Taking care of your skin from your 20s to your 50s and beyond

Although ageing is part of life, it’s not always an easy thing to accept, especially when changes affect our appearance and as a result, our confidence.

Therefore establishing a good skincare routine and sticking to it from our early 20s is pivotal to ensure we age not just gracefully but enjoy glowing, healthy and young-looking skin even when we enter our 60s.

How does the ageing process affect your skin?

As you get older, your natural skin cell turnover slows down. This affects the way your skin behaves and its appearance Hence it is important to adapt the type of products and treatments you have in order to ensure they help skin cycles at different stages over the course of your life.

Skin in your 20s

During your 20s, your skin should be pretty low maintenance, even though it is during this decade that skin experiences some major transformations. Unless you suffer from a particular skin condition, such as acne or rosacea, your skin shouldn’t give you too many headaches. It is, however, highly advised that you get the appropriate skincare routine in place now, as it’ll certainly pay off when you reach your 50s and beyond.

Your mid twenties mark the beginning of a slower skin cellular turnover as well as a decline of collagen production, leading to a duller complexion, fine lines and less laxity.

To help ward off some of these effects on the skin, your skincare routine should involve cleansing, exfoliating, and moisturising. When it comes to your cleanser, opt for products which are gentle but effective, helping restore the natural skin barrier and providing a calming effect.

Then, hydrate your skin with a moisturiser containing vitamin C, as this has some of the highest levels of antioxidants, which can protect your skin from environmental damage and help reduce the development of fine lines and wrinkles. 

Moisturisers containing vitamin A are also great as this vitamin not only slows down the breakdown of collagen and elastin, but also it increases cell turnover and repairs existing UV damage.

Your best ally, however, is always going to be a good sunscreen as UVA and UVB rays are the number one cause of premature skin ageing. You should wear sunscreen every day, all year round to protect your skin from free radicals and developing fine lines, wrinkles and discolouration.

Skin in your 30s

When your reach your 30s, your skin starts to thin, especially in the area around the eyes, and the loss of subcutaneous fat pads in the mid-face, under eye hollows and mouth corners can start to make you look tired and drawn.

Cell turnover continues to slow down and important proteins such as collagen and elastin breakdown faster and less is made of them as you grow older. This causes the appearance of forehead wrinkles, crow’s feet, bags under the eyes, and more prominent laugh lines known as naso-labial folds.

Your skin can also become drier, more susceptible to irritation, less radiant, and you may develop skin concerns such as acne, rosacea or hyperpigmentation.

As well as continuing to use the appropriate skincare protocol, your 30s are a great time to treat your skin to chemical peels. Since your skin cells aren’t turning over as often, you can rid your skin of these dead cells with a peel to reveal newer, brighter skin cells underneath. This not only makes your skin more glowing, but also it helps ensure that the products you layer on top are absorbed more deeply.

If you’ve been following my blog, you know I offer the Obagi Blue Peel Radiance. It is a salicylic acid-based peel, a type of acid which exfoliates, unclogs pores and has anti-bacterial properties as it can deeply penetrate the skin. It is then a great peel to treat fine lines and wrinkles, rough, uneven skin, blemishes and mild to moderate photo-ageing, as it removes the top layer of skin and stimulates the production of collagen and cellular turnover.

This peel can also be adapted to your skin type, sensitivity and the severity of skin concerns, meaning you can achieve best results within a reasonable period of time.

In terms of a good and reliable skincare range, the Obagi 360 system is perfect for people in their 20s and 30s, concerned with preventing skin ageing. It includes Retinol 0.5% and sunscreen to protect the skin and address the early visible signs of ageing.

If you suffer from a skin condition, such as acne, rosacea or hyperpigmentation, I would strongly recommend investing in a professional skincare regime, which is specifically formulated to target your concern and give you optimal results. Obagi has several prescription-only products designed to treat such problems.

Women in their 30s can also suffer from melasma, a condition which can occur during pregnancy. There are specific prescription-only medication that can be used to improve this skin pigmentation problem, either used alone or as part of an Obagi skincare kit, such as vitamin C and hydroquinone.

Obagi also has several pregnancy and breast-feeding safe products that can be used by women so that their skin is in tip-top condition even when not using their normal skincare system and with hormones flying around the place changing their skin. If you are pregnant and would like to find out more, you can contact me directly for a skin consultation and to discuss pregnancy-safe options.

Skin in your 40s

In your 40s, your facial volume will continue to reduce as your skin thins and you’ll start noticing some sagging around the mouth, chin and temples. Also, as the stores of fat under your skin deplete, and the production of collagen and elastin keep dropping, your skin is likely to become more sensitive to damage and develop broken capillaries and visible blood vessels through normal wear and tear.

In addition, your skin can also turn a lot drier, becoming irritated more easily, and reactive to products which you may have used in the past, but are now suddenly too harsh for it.

The best topical ingredients for this decade are those formulated to repair DNA damage, increase collagen production, improve elasticity, fade unwanted pigmentation, and thicken skin. Retinoid or retinol creams will help increase collagen synthesis, improving skin elasticity and decreasing fine lines. Hyaluronic acid is another skin hydrator that binds water and keeps skin looking dewy and young.

Your 40s is also a good decade to invest in anti-ageing aesthetic treatments such as dermal fillers and wrinkle-softening injectables, as well as lasers which can help remove pigmentation, dullness, and texture problems.

The Obagi-C Rx system is great for women in their forties; it includes 4% hydroquinone to reduce pigmentation as well as Vitamin C to help photoageing (premature ageing of the skin caused by repeated exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun).

Skin in your 50s

Skin changes that have been taking place during your 40s, will become even more pronounced after menopause. Choosing the right aesthetic treatment or skincare protocol to help your body recover from this hormonal transition is crucial to maintain a healthy and young-looking completion during this phase, when your body is adjusting hormones levels.

After menopause about 30% of your skin’s collagen is lost, leaving skin thinner and less firm. There is also a much greater slowdown in oil production and cell turnover.

The two most common skin issues that women in their 50s face are: dryness, caused by your skin being more exposed to damage as its skin barrier ages, becoming more porous and less effective, and sagging, due to facial fat loss and bone reabsorption, resulting from the bones in your skull shrinking as you age.

For older skin already showing signs of ageing (wrinkles, pigmentation, fine lines, rough texture, etc), the Obagi NuDerm system works wonders. It can transform damaged skin at any age but obviously the older you are the more damage you are likely to have so the greater the results.

Whatever age bracket you fall in to, during times of stress such as the current Coronavirus lockdown, divorce, grief, menopause, career, kids, etc, your skin can be more prone to breakouts. The Obagi CLENZIderm system is scientifically proven to specifically target acne and blemishes in adult skin. Specific products such as Tretinoin can also greatly improve acne as well as signs of ageing.

If you suffer from a particular skin condition or would like to treat your skin with a prescription-only skincare range, formulated to transform your skin from within and restore its youth and radiance, I’d love to hear from you. We can design a protocol to target your particular needs and bring you the best results.