By Renee Trilivas, Allure magazine
Confronted with a nonstop (and often contradictory) barrage of news about the latest anti-aging ingredients, gizmos, and treatments, it's easy to feel overwhelmed. We asked Jasmina Aganovic, creator of the Stages of Beauty skin-care site (she also happens to be an MIT-educated chemical and biological engineer), to help us cut through the clutter (and the antioxidants, peptides, and retinols) to reveal what your skin really needs as you age.
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In your 20s: Protect and repair. Sun exposure and late nights partying wreak havoc on your skin. "Our skin is besieged by free radical damage from our hectic schedules, sun-worshipping, pollution, boozy late nights out, and smoking," Aganovic explains. Free radicals cause cell damage that can accelerate the aging process. Free radicals can cause "toxin overload" that shows up as that morning-after face of dark circles, under eye bags, puffiness, and dullness. Aganovic recommends that women in their 20s use sunscreen or a moisturizer with at least 30 SPF daily, in conjunction with powerful antioxidants, like African Red Tea that repair environmental damage.
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In your 30s: Exfoliate and regenerate. Most women begin to notice fine lines and wrinkles in their 30s, because of declining collagen and elastin. Skin regeneration also slows dramatically, leading to a dull, uneven skin tone. Aganovic says women in their 30s need to start incorporating proven collagen and elastin supporting ingredients into her daily routine, such as peptides or retinols. Another must? Regular exfoliation with a gentle scrub or at-home peel.
In your 40s: Plump and soothe. "In our 40s, we face a new foe: thinning skin," Aganovic says. Try hyaluronic acid to plump up the skin from within. "Hyaluronic acid can hold 1,000 times its own weight in water, and is naturally present in our bodies-what better way to help make our skin more supple?"
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In your 50s: Hydrate and nurture. In your 50s, hormonal changes can lead to extreme dryness. The skin requires ingredients like glycerin or ceramides that are ultra hydrating and also work to repair the skin's natural moisture barrier. "Your skin has been there with you through it all, now's the time to erase the evidence," Aganovic says. The degradation of the skin's natural barrier also makes the skin more susceptible to the elements. Aganovic recommends soy and white tea extract to help shield against the damage.
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Photo Credit: Fairchild Archive