The Dos and Don'ts Of Getting Younger-Looking Skin

When it comes to what “looks good” regarding pretty much anything, the sides can be rather divided. But, when it comes to the arena of younger-looking skin, it’s all pretty straightforward, right? Sure, younger-looking skin can be defined as a complexion that looks plump, glowing and wrinkle-free, but the opinions are still surprisingly mixed on how to best achieve it. So, we asked the pros: What do you think works—and what doesn’t?

Celebrity aesthetician Susan Ciminelli

What works: using products formulated with powerful vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and hyaluronic acid 

What doesn’t: Hydroquinone and Retin-A. In my opinion, these ingredients dry and thin the skin dramatically and it actually becomes brittle, crinkly and full of fine lines and wrinkles. It takes time to repair skin like this that has been desperately depleted.

Hollywood, FL, dermatologist Gary Goldfaden, MD

What works: Less is more. Exfoliation works extremely well for keeping skin looking young. Using retinoids work extremely well, too. Alcohol and sugar elimination is extremely beneficial for younger-looking skin. 

What doesn’t: Overpeeling and overdoing lasers. They make skin look older, tighter, redder and sometimes drier. Too much filler can also cause skin to look waxy and older due to lack of animation in some patients.

Las Vegas plastic surgeon Goesel Anson, MD

What works: Using topical ingredients like vitamin C and retinols and sleeping on your back. If you sleep on your side or stomach, compression of your face against a surface results in distortion of facial skin and sleep wrinkles. While it can be difficult to change sleep habits, back sleeping eliminates any facial compression. 

What doesn’t: Just relying on SPF in makeup or moisturizer. Sunscreens ‘don’t’ work if you're only rely on your makeup with sunscreen or moisturizers with sunscreen. The majority of users will significantly under-estimate their protection. We rarely put on enough makeup or lotion to deliver the SPF stated on the label. The rating is based on an amount of product the manufacturer determines; people rarely use that much. Additional sunscreen should always be applied.

Celebrity aesthetician Mandy Epley

What works: Staying hydrated, eating clean, exercising, sticking to your a skin-care routine, getting enough sleep, and staying positive and happy.

What doesn’t: Drinking alcohol 

New York dermatologist Dendy Engelman, MD

What works: Protecting your skin from UV rays.

What doesn’t: A common misconception I see in patient behavior is tanning in order to clear or conceal acneic skin. This is absolutely not a solution. The reason people believe this is that UV light is anti-inflammatory and can temporarily make acne look better. The effect is quite transient, however, and in actuality sunlight worsens acne because it stimulates more oil production, which results in more breakouts. Additionally, UV radiation accelerates aging causing brown spots, wrinkles, sagging skin, and increased risk of skin cancer.

New York dermatologist Jody Levine, MD, and National Medical Director of AOB Med Spa

What works: Using retinoids and peptides. Research shows that these vitamin-A derivatives speed cell turnover and collagen growth to smooth fine lines and wrinkles and fade brown spots. For fine lines, I recommend a peptide serum to smooth out wrinkles, even around the delicate eye area (which is typically the first place to show fine lines, as the skin is thinner). Peptides trick cells into thinking there’s damage, so they start producing more collagen.

What doesn’t: Facial exercises and oxygen facials. I tend to believe that facial exercising can be counterproductive in the elimination of wrinkles on the face, as stretching and creasing the skin and overuse of the underlying muscle causes the skin to wrinkle (think how crow’s feet and frown lines start). Botox injections, which are used to fight wrinkles, relax the underlying muscles that cause these wrinkles. These exercises seem to have the opposite effect.

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