Never start microneedling without slathering on some kind of primer first: Not only does that medium make the treatment feel less harsh on your skin, but also, when you use a great treatment, you’re literally pushing those ingredients deep into your skin for maximum absorption—up to 90% more than you would just by using your fingers and leaving it there. I typically use a serum with additional collagen-boosting ingredients like hyaluronic acid. (Just be sure to avoid super-reactive elements like retinol or vitamin C.)
Despite great demand, many anti-aging products and treatments have not been proven to give lasting or major positive effects. One study found that the best performing creams reduced wrinkles by less than 10% over 12 weeks, which is not noticeable to the human eye. Another study found that cheap moisturisers were as effective as high-priced anti-wrinkle creams. A 2009 study at Manchester University showed that some ingredients had an effect.
Eye cream doesn't have to be costly to be effecting—take this RoC cream for example: It's not only super affordable at $23, it's made, tested, and approved for those with sensitive skin, so it won't irritate it, it also helps boost cell turnover for more youthful-looking eye skin thanks to the retinol it contains. Aside from that, it has hyaluronic acid in it to plump the thin skin around your eyes, naturally ironing out any fine lines. Bonus: Dr. Nazarian recommends this drugstore treatment to her patients, so you know it's good. Smooth a dab of the powerful formula under your eyes in the evening, and make sure to follow up with an SPF in the morning, since retinol can make you more prone to sunburns.
We've raved about Mad Hippie's budget-friendly vitamin C serum in the past, but their Antioxidant Facial Oil shouldn't be overlooked either. Powerful ingredients like organic argan oil, pomegranate seed oil, and sea buckthorn berry extract are packed in the vegan formula. Apply a few drops with the vitamin C serum (followed by sunscreen, of course) for a moisture-rich combo that will leave skin silky smooth.
“I've been applying hyaluronic acid to my skin for years. It’s a substance naturally found in the skin and works to maintain water for a fuller, more youthful look. Its unique, moisture-binding feature allows it to hold many times its own weight in water. I used to apply a high-grade version of hyaluronic acid topically to my face, but the molecules were large, making it difficult for them to absorb into my skin. Today, smaller molecules of high-grade hyaluronic acid with better topical absorption capabilities can be found in over-the-counter products, including this gel cream that I apply nightly. Bonus: Its hydrating properties curb the irritation caused by retinols.
Retinoids are one of the most well-documented wrinkle fighters around, reversing the signs of aging in study after study (after study). A class of chemicals derived from vitamin A, retinoids work in two ways: First, they help your skin slough off old cells and make new ones — a process our bodies are good at when young, but which slows down as we age. Second, they spur collagen production, improving elasticity and filling in lines — another natural process that tends to slow down with age.
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“As the skin ages, its cellular turnover capabilities slow down. A gentle, weekly scrub promotes cell turnover and can help keep skin glowing and healthy-looking. Used once a week, this scrub gently exfoliates my skin without irritation and contains ingredients like lavender and probiotics to help calm things down. I have rosacea and I'm able to use this product without any issues. I consider it a nice wake up for my skin,” says Dr. Elizabeth Tanzi, M.D., assistant clinical professor, Department of Dermatology at the George Washington University Medical Center.
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