Your skin is destined for a whole slew of changes during your lifetime. But rather than throw your hands in the air and ignore the goings on at a cellular level, if you know what to expect as the years go by, you can easily navigate the changes no matter your age. With the overwhelming plethora of skincare products and treatments on offer, we spoke to Angela Frazer from Prescription Skin Care to assist us in compiling a concise guide to help you target exactly how to care for your skin in your 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s and beyond. You can thank us later.
In Your 20’s
Ah the 20s … skin heaven. Once the hormones from your teenage years start to level out, breakouts become a thing of the past, leaving you with a visage that is clear, virtually untouched by enlarged pores, and as taut as a tightrope between two skyscrapers.
Help it stay this way for as long as possible and stave off signs of aging by using a nonirritating cleanser like Aspect Dr Mild Clean Facial Cleanser and an oil-free light moisturiser like Aspect Dr Resveratrol Moisturising Cream. Exfoliate gently with a product like A Solution-Vitamin A and Triple AHA Serum.
You’d also be wise to consider skin peels a couple of times a year to reduce breakout causing sebum or excess oils brought on by monthly hormonal fluctuations. Most importantly, never leave the house without some form of sun protection. Most of what we think is caused by aging is in fact caused by sun exposure.
Furthermore, some studies show that wearing sunscreen can give your skin the time to heal the damage that has already been done. For maximum protection, apply a teaspoon of broad spectrum zinc based sunblock on your face daily (we’re partial to the EltaMD Facial sunblock), 20 minutes before leaving the house.
Steer clear of spending time outdoors during the blazing hours between 10am and 4pm. For those bearing the acne scars of their younger days, your mid 20s is prime time for dermastamping – a procedure that breaks down scar tissues to reduce the appearance of pink acne scars
In Your 30’s
Evidently, looking good in your 30s will require more effort than it did in your 20s. A virtually nonexistent skincare regime will no longer do as you’ll now be faced with the first signs of fatigued, dull looking skin (due in part to sun exposure) and fine lines, caused by a natural slowing down of collagen production. Add stress and hormonal factors to the mix and the skin under the eyes will start to thin forming puffy, dark circles that give away your late night game.
To stop these changes in their tracks, replace your basic routine with a medical grade cleanser, toner and moisturiser that targets your skin’s needs, and welcome the addition of serums and eye creams that contain retinol, peptides, niacinamide, and alpha hydroxy acids for a serious boost. Sunscreen is still a must, but hydration is especially crucial since dry skin is the underlying culprit for a multitude of skin concerns.
To help stimulate collagen production, consider IPL laser treatment. And to pre-empt facial deflation and smooth fine lines before they become permanent while gently restoring volume to the cheeks, this is as good a time as any to start using dermal fillers and Botox.
In Your 40’s
Fine lines tend to deepen into & beyond full-fledged wrinkles in your 40s. Photo damage becomes increasingly pronounced, taking the form of dark age spots and hyper pigmentation.
While you most likely possess an effective skincare routine, the hormonal experiences that occur in this decade create noticeable changes in the skin. A decline in oestrogen affects the function of key cells in the skin, such as fibroblasts (in charge of producing collagen, elastin, and keratinocytes that protect the skin) and melanocytes (responsible for keeping skin firm, even toned and smooth), causing lines to appear around the eyes, between the brows, on the forehead, and around the mouth.
To combat the brown spots that start to occur in your mid 40s, as well as the loss in skin tone, dermatologists often recommend IPL laser treatment. To see changes in your skin quickly, consider a chemical peel or laser genesis that removes the top layer of skin cells to even out skin tone and smooth lines.
Alternatively, dermarolling tricks the skin into thinking it has been wounded, thus initiating a natural healing process that aids in tissue regeneration. To step up your efforts at home, invest in multitasking treatments that combine several proven ingredients for best results.
In Your 50’s & Beyond
Alas, from here on, the ageing process kicks into high gear. Menopause, coupled with a steady decline in oestrogen, causes collagen production to drop significantly so skin becomes drier and more sensitive while a loss of fullness (loose skin and sagging) will likely become more noticeable.
While your skincare regimen is unlikely to change from this decade onwards, you’ll want to load up on products that are designed to stimulate the skin’s own repair process like SkinMedica’s TNS Essential Serum.
If you’re growing tired of being asked if you smoke thanks to the lines that have formed around your mouth, try a subtle lip border treatment that not only softens wrinkles, but also prevents lipstick from bleeding into the lip line. And for those thinking that they’ve left it too late, Botox brings hope for etched, permanent lines, even if they’ve been untouched for years.
Subtlety is the key to looking ‘rested’ rather than augmented, and in the hands of the experts at Prescription Skin Care, strategic placement of the 30s right filler can do just that
An interview with Angela Frazer, by Denizen magazine