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Just as beauty trends come and go with each season, your skin care regimen should be adjusted as the skin itself changes—and that just occurs naturally with age. The state of your skin is very much tied to your overall health and lifestyle habits, and the products and facial treatments you use should be tailored to those needs. Kristen Ma, aesthetician and co-founder of Pure Simple spas in Toronto, shares her skin care secrets on how to take care of your skin at every age for a lifelong beautiful complexion.
Anti aging skin care: 20s
Anti aging skin care in your mid-to-late twenties is more about taking a supporting role than executing an aggressive attack on your skin. “You want to moisturize and support the skin,” says Ma. “Ideally, it’s about prevention, not something that causes further damage.”
So you have gotten away with skipping your daily moisturizer and forgetting to wash off your makeup several nights a week up until this point, but it’s time to outgrow bad skin care habits. In your mid-twenties, “Your skin cells stop regenerating as quickly,” she says. And because your collagen production generally slows down by the age of 25, now is the perfect time to incorporate a face serum into your daily routine. “It’s a great addition to boost hydration and help your skin retain water.”
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Preventative skin care in your twenties should be focused on incorporating water content into the skin, says Ma. It's also the perfect time to invest in a good eye cream to protect the delicate skin around the eye area.
Anti aging skin care: 30s
The upside—if you can imagine one—of all this effort is that the actual aging process itself is a gradual one: signs typically won’t appear in the skin until your mid-thirties. Which again, brings up the need to adjust our skin care regimen accordingly. “Women in their thirties may be more career focused and time-poor, and that takes a toll on your skin and body,” says Ma. You may notice that the skin is significantly more dehydrated—where your skin was once more oily and moisturized, it's now much drier, and there’s a loss of firmness and elasticity.
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Continue your use of serum going forward: “It’s one of the best products to incorporate water into the skin,” says Ma. While you may consider using a heavier cream to bump up hydration, the focus is to put water back into the skin, and not oil, which is found in many dense creams. And if you haven’t already, start exfoliating regularly: “Your skin turns over less frequently and dead cells sit on the surface of the complexion.” No more than two-to-three times per week, she advises (try Pure Simple’s Organic Vanilla Cleansing Powder, which can be mixed into your cleanser to create a gentle scrub). Or try a fruit enzyme peel, which digests the skin cells in the surface layer as opposed to buffing them away.
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It’s also worth applying a face mask treatment two-to-three times per week, again, to promote cellular turnover. “You’ll look brighter, and moisturizer will absorb better into the skin because there isn’t any dead skin blocking it,” she says.
Anti aging skin care: 40s, 50s and beyond
Your best skin care defense against the aging process is incorporating treatments that replenish the vitamins and moisture your skin naturally loses over time. “You want to stimulate collagen production and encourage proper blood flow to keep tissues healthy,” says Ma, who suggests ingredients like Vitamin C and ginseng to promote cellular turnover. When blood isn’t circulating properly, skin may become dehydrated and have a dull appearance to it. Non-surgical facelifts are facial treatments that stimulate energy and water retention, while increasing circulation—this encourages skin to absorb nutrients and reduces puffiness.
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For sunspots—which naturally occurs in the skin as a byproduct of living—facial oils will help to improve the texture and pigmentation of the skin (Ma recommends applying sea buckthorn or rosehip oils to the face, combined with regular exfoliation). As loss of bone mass is also a part of aging, structural changes may occur in the face, which causes excess skin and sagging. But taking a holistic approach to your health, incorporating a proper diet and regular exercise in your lifestyle, will help in setting yourself up for aging gracefully (and toned muscles, naturally).
“It’s about mitigating your expectations,” explains Ma. And radiating with naturally healthy and glowing skin in the process.