Skincare For Women Over 50
As I'm quickly rounding the corner to birthday #52, I think I'm well qualified to talk about skincare for the more mature audience! In fact, I'm there.
Rather than dealing with a complicated, fussy, million-step skincare routine, I've found I'm happiest in the “less is more” lane. However, I would be remiss if I didn’t start this conversation with a critical question. Are you wearing broad-spectrum sunscreen every single day? I think a skincare routine without sunscreen is pointless. Can't take credit for that line, I read it somewhere, and now I can’t stop repeating it.
Wear SPF Everyday
Why do we tout broad-spectrum SPF so much? Because using broad-spectrum SPF simply means you are getting protection from UVB rays that burn and UVA rays that age. As we get deeper into fall each day, I doubt using daily mineral sunscreen is top of mind for most people. However, once you understand that UVA (think UV-Aging) rays are the ones doing damage to your collagen and elastin and are responsible for photoaging, you may want to rethink this vital and simple daily step in your routine. Why not focus on prevention vs. repair? Also, if you're using any retinols, chemical exfoliants, or other potions, your skin is going to be more sensitive and prone to sun damage. Have I convinced you yet that a routine without SPF is pointless?
Ok, I'm stepping off the SPF soapbox and on to barrier health. A healthy barrier is essential to the skin giving it protection from environmental stressors while helping skin feel and look its best. Once your barrier has been disrupted (think over-exfoliation or too many products with too many active ingredients that don’t play well together), that’s when you get dryness, rashes, and any other irritation. I'm going back to the “less is more” approach here. A gentle cleanser, effective hydration, and good sun protection all add up to a healthy skin barrier.
Healthy Lifestyle Choices
I wouldn’t be honest if I said you didn’t have to address the big picture either. Holistically taking care of your body by getting plenty of sleep, exercise, eating unprocessed foods, lots of water, and a little stress-management go a very long way. Let’s not forget that stress can do a real number on your skin (these days, there’s more than enough stress floating around.)
Hormonal imbalances, specifically, perimenopause and menopause, are another thing that can influence your skin. While every woman may have a different experience, the bottom line is unstable hormones can cause unstable skin. I had a doozy of an experience with adult acne in my mid 40's. Once my hormones balanced, so did my skin. That's just a gentle reminder that what's going on inside your body may show up on your skin.
Hydrate and Nourish Your Skin
We also produce less natural oil (aka as sebum) as we age, and that's where having a bit more hydration is vital. For me, oils are the way to go. They hydrate, nourish, and protect your skin, keeping it resilient and ready to combat wrinkles. Essential fatty acids help your skin maintain a healthy natural barrier to protect it against the sun, wind, and pollutants.
Many people are wary of using products with oils on their faces. I frequently hear: Won’t it leave me feeling greasy? Will it make my skin break out?
Let me reassure you. Organic skin products with oil are the gentlest, most effective ways to keep your skin looking its best. Facial oils work with the natural oils your skin already has by giving you an extra nourishing boost of moisturization.
In short, I'm a true believer in oil-based skincare because I see the results: clean, soft, healthy, and radiant skin. Don't be surprised if someone tells you "You're glowing!"
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