The American Academy of Dermatology has put together seven tips to reduce signs of aging, with board-certified dermatologist Susan C. Taylor, MD, FAAD, founding director of the Skin of Color Center at St. Luke's and Roosevelt Hospitals in New York City. Getting better results from your anti-aging products can be as easy as following these simple recommendations:
1. Wear sunscreen every day
The sun's rays accelerate signs of aging, so be sure to use a sunscreen or facial moisturizer that offers broad-spectrum protection and has an SPF of at least 30. Remember to apply sunscreen to all skin that is not covered by clothing.
2. Do not tan
Getting a tan from the sun or a tanning bed exposes you to harmful UV rays that can accelerate aging, causing wrinkles, age spots, a blotchy complexion and even skin cancer. Go for a faux tan
Moisturizing traps water in the skin, which can help reduce the appearance of some fine lines and make your complexion look brighter and younger.
4. Test products
Even those labeled "hypoallergenic". To test, dab a small amount of the product on your inner forearm twice a day for four to five days. If you do not have a reaction, it is likely safe for you to apply to your face.
5. Use the product as directed
Active ingredients can do more harm than good when too much is used. Applying more than directed can cause clogged pores, a blotchy complexion, or other unwanted effects.
6. Stop using products that sting or burn unless prescribed by a dermatologist
Irritating the skin makes signs of aging more noticeable. Note: Some products prescribed by a dermatologist may cause stinging or burning. When under a dermatologist's care, this can be safe and effective.
7. Limit the number of products
Using too many products on your skin, especially more than one anti-aging product, tends to irritate the skin. This often makes signs of aging more noticeable.
Dr. Taylor's skincare shopping tips
When it comes to skincare, are the more expensive products more effective? Not always, says Dr. Taylor. "People need to shop smart since there are some very effective, affordable products in the skin care aisles of their local stores." Whether you buy high-end or drugstore lines, it's important is to allow time for the product to work. "While a moisturizer can immediately plump up fine lines, most products take at least six weeks to work and sometimes it can take three months," she adds.