BAFFLED BY SKINCARE?
HOW TO BE SKIN CARE SAVVY
We all want glowing, radiant skin but with all the skin-care choices on the market today, it’s easy to feel confused.
Do you really need that new sonic soap cleanser or to add an essence to your skin care routine? Do designer brands with the latest technology really work? How can you know which products are really worth your money when formulas have never been so complex and sophisticated?
The good news is that there are skin products that really work and are worth the investment The bad news is that there’s never been more confusion and uncertainty about which products to choose to get results.
According to a new study 33 per cent of UK women admit that when it come to skin care they are worried about ageing but are not doing anything about it. And over half of those aged 55 and over are the least likely to act on skin ageing concerns. And research suggests that the reason for this attitude is that consumers are simply baffled by all their choices and simply do not know what products to use or when.
It’s become a challenge to decode a cream’s ingredients let alone keep up with it all the pseudoscience when all you want is a nice pot of cream that will make your skin look better. Even people who have worked in the beauty industries for years grapple with the anti-ageing actives of modern skincare. What does what? What is most important?
There are currently at least 10,000 ingredients traditionally used in beauty products and the list keeps growing So if you are confused, who can blame you?. So to try and cut through the skin care mumbo jumbo here are a few pointers to remember and a few of the latest technology on the high street decoded
DECODING THE LATEST LAUNCHES
Estee Lauder Revitalising Supreme Cream, £44
What it claims – Responds to skin’s changing needs, helps reduce the appearance of multiple sigs of ageing with their exclusive new IntuiGen Technology.
What it means – the formula is able to hone in on your skin’s unique signs of ageing and then respond to it, reducing the appearance of wrinkles, loss of firmness dullness and dehydration leaving skin smoother, clearer and more radiant
Verdict A gel cream which contains a good array of anti ageing antioxidants and ingredients, a good price and the concept sounds very clever but even I am baffled how this new technology can work
Lancôme Absolue L’Extrait £260
What it claims – The ultimate elixir which contains up to two million rose cells, extracted through a state of the art extraction process and cultivated via an exclusive biotechnological growth process called Fermogenesis
What it means – Fermogenesis preserves the properties of rose cells, keeping them fresh and intact and in their unaltered state
Verdict – Wow! £260 for a bottle of what is just a rose serum which will do what most moisturisers can – hydrate skin.
Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate £60
What it claims –The ultimate concentrate for enhancing skin’s multi-defensive power against signs of aging, environmental damage and stress. Skin becomes smoother and more resilient making wrinkles less noticeable and your complexion appears to glow with more radiance than ever.
What it means – Your skin’s immune defense relies on specific cells called Langerhans – ‘which detect pollution,
UV and emotional stress – which decrease with age and Shiseido has found a way to keep these cells active for longer. The concentrate contains baker’s yeast an enzyme which triggers Langerhans, Bulgarian rose water and a blend of other anti inflammatory ingredients like ginkgo biloba
Verdict I’m yet to be convinced about triggering Langerhans cells. As for strengthening skin’s environmental defences, I prefer sunscreen.
Aveda Botanicals Kinetics Energising Eye Cream £28
What it claims – A plant energy complex helping to increase energy in the cells to help reduce puffiness, dark circles.
What it means –Naturally derived from plants, fragrance free and gentle formula, which contains liquorice root and coffee bean extracts known for soothing properties in Ayurveda
Verdict A powerhouse formula loaded with plant based antioxidants but contains no SPF so use a concealer containing SPF on top. Good for temporary puffiness but can’t cure puffiness caused through ageing. Surgery is the long-term answer
Clinique Foaming Sonic Facial Soap £16
What it claims Creamy foaming facial soap created for a sonic cleansing brush.
What it means Formulated to use with Clinque’s brush and will help bristles glide across face.
My Verdict It’s a good fragrance and oil free cleanser, which you can use, with any cleansing brush!
STAY SKIN SAVVY
*Be Clean Throw out your wipes Choose water soluble cleansers that do not lather up and yes those cleansing brushes are a great investment Cleanse twice a day am and pm. These simple changes can transform skin in a few weeks.
Wear Sunscreen all year round. – Ninety per cent of skin ageing is caused by sun exposure so sunscreen is the ultimate anti ager. Choose a moisturiser with an SPF. I cannot understand why some of the best-known brands on the high street still do not include any sun protection in their formulas.
Know Your ingredients My essential ingredients for great skin include the following and for a truly great product makes sure these ingredients are listed at the top rather than the bottom of the list, it’s the amount that counts!
Coenzyme Q10 – This powerful antioxidant, also known as Co-Q10 speeds up cell repair and aids healing. It’s particularly beneficial for menopausal skin. It’s worth taking the supplement, too.
Hyaluronic acid – This is found naturally in the deeper layers of the skin and keeps it smooth and plump due to its ability to hold up to 1,000 times its weight in water. It’s a great choice for mature and dehydrated skin. A lot of the big cosmetic houses are now putting this in their creams.
Retinol – I love this ingredient. It’s derived from antioxidant vitamin A and rejuvenates the skin by helping cell turnover. It also boosts cell production and collagen formation.
Glycolic acid – I’m a big fan of this ingredient. It’s a fruit acid that comes from sugar cane. Fruit acids are collectively known as AHAs (or alpha hydroxyl acids). Glycolic acid is a brilliant exfoliator, removing dead skin and boosting cell renewal for a luminous complexion. It also stimulates collagen with regular, long-term use. You must wear an SPF15+ with it, though, to protect the newer skin that’s exposed from the sun.
Pentapeptides – These amino acids are small enough to penetrate the epidermis (the outer layer of your skin), stimulating collagen production and helping to keep wrinkles at bay. Palmitoyl pentapeptide (commonly called Matrixyl) is one to look out for.
Vitamin C – This powerful antioxidant intercepts skin cell damage, boosting collagen production and counteracting sun damage. It also has an anti-inflammatory effect.
Vitamin E – Another super-antioxidant, vitamin E is vital to protect skin cells from ultra violet light, pollution, cigarette smoke, and other factors that produce cell-damaging free radicals. It also increases the effectiveness of sunscreens.
Don’t overdo it There’s no limit to the number of products w can slap on our faces. But over applying creams isn’t good and can sometimes affect the pH level of the products you are using. I like a four-step approach, cleanser, serum sunscreen and mosituriser am and pm, cleanser night cream or mask. I am a great believer in weekly masks to keep the skin plump and healthy
Wrong Product? If you’re using the wrong products for your skin type, then chances are that your skin won’t look its best and can end up looking dry, dull and lacklustre. Often fancy products loaded with snazzy ingredients can cause allergic reactions because they are way more than your skin needs.Get a skin analysis – ask for advice at the skincare counter (but bear in mind many sales consultants work on commission so don’t be fobbed off into buying what you don’t need) or better still, seek out a local beauty salon with a therapist trained in understanding skin.
Miracle Claims Facial aging involves more than just the skin. Your muscles get lazy, skin sags, soft tissue breaks down, and fat accumulates. Creams work well on fine lines and roughness, but fall a bit short when it comes to sagging. You have to be realistic – nothing is going to give you a facelift in a jar, the only way you’ll achieve this is with non-surgical treatments such as thread lifts, fillers and muscle-relaxing injections to ease lines or lasers and peels that change the structure of the skin and have long-lasting results