Aging is just as natural as any part of our lives, but it can be stressful too. Especially when it comes to our skin. The moment we turn 40, our face and skin reach an aging tipping point. You’ll see it when the changes come suddenly and dramatically because of the onset of a hormonal shift.
By no means is this your fault, so please don’t be so hard on yourself! It’s just how our biology is. Estrogen production decreases gradually during perimenopause, which commonly begins in your mid to late 40s, before plummeting when menopause sets in.
This loss of estrogen means uneven skin tone, greater dryness, a decrease in overall skin thickness, and decreased elasticity, which results in sagging. Fine wrinkles and hyperpigmentation will begin to appear as a result of decades of sun damage and oxidative stress. Meanwhile, those creases that form on your skin? That’s from the natural loss of supportive fat and bone under your skin.
Skincare gets trickier as you age. The best course of action right now is to adopt skincare practices that you’ll love. Being consistent is hard if your routine is not fun! Go for high-quality skincare products and choose your active ingredients carefully.
Read on to learn how you can take better care of your skin in your forties.
Cleanse Your Skin Morning and Night
Did you know that you’ve probably been harming your skin by buying whatever cheap cleanser is on sale or promises the most benefits on the label? Keep in mind that the first step is to select a cleanser that is tailored to your skin type (this rule of thumb applies to almost all facial-care products). If your skin is prone to dryness, use a moisturizing wash. Do you have normal or combination skin? Look for a foamy cleanser that can help remove extra surface oil from the skin.
If you haven’t tried it before, there are so many benefits to oil cleansing that you might want to check out. Oil cleaning is great for removing makeup, sunscreen, and excess sebum, and it’ll leave your skin feeling fresh and luxurious.
If you haven’t added serums to your skincare routine yet, now’s the time to do so! They often contain anti-aging chemicals that aren’t available in cleansers, moisturizers, or facial oils. However, not all serums are made equally. Some you’ll use at night and some are made to be worn in the morning.
In the morning, apply a serum containing antioxidants such as resveratrol and vitamins C and E. These strong chemicals operate as fire extinguishers on the skin, reducing inflammation caused by free radicals, which you’ll often encounter during the day.
At night, opt for a serum with retinol, a strong derivative of vitamin A, instead of an antioxidant-only blend. This will help in restoring your skin by increasing cell turnover, inhibiting collagen degeneration, and boosting new collagen formation.
Retinol is one of the most powerful anti-aging substances on the market, but it loses its effectiveness when exposed to sunlight, so use it only at night. Apply the serum every other night for the first month if you’ve never used a retinol product before to avoid skin irritation. If your skin is really sensitive, avoid retinol and instead opt for a serum containing retinyl palmitate, a milder but equally efficient type of vitamin A.
Don’t Forget to Moisturize
The most crucial thing you can do right now for younger-looking skin is to wear sunscreen every day. While SPF won’t reverse previous sun damage, it’s the best way to avoid further photoaging indications like fine lines, age spots, and discoloration.
Use an SPF daytime moisturizer; it will speed up your morning process and make you less likely to forget to apply sunscreen. Look for moisturizers with an SPF of at least 30 and broad-spectrum protection, which means they block both UVA and UVB radiation. You can even go a step further by choosing SPF moisturizers with DNA repair enzymes like photolyase and endonuclease for maximum protection. These chemicals will help block UV rays at the molecular level, lowering the risk of photoaging even more.
At night, use a separate moisturizer since you won’t be needing SPF by this time. If your skin is dry, search for a moisturizing lotion that contains peptides, which can help stimulate collagen formation, making your skin look smoother and younger. If you prefer face oil, choose one that contains argan or marula oil, since both can help to enhance the flexibility of aging skin.
- Consider medical-grade anti-aging treatments
Your 40s is when forehead lines and crow’s feet start to look more pronounced. To help relax wrinkles, consider an anti-aging Botox® treatment. Botox® is a very popular anti-aging solution. It is a neuromodulator that prevents muscle movement. This, in turn, helps to prevent the appearance of dynamic wrinkles, and to prevent static wrinkles. It can be combined with dermal fillers for even more wrinkle reduction. The results last three to four months, so you will need to continue with maintenance treatments for it to have long-term effect.
Get Head-to-Toe Skin Checks Now and Then
Looking younger is nice, but the most important thing you have to consider in your forties is that your skin is protected against skin cancer. That’s why it’s a good idea to start receiving full-body checks by a board-certified dermatologist once a year, or more regularly if you have a family history of skin cancer or a history of UV damage.
Once you enter your forties, see your dermatologist for a baseline skin examination to ensure there are no early indicators of precancerous skin changes. It’s always easier to catch something early on than it is to deal with the consequences later in life.
Forty and Thriving
Aside from the skincare practices above, the best way to ensure the best skin is to keep your lifestyle healthy. Whatever you eat will reflect on your skin, so stick to a healthy diet rich in hydrating whole foods and low in processed junk filled with sugar and chemical additives. Give your body the time that it needs to refresh and renew by getting enough sleep.
Lastly, even if you use the best, most expensive, and most clinically proven skincare products on the market, if you just use them once in a while, they won’t work. It’s called a skincare routine for a reason; hence, consistency is key. Consult a dermatologist to identify the ideal skincare routine for you, then follow it every day.
Whatever your age is, you’ll always thrive with good skincare, a healthy lifestyle, and a whole lot of love for yourself.
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