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Top 5 anti-aging products available at your drugstore or online.

Updated on December 23, 2012

Improve the skin you have to get the life you want.

Through products you can purchase online or from your local drugstore, you can radically change the appearance of your skin from lackluster to modelesque. Forget plastic surgery or useless spa procedures such as facials and ineffective "peels" that waste your time and money. Using this regimen, you can improve your skin YOURSELF without breaking the bank and without parting with a lot of cash. By using my suggested top 5 anti-aging products available at your local drugstore or online, you will be able to turn back the clock in under a year to look years younger.

Please be aware that your results will not happen immediately. You will need to persist through some initial redness and flaking to get the skin you want.

Your face is your calling card, so it's important to present yourself in the best possible light. Society is, sadly, very shallow and your thoughts and ideas may not be taken as seriously unless your skin looks good. The University of Houston and Rice University collaborated on research to determine whether or not things such as blemishes and other skin conditions determined how well people did in interviews. Unsurprisingly, people with poor skin who were interviewing for job positions did not do well. Those interviewing did not remember as much about the applicant as other people they had interviewed. Skin is so important, so let's get started.

I am not a doctor so it is your responsibility to consult with medical professions prior to starting this skin care regimen.

The importance of Tretinoin in any anti-aging regimen

Renova, Retin-A, Retin-A Micro are all names for Tretinoin.

You may have heard about Retin-A, but because the patent for Retin-A expired years ago it is not advertised in magazines like other pharmaceutical beauty aids such as Latisse or Botox. However, Retin-A is still very much used by men and women "in the know" and who realize that simply using this product produces real results for very little cash.

For those that don't know, tretinoin exfoliates your skin at a more rapid rate, thus allowing beautiful new skin to show. It penetrates deep into your pores and over time will build new collagen to help keep your face nice and plump. Lines and wrinkles will completely disappear, as well as acne scars. Most models and celebrities use tretinoin, which gives their face that flawless look that looks great on HD cameras. You can spot the celebrities that use tretinoin and those that don't.

Tretinoin is available only by prescription in the United States, but you can try going to your local CVS MinuteClinic or similar clinic and request a prescription of tretinoin for anti-aging purposes. If you have insurance, your co-pay can be as little as $10. Just ask your prescribing nurse at MinuteClinic to write a prescription for as many refills as possible and for the biggest tube possible. Ask for generic to keep prices low.

Start using tretinoin VERY gradually. Only use a pea sized amount every night after cleansing your face. The less, the better. When you start, only use tretinoin once every three nights. Then after two weeks, use it once every two nights. Your skin may peel and turn red if you use it more than that. All skin reacts differently to tretinoin.

You must ALWAYS use a high UVB/UVA sunscreen when you use tretinoin. Failure to do so will negate the benefits of tretinoin.

If you are broke and cannot afford to see a doctor, you can order tretinoin from inhousepharmacy.biz (which I have used before - http://www.inhousepharmacy.biz/p-432-retino-a-005-... They delivered quickly and it was a good product. There's another online pharmacy but I forget its name offhand, but when I tried to order there were all sorts of problems with credit cards and it was more trouble than it was worth.

If you do NOT want to use tretinoin, an alternative is a retinol product. I used Roberts Research Laboratories Vitamin A Retinol Wrinkle Gel for many months before switching to tretinoin. I feel as though it "prepped" my skin for my transition to tretinoin.

Alpha Hydroxy Acid - You can find this product for $6 or $75 - read this module to find the cheapest source of Alpha Hydroxy Acid.

Alpha hydroxy acid works similarly to Retin-A. It is used in a liquid form to slowly erase fine lines and wrinkles and turns over your skin cells to reveal the newest and freshest batch of skin your body has produced. Using alpha hydroxy acid and Retin-A at the same time may not be desirable as it may cause too much irritation to the skin. Thus, you can use your alpha hydroxy acid in the morning under a strong sunscreen in order to continue rejuvenating your face while you're at work, school or running errands.

Overtime, your fine lines and wrinkles will disappear and you will be left with dewy, youthful skin. I've posted reviews below where people have been using Alpha Hydroxy Acid products for many years with great results.

Two inexpensive alpha hydroxy acid products I recommend are very inexpensive but very effective:

1) Walgreen's store brand called "Studio 35 Beauty Alpha Hydroxy Face Cream 31." This stuff is dirt cheap coming in at around $6, but many of my friends have been able to find it on discount. I believe this Alpha Hydroxy cream has approximately 6-8% alpha hydroxy acid in it. It is available online at http://www.walgreens.com/store/c/studio-35-beauty-... This Studio 35 product was originally marketed simply as Walgreen's in-house brand and for whatever reason they decided to change rebrand it under the Studio 35 line. You can read the amazing reviews of the previous version to see how good it is: http://reviews.walgreens.com/2001/prod5822041/alph...

2) Alpha Hydrox AHA Souffle 12 percent Glycolic AHA: At $16 on Amazon, this stuff has a slightly higher content of Alpha Hydroxy Acid at 12 percent. This has a slight chemical smell, but I don't mind it at all because I get quite fatigued by artificial fragrances being added to everything and would just prefer the neutral slightly chemical smell. You can find this stuff on deep discount regularly at TJ Maxx, Ross or Marshall's. However, their website almost always features incredible deals. Right now, there is a buy one get one deal with FREE shipping. Go to http://www.neotericcosmetics.com/alpha-hydrox/prod... to order.

Hydroquinone

I just started using this, but have read many reports that used in combination at night with Retin-A or another tretinoin product at night results in beautiful, unblotchy skin with eliminated hyperpigmentation. The Retin-A/Hydroquinone combo is used in the highly venerated Obagi system. However, I am unable to afford that and thus am substituting Nadinola as my source of hydroquinone.

There is some controversy over the use of hydroquinone. Some manufacturers believe that it is responsible for turning skin black or blue and thickening skin. However, I have very light skin and am using only 3% and do not plan on using it indefinitely. In some communities where skin bleaching takes place, hydroquinone is used at very, very high percentages (20-30 percent) and used all over the body. I am only using it on my facial area. Percentages over 2 or 3 percent are by prescription only.

I have been using my hydroquinone for about a week and see some marked reduction in hyperpigmentation. I plan on discontinuing use of hydroquinone or perhaps using it at a "maintenance" dose to maintain my skin once it is at the desired tone and shade.

Eye cream

It's so important to keep that sensitive eye area moisturized. I've been using eye cream since my teens and have no crow's feet or other lines or wrinkles, whereas friends of mine who have never used eye cream have extensive lines around their eye area. It could be genetics or reduced sun exposure, but I like to think the eye cream helped. :) If you use the protocol I am using (tretinoin, alpha hydroxy, etc.) I believe you will be able to markedly reduce or completely eliminate any appearance of wrinkles around the eye area. But keep your newly wrinkle-free eye area constantly moisturized, please!

There are all sorts of eye creams available on the market and I have used several and find they all more or less get the job done. The cream I am using currenty is by Derma E and called Pycnogenol & Hyaluronic Acid Eye Creme. I have never seen this product available in stores and have only ordered it online. I would recommend this product but because I am frugal (okay, cheap) I would prefer to find a less expensive eye cream. If you have any recommendations, please leave a comment.

Sun screen!

UVA/UVB is so important to maintaining beautiful skin.

Through the years, I have used so many different sunscreens and have never been able to find one I like. I always feel the need to get one with the highest UVA/UVB amounts but to me the sunscreens NEVER absorb into my skin and just sit on top, looking shiny and like I'm sweating. I also like to work out at the gym and fear that after running on the treadmill for an hour, the sunscreen is no longer effective and my skin will be damaged as I walk back to my condo.

Right now I am using Alba sunscreen, which is nice but it still gives me that problem of the sweaty, greasy looking appearance that I so detest. I would recommend it only because it smells good and seems to work, but it doesn't really satisfy me completely. Again, please recommend your favorite sunscreens you use on your face. I am currently trying out a variety of sunscreens and hopefully I will find a keeper!

Putting it all together! - The regimen I am using for anti-aging benefits.

So, based on what I've shared about, here is what I'm doing.

AM: Cleanse skin and wait to dry completely. Then apply your alpha hydroxy acid product. Wait 15 minutes and then apply your sunscreen of choice.

PM: Cleanse skin and wait 30-45 minutes to allow skin to dry completely. Apply a pea shaped amount of your tretinoin product to your facial skin, distributing evenly. Wait 20 minutes and then apply a thin layer of Nadinola moisturizer with active ingredient hydroquinone.

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      Nicole 14 months ago

      How much do you pay for the Retna a