At what age did you realize it was time to step up your skin care routine? Were you in your 20s or 30s? Maybe 40s? After you answer, think about this: at what age do you wish you had started to take better care of your skin? Recently, we posted this question on our Facebook page and were surprised to hear many of you say you wish you had started a good skin care routine earlier than you did. Well, let us remind you, it’s never too soon to take great care of your skin.
We sat down with our Obagi Education Managers, Aimee and Perri, to ask them about the early signs of skin aging and what they recommend you do to address these first signs when they arise.
Where do most people first notice signs of aging?
Signs of aging are often noticed on the eyes, face, hands, and décolletage. Using proper sun protection, like applying sunscreen and wearing a hat, will ensure that you are doing your job to protect your skin against sun damage and can reduce the chances for signs of aging including mottled hyperpigmentation (dark spots), fine lines and wrinkles, and rough texture. Simple, yet effective!
How is younger skin different than aging skin?
Aged skin exhibits certain characteristics due to the natural intrinsic aging process, which is affected by genetics and nutrition, as well as extrinsic factors like sun exposure and free radical damage. As we age, several changes occur in our skin:
- Our melanocytes (the cells that give our skin its color) decrease in number
- The epidermis exhibits significant thinning due to decreased production of collagen and elastin, and
- Sebaceous glands no longer produce as much oil as younger skin.
- Thus, aging skin often appears paler, drier, and thinner than it did when we were younger.
It’s obvious to see why your skin care regimen will change throughout your life. Your 20’s is an ideal time to start making regular appointments with your skin care physician to discuss your skin care.
I occasionally breakout with acne. How can I combat adult acne and wrinkles at the same time?
A retinol can be a wonderful option for a patient with acne-prone skin who also has emerging skin-aging concerns. Experts believe retinols (and other retinoids) work by supporting skin cell turnover which, in turn, keeps dead skin cells from clogging pores. They also smooth the and reduce the mottled appearance of sun damaged skin.1
I’m in the 25—35 years old age bracket. What is a good general routine to care for my skin?
A good, basic skin care routine includes an appropriate cleanser for your skin type (normal/oily or normal/dry), an exfoliant, and a broad-spectrum sunscreen. Retinols can assist with acne-prone skin and early skin aging concerns that are common at this age. A great Obagi system that encompasses a range of products to address these early signs of aging is Obagi360™.
Of course, everyone’s skin is different and it’s important to talk to your skin care physician about which products are right for you and about any other skin care ingredients that can help with specific concerns you might have.
I’m starting to notice fine lines, crow’s feet and/or bags around my eyes. What can I do to address this?
Obagi offers great products that can help address the signs of skin aging around the eyes. Our ELASTIderm® Eye products are specifically designed for the delicate eye area and come in three formulations; a cream, a gel and a serum with a roller ball applicator for varying skin needs. Our ELASTIderm Cream and Gel formulations contain a bi-mineral complex formulated to reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and crepiness around the eye. Alternatively, the ELASTIderm Serum, with a roller ball applicator, uses the same bi-mineral complex but also offers 2% caffeine to help reduce puffiness around the eyes.
I’m not ready for more serious cosmetic procedures like injections or fillers. Is there something I can do or a skin care product I can use that can help me looking younger but is not as aggressive in nature?
Whether or not you’re interested in injections, fillers, or other cosmetic procedures, you always want your skin to looks its best. Obagi Medical Products offers several great skin care systems for patients who would like to address various skin aging concerns without undergoing the knife or needle. One of the newest rising stars is in our product line-up is the Obagi360 system, which happens to be designed specifically for addressing early signs of aging. Harnessing the power of retinol, this simple 3-product skin care system offers a multitude of benefits, including an exfoliating cleanser (to support skin cell turnover and minimize acne breakouts), retinol, and a dual function broad-spectrum UV defense and moisturizer in one. Consider starting on this system while you’re young to help keep signs of skin aging at bay.
In addition, Obagi offers a full spectrum of transformation skin care systems to meet the needs of all ages and all skin types. For more information on the following systems, visit our products page:
Obagi Nu-Derm®: Designed for moderate to severe signs of skin aging and pigmentation.
Obagi-C® Rx: Ideal for early intervention and appropriate for a patient with mild to moderate signs of aging, or for the patient who may not be ready for the Nu-Derm System.
Gentle Rejuvenation: For a sensitive skin patient, who is looking for calming and soothing products that are non-irritating.
What is your number one tip for preventing or slowing skin aging for every skin type?
Our number one tip for reducing the visible signs of skin aging is to wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen every single day—during the winter and summer, rain or shine! A broad-spectrum sunscreen like our Obagi Sun Shield SPF 50, provides protection against the sun’s harmful UVA and UVB rays. Too much exposure to UV light can wreak havoc on your skin, resulting in not only immediate consequences like sunburn, but also contributes to wrinkling, sagging, and pigmentation and texture changes. As our Head of Product Development, Laurence Dryer, explains in this video, sun damage can lead to structural changes in the skin that may not be visible for years. Applying a broad-spectrum sunscreen can keep these signs of skin aging at bay, and help to prevent future damage to the skin. And remember, it’s important to be sure you apply ample sunscreen and re-apply it throughout the day—we recommend every two hours, especially if you are swimming, exercising, or perspiring.
In addition, ingredients like L-ascorbic acid, used in Obagi’s Professional-C™ Serums, are another great way patients can minimize the signs of skin damage caused by the sun and other environmental stressors.
Of course, aside from good skin care we always recommend drinking plenty of water, eating a variety of colorful fresh fruits and vegetables, and getting enough sleep for general health!