Stay younger, longer

Here are few suggestions to consider while choosing any anti-aging product or technique

Stay younger, longerEveryone admits that beauty is skin deep. But this depth is so vigorously protected from wrinkles, like it is the most important thing in the world. “Beauty is only skin deep” is actually a misnomer and anti-aging skincare means taking care of your body from deep inside of you as well as out.

Beautiful youthful skin has a great deal to do with your diet, your digestion, your hormone and stress levels, and the state of your entire nutritional health. Anti-aging skincare means maintaining a balanced diet, drinking plenty of water; regular exercising, avoiding stress as well as maintaining a positive attitude to improve body’s immune system. The anti-aging skincare routine strives to maintain a continuous balance between the inner spirit and outward appearance as the greatest source of everlasting beauty.

Scientifically developed anti-aging treatments using a combination of natural healing agents and the latest developmental techniques can indeed have visible, measurable and positive results. With a proper amalgamation of these tools, some parts of the aging process can be slowed or delayed.

While eating right and regular exercise are the most important components of leading a long and healthy life, there is evidence supporting the notion that certain products and treatments may help us look younger. While cosmetic products improve the appearance of wrinkles, acne scars, uneven pigmentation, broken blood vessels and age spots, anyone seeking more dramatic improvements will have to look at other remedies – some performed by aestheticians, but most by dermatologists and plastic surgeons.

Here are some of the more popular anti-aging techniques and products:

  • Anti-oxidants: Anti-oxidants, applied externally and ingested internally, can noticeably improve the firmness and youth of skin. Some popular antioxidants are vitamin A, B, E, CoQ10, beta carotene and selenium. It is believed that the consumption of anti-oxidants may be linked to a delay in the aging process since our bodies need them to fight off substances called free radicals, which scientists have linked to the aging process.
  • Skincare: There are no shortages of wrinkle creams available, and the selection is ever-increasing. If you’re prone to skin allergies, you may want to seek a dermatologist’s help for prescription products. There are anti-aging natural skin care formulas that complement your multi-faceted anti-aging skincare process. Anti-aging skin care will diminish the fine lines and wrinkles while some of the anti-aging skincare products will put moisture and nutrients back into your skin. These anti-aging natural skincare formulas allow your skin to restore its own wrinkle control.

There are several active ingredients that have been clinically proven to be effective skin rejuvenators. These are best to be used at night prior to sleeping. One of the most effective treatments is vitamin A derivatives such a retinol, retinoic acid, retinyl palmitate and other vitamin A derivatives. The next most beneficial anti-aging skin rejuvenation treatment is a chemical exfoliant such as an alpha hydroxyl acid [AHA] or beta hydroxyl acid [BHA] product. The last consideration is including an anti-oxidant to contain the skin damaging free radicals as well as to encourage overall skin repair. Products containing vitamin C Ester, or CoQ10 are good options to explore. Then, of course, there are other viable anti-aging treatments which can be incorporated into your regime depending on your particular skin rejuvenation needs which include Kinerase or Kinetin, pycnogenol, Glycosaminoglycan, Gatuline [plant extract], albumin, Fucogel, and Copper Peptides.

  • Protect your skin: Exposure to the sun is the number one cause of skin damage, including wrinkles. So protect your skin by wearing sunscreen cream with at least SPF 20. Also, wear protective hats and clothing to limit your skins exposure to the suns harmful rays.
  • Hormones: Hormones are a relatively common, although controversial, form of anti-aging therapy. Some common hormone treatments include DHEA, oestrogen, testosterone and melatonin. However, these should be strictly under professional guidance.
  • Moisturise: Fine lines are often brought on by dry skin cells. Therefore, keeping your skin moisturised can help to minimise their appearance.

How to choose a winter-care cream

As the seasons of the year change, we sometimes forget that skin care changes should accompany as well. Consider the extreme temperatures and weather elements of winter for example. There are a few extra things you could do to protect your skin from the crude winters. But the immediate question is: what is the best product to use? Before you rush to the stores to pick up a night cream, make note of certain finer points that will help you decide.

  • Firstly, the choice of the cream will depend on your skin type. If you have an oily and acne-prone skin, use water-based creams or gels at night. If once is not enough, apply more frequently. But it is not advisable to use a thicker cream as it may cause acne the next day.
  • Secondly, the place where you stay influences the choice of your night cream. For example, a dry place like Delhi will require a thicker night cream with lots of moisturising ingredients such as squalene, vitamin C, pycnogenol, aloe vera, vitamin E, and caviar. However, in a place like Mumbai, winters are not as dry and so the insult to the skin is less.
  • The work environment of the person is also important. For example, if you are in Mumbai, which is a warmer place, but you work in an air-conditioned room, your skin will need thick winter cream. For those with outdoor jobs, winter creams should be enriched with SPF [sun protection factor].
  • Usually, you have to resort to a trial-and-error method to choose the right product for your skin — be it winter or summer. You need to keep trying as you could be allergic to one or more ingredients in a product. Consult your dermatologist if there is a problem.
  • If the skin still feels dry, supplement the cream with evening primrose oil capsules of 1000 mg or vitamin E 400 mg daily. A teaspoon of flax seeds is good for moisturising the skin from within. For extremely dry skin, oatmeal creams are better.
  • Cold winter weather can cause dryness and chapping of skin. Chapping is when the skin begins to be rough, red, and/or cracks. The skin could also begin to split and becomes sore. Apply a lip balm or almond oil for cracked lips at nights.
Apratim Goel
Dr Apratim Goel in the CEO and Medical Director of a chain of laser and cosmetic clinics called Cutis Skin Studio, Mumbai. An extremely passionate aesthetician and board certified dermatologist, she is an author and a voracious reader.