When it comes to health and the rate of aging, we used to think that our choices were limited—it’s in the genes. Today, however, the aging process no longer mirrors that of our parents and grandparents.
With modern scientific modalities and recent advancements in medical aesthetics, there often exists a vast difference between a person’s chronological age and biological age. It can be hard to distinguish a woman in her twenties from a woman in her forties. Unfortunately, the hands of time swing both ways; we may be 45 chronologically, but biologically, our cells may make us appear 55.
Approximately 36 percent of aging is due to factors beyond our control—our genes and heritage—but the rest is up to us. So, what’s the secret to achieving beauty at any age? Good health, quality of life and, of course, great skin care.
Prevention is crucial during this phase of your life. If you didn’t have good habits in your teens, now is the time to start. Sunscreen should be a part of your daily skin care regimen, applied in the form of an SPF moisturizer, in order to prevent premature aging. The body and skin show little change in our twenties, but external factors such as sun exposure, alcohol consumption, poor dietary habits and smoking can have adverse effects on skin down the road. If you prevent damage and protect your skin while in your twenties, your complexion will thank you for the decades to come.
Between career moves, busy lifestyles and starting a family, our thirties can bring on a variety of different stressors. Many women at this age are plagued by adult acne and inflammatory skin con-ditions due to hormonal fluctuations and work-related tension. More evidence of internal change begins to surface as age spots, crow’s feet and fine lines appear around the eyes and mouth, but signs of aging can be curtailed with professional correctives. Undergoing a series of non-wounding peels in conjunction with an at-home treatment regimen of resurfacing products can dramatically reduce the look of blemishes, wrinkles and sun spots, helping you to hold onto your youth.
As we enter our forties, noticeable differences occur as skin begins to lose elasticity. There may be slight sagging around the neck area, and lines that were only visible when you smiled or laughed in your thirties may now be etched into your complexion. Because skin cells take longer to migrate to the surface, encour-aging cellular turnover and stimulating collagen production is central to promotinghealthier, more youthful looking skin. Incorporating antioxidants into both your diet and skin care routine will assist in preventing further free radical-induced damage. Look for cleansers, exfoliants and serums infused with vitamins A, C and E and load up on fruits, green vegetables, seeds and nuts.
After 50, the skin’s abilities to retain moisture and heal properly are significantly weakened as the body experiences internal changes. Hormonal oscillation and diminished natural reserves in mature and menopausal skin can cause the complexion to appear dry or flaky. Skin care treatments containing essential vitamins, emollients and hormonal regulators such as soy isoflavones and pregnenolone—also believed to play a role in skin immunity and hydration—will aid in replenishing the skin’s lipid barrier to repair tone and texture, and firm sagging skin (now found around the forehead, mouth and eyes) to rebuild definition.