How to Get Your Best Skin

Proper Maintenance


With a few tweaks to your skin care regiment, you can have younger looking skin. It requires only a few minutes a day and the results are well worth the time. Dealing with mature skin can be a challenge. What worked like a dream for your 20 or 30 something skin may no longer be enough. I began to research skin care when I noticed my skin changing in my late 30's. Now well past 40, I know that I need to give care and attention to my skin.

I began reading what I could find from reputable sources and came up with a skin care plan that covered all of the bases. Maintaining healthy skin does not have to be expensive, but maintenance does take a little time each day.


Cleanse

Gone are the carefree days of your teens and twenties when you could fall into bed at 2am and not worry about your skin. Choose a gentle cleanser that will clean your skin without stripping away all of your natural oils and use it faithfully morning and night.

Nourish

Apply a nourishing serum to infuse your skin with potent antioxidants like vitamin E and C. Be sure to choose a serum that contains a stabilized version of vitamin C because it can oxidize quickly and lose potency. Also, the product must have a pH level of less than 3.5 to be efficiently absorbed by the skin ( for details about the efficacy of vitamin C in skin care products, follow the two links provided below). In a study published by the University of Leicester in September 2009, researchers found that vitamin C plays an important role in skin protection and the production of collagen. Considering the documented benefits of vitamin C, I use it topically and take a vitamin C supplement.

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Moisturize and Protect

Choose a moisturizer that contains a broad spectrum sunscreen for day time use. Don't skimp on the sunscreen! Use sunscreen everyday. No exceptions. If you will be out in the sun use extra protection and reapply sunscreen every couple of hours.

Exfolliate

Gently scrub away dead skin cells two to three times a week with an exfoliating scrub. Add a chemical peel that contains alpha-hydroxy acid every couple of weeks. Two common types of alph-hydroxy acid are glycolic acid and lactic acid. Glycolic acid peels can be purchased over the counter or stronger peels can be administered by an aesthitician. Lactic acid can be found....in your refrigerator. We've all heard about Cleopatra's legendary beauty and her infamous sour milk baths. Well, turns out the Egyptian queen might have known a thing or two about beauty. Buttermilk contains lactic acid and can help your skin achieve a radiant glow. Simply pour over skin or make a paste with oatmeal, honey and buttermilk.

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Rejuvenate

A good night cream can make all the difference in your skin's appearance. Choose a cream with retinoids, which are vitamin A derivatives. According to WebMD, retinoids can minimize wrinkles, increase thickness of skin, slow the breakdown of collagen and lighten brown spots. Sign me up!

Prescription strength retinoids are tretinoin and Retin-A. On the WebMS site, Chicago dermatologist Carolyn Jacob states that over the counter products can take from 3-6 months to show results and prescription products can take 6-8 weeks because prescription retinoids are about 100 times more potent than over the counter products. I use a cream that was formulated by a dermatologist from a local "medical day spa". The cream is a mixture of retinol and kojic acid.

Repair

Time to spackle those wrinkles and fine lines. The retinol products can help reduce the appearance of fine lines, but a filler can give instant results for more stubborn creases. Most fillers temporarily plump up skin tissue to reduce the appearance of wrinkles. Make sure your skin tissue is plump to begin with by staying well hydrated.

Fuel Your Body

Yes, it really does matter what you put into your body. So the first rule is: DON'T SMOKE. Period. Do you need reasons why it is bad for your skin? Well, here ya go: 1. Smoking robs your body of oxygen and causes your vessels to constrict. 2. Smoking delays wound healing-or any healing- in your body. 3. Smoking depletes vitamin C from your body. 4. Pucker wrinkles form around the mouth. 5. Smoking increases carbon monoxide levels in your blood. 6. Smokers are more wrinkly than non-smokers. Add yellowed teeth and a persistent stale odor and you have enough reasons to quit.

Your skin needs plenty of vitamins, water and other important nutrients. Put high quality fuel into your body if you want beautiful skin on the outside. You wouldn't dump a quart of mud into your prized sportscar or feed your beautful orchids sludge. You take care of your favorite things so that they will perform well and last. Make sure that you take care of you.

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Comments 2 comments

Mary Schnibben profile image

Mary Schnibben 5 years ago from Woodridge, IL

Great article & good advice!


Tiffany Regan profile image

Tiffany Regan 5 years ago from Colorado Author

Thank you Mary!

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