An anti-aging regimen is something we don’t even think twice about as a kid. As children, we never really appreciated the soft and clear skin we had with until we finally hit puberty. According to Carole Aponte, MD Dermatoligist, “Children’s skin is loaded with healthy collagen and elastin fibers, the proteins that give skin its strength and flexibility.” Youthful skin also has plenty of hyaluronic acid, a substance that fills in the spaces between cells and keeps skin hydrated.
It doesn’t stop there though! Once we get past that stage we start to worry about our skin aging. There are two types of skin aging: intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsic aging occurs in everyone. Aponte explains that it’s characterized by dryness and thinning of the skin as you get older. This leads to sagging, fine lines, and wrinkles. “This type of aging develops gradually and at a fairly steady rate so it’s generally not visibly evident until adulthood.
Men and Women Age at Different Rates
Men and women also age at different rates. Read up on the differences in our skin here. Extrinsic aging is caused by external factors, most notably UV radiation from over exposure to the sun. This can lead to premature aging in both men and women. This accounts for up to 90% of what we think of as “normal” skin aging. One of the main reasons that babies’ skin looks so great is that it hasn’t had time to develop significant sun damage. “Almost all of the roughness, deeper wrinkles, discoloration, and age spots we associate with aging is caused by sun damage,” explains Aponte.
The good news is that it is preventable by lathering on sunscreen whenever you’ll be exposed to the sun’s harsh rays, that includes cloudy days as UVB rays are still present. UVA rays are equally strong year round. It means you need to be wearing a broad spectrum SFP 15 or greater every day.
Come Summer, Practicing other Sun-Safe Behaviors
Wear hats and sunglasses (your eyes can suffer from sun damage as well!). Protective clothing is very important. Also, seeking shade, and limiting time in direct sunlight between 10 A.M. and 2 P.M. when the sun’s rays are the strongest. Sunscreen is non-negotiable; there are a few other practices that will help ensure you hit adulthood with a high level of your baby-soft skin intact.
Three ways to Embrace and Maintain Youthful Complexion
If you’re a pre-teen:
There are three main ways to embrace and maintain your youthful complexion. First, you should apply sunscreen regularly to all sun-exposed skin. Secondly, eat a healthy, well-balanced diet with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. Healthy eating contains essential nutrients, vitamins, and antioxidants to help protect skin from environmental damage. Finally, wash your face twice a day to remove any dirt, oil, makeup, or other chemicals that build up before they can irritate or damage your skin in the long run.
If you’re a teen:
Continue the basic skincare habits listed above and be sure to get enough sleep. We’re here to set the record straight: There really is some truth in that whole beauty rest theory. It’s during sleep that the body performs many essential maintenance and repair processes. It also clears away much of the potentially harmful chemicals that build up from daily environmental damage. Got spring break coming up? Beware of sunbathing or hitting up an indoor tanning bed. Make sure to use a sunscreen daily especially when in direct sunlight (pretty much all the time). Clear Essence My Natural Beauty Lotion with SPF 15 is a natural sun protectant formulated with natural ingredients including aloe, shea butter and glycerin. Make sure to reapply sunscreen every 1-2 hours of direct sun exposure to prevent damage to skin cells. If you’re being treated for acne, sun protection is especially important, as many acne treatments can make skin more susceptible to sunburn and irritation.
If you’re in your twenties:
Upgrade your daily moisturizer, adding a product supercharged with antioxidants and that hyaluronic acid we told you about. Before late nights in the office (or out on the town!) start taking a toll on those under eyes of yours, invest in a hydrating and caffeine-packed eye cream, gel, or roll-on serum. Clear Essence’s Platinum Line Skin Lightening Serum helps to lighten those dark under eye circles while promoting a healthy glow to the skin tone.
And if your skin is already showing signs of early aging from sun-soaking during your younger years or those all-nighters you pulled during undergrad, adding a topical antioxidant like a vitamin C or E may help reverse some early signs of damage. Check out the Clear Essence Vitamin C Line which is packed with lemon and licorice extracts for an even tone and plumped complexion.
In those with oily or acne-prone skin, an over-the-counter product that exfoliates dead skin cells such as Alpha Hydroxy Acid, or exfoliating soap bars may also help treat damage and even prevent any skin-thinning caused by intrinsic aging. Clear Essence’s Anti-Aging Line is formulated with alpha hydroxy acid ingredients to help renew damaged skin and regenerate healthy skin cells. The Complexion Soap with AHA is one of our most popular face washes as it naturally exfoliates the skin bringing out a more radiant tone. To add a quick step to your current regimen, our Toner Astringent with AHA is also a great cleanser for second step removal of any dirt or bacteria left behind from a first step wash. Regularly exfoliating the skin and removing dried, dehydrated skin cells will help to keep skin even toned and bright.