples and blackheads, this Clearasil product may be a good choice. It contains both benzoyl peroxide to kill the bacteria in pimples and glycolic acid to break up the “glue” that holds dead skin cells tight around blackheads. The claim made in advertising that it can get rid of pimples in four hours or less may be an overstatement, but you definitely should see changes in 24 hours. Don’t expect full resolution of blemishes in less than a week, however. Like the other popular Clearasil products, it is too strong to use all over your face.
Why She Loves It: This retinol keeps things simple. “It contains both retinol and exfoliating lactic acid, and the pump dispenses just the just the right amount of the stuff,” says Williams. “I love pairing this with SkinBetter Science’s Alto defense serum because it keeps skin care streamlined.”
Rhoda Narins, MD ,Medical board, consultant, and/or investigator for Q-Med, Artes, Bioform, Johnson & Johnson, Ortho-Neutrogena, Colbar, Merz, Medicis, Contura, Mentor, Stiefel, Allergan, Sanofi Aventis Dermik, and Genzyme.
Smoking also damages collagen and elastin — the fibers that give your skin strength and elasticity. In addition, the repetitive facial expressions you make when smoking — such as pursing your lips when inhaling and squinting your eyes to keep out smoke — can contribute to wrinkles.
On the other hand, there are a variety of all-natural wrinkle creams that are reasonably priced, and the beauty of this is that many of these creams last an extra-long time due to the fact that you only need a few drops per day. Take some time to compare prices as well as read user reviews in order to ensure you are getting a quality product at a fair and reasonable price.
Not all serums are applied with the same frequency. “This varies with the ingredients,” Dr. Nazarian says. “I prefer antioxidants in the morning because they give you additional protection from the environment, and most of us don’t use enough sunscreen as is,” Mattioli says. Yet certain ingredients are best when slathered on at night. For example: “Retinols are not sun-stable and will degrade if applied in daytime,” Dr. Nazarian explains. Bottom line: Read the label instructions carefully.
Any nick, scrape, and bug bite can turn into a dark brown spot for women of color. “Hyper-pigmentation is our biggest issue, hands down,” Dr. Ingleton says. She suggests hiding marks by custom-blending concealer: Mix liquid bronzer like Guerlain Terracotta Huile du Voyageur Dry Oil SPF 8 ($59; at saks.com) with your body cream. We like Vaseline Sheer Infusion ($6; at drugstore.com) The bonus: “You get a nice glow on your skin.”
Embracing the process of getting older is a wonderful thing, but it’s also totally fine to see the wrinkles on your face and wish that they were a little less prominent. That’s where these powerful anti-agers come in. We asked dermatologists to share their top anti-aging product picks that they not only suggest to their patients, but also use on themselves.
At a fraction of the price of any of the other over-the-counter wrinkle creams in this category, but just as popular with users, Eucerin Q10 Anti-Wrinkle Sensitive Skin Creme (Est. $10 for 1.7 oz.) is also praised by Begoun for its “well-documented antioxidants in a light yet creamy base formula.” However, she gives it only two stars because of its packaging — it comes in jar form only — downsides that we discuss above. However, users on the Beautypedia site disagree, giving it a perfect 5-star rating. Eucerin products are perennially popular, and if you store and use this properly, it could be a great budget choice for everyday skin care, especially if your skin is very sensitive or very dry. Eucerin Q10 does not contain sunscreen, so is best used under an SPF containing moisturizer.
Wash your face with a natural, organic cleanser. Natural cleansers can be found at a health food store or in many chain drugstores. Look for a cleanser with a glycerin or castille soap base that cleans without stripping the skin’s protective acid mantle. Other ingredients that are soothing and cleansing include essential oils, coconut, aloe vera, chamomile and oats.
The Erno Laszlo Anti-Blemish Beta Wash ($45, sephora.com) has an antiseptic ingredient that helps clear away the bacteria behind your breakouts. There’s also salicylic acid to exfoliate the skin. Consider this the sophisticated version of the acne wash you used as a teen.
CLEAR & GLOWING SKIN » healthy skincare tips
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As people age, the skin naturally loses elasticity and collagen, and this can lead to sagging skin, wrinkles around the eyes and mouth, and dryness. While this is a completely natural process, it can be frustrating to those who take pride in their appearance.
“You unfortunately cannot determine the strength of a product strictly by the percentage of its active ingredients because how well a product works depends on how well its inactive ingredients help it penetrate the skin,” explains Dr. Green. “In other words, a 2 percent benzoyl peroxide may be more effective than another brand’s 5 percent benzoyl peroxide because there are other ingredients helping out.”