Department stores and pharmacy shelves are filled with anti-wrinkle & anti-aging products. Women constantly look to these products hoping they contain the fountain of youth. The plethora of choices leaves me so confused but it’s not as confusing as trying to answer this question: “What age should women start using anti-wrinkle products?”
Is it 30? Is it 40? Is it when I notice my first wrinkle? I refuse to leave my youthful skin in the hands of a uneducated guess. Therefore I contacted Howard L. Brooks, MD, seen on the Dr Oz Show and one of DC’s most sought after dermatologists. I asked him my simple yet complex question: “What age should women start using anti-wrinkle products?”. Surprisingly he had this to say:
“The best anti-wrinkle cream is SPF and you should start that 2 months of age or older.”
I immediately felt doomed and thought about the one or two times I actually used SPF (aka Sunscreen) in my entire life. With my mouth open, thoughts of old wrinkly skin and a long awkward pause he continued and made me feel like there was hope!
“Everyone should wear SPF 15+ on a daily basis, whether its snowing, raining or cloudy outside. SPF will prevent the harmful effects of UV rays and sunspots which cause wrinkles. Definitely start this daily in your mid-to-late twenties.”
Whew. I’m just a tad bit late with the regimen but it is never too late to start. He went on to say:
“There are two things I recommend to women starting in their mid-twenties. The first being SPF 15+ every single day. Look for it in moisturizer or in foundation. The second thing, is over-the-counter retinol. My favorite over-the-counter retinol is the RoC overnight cream. Retinol is a vitamin A derivative. Vitamin A has been shown to help collagen production which can decrease fine lines and wrinkles. People of color may have complaints about discoloration, dark circles under the eyes or blotchy complexion, retinol can help with this. Ethnic and darker toned skin can dry out quicker and these products are very drying. They can also leave an ‘ashy’ appearance. It is however temporary but the benefits outweigh the small side effects that will resolve in a 2-3 week time frame.”
So there you have it. There are many products stocked on shelves to help you hold on to your youth. However, you want to make sure you arm yourself with these daily basics, SPF 15+ and an over-the-counter retinol.
For more information on Dr Howard Brooks or the SKIN Cosmetic Dermatology of Georgetown D.C. please visit his website at http://www.georgetownskin.com/