To ensure you limit the effects of age, choose a multi-step regimen that cleanses, exfoliates, treats, moisturises and protects your skin. Image Credit: Shutterstock

With every birthday that comes around, our skin changes and becomes more mature. So, it makes sense to change our skincare regimen accordingly, as well.

Most dermatologists agree that it’s never too early to start taking care of your skin. Right from your 30s, you can start including products in your regimen that are targeted to more mature audiences. But remember, skincare products can’t do all the grunt work. Just like when you’re trying to achieve glass skin, ensuring a youthful and nourished look begins with a healthy lifestyle. 

What factors cause the skin to age prematurely?

Dr Radmila Lukian, a dermatologist and anti-ageing skin specialist, and founder of Lucia Clinic, Dubai, shared some lifestyle factors to keep in mind: “Smoking accelerates the ageing process by reducing blood flow to the skin, depleting it of oxygen and nutrients. A poor diet lacking essential nutrients, antioxidants, and healthy fats can also negatively impact the skin's health and contribute to premature ageing.” Additionally, factors like chronic stress, insufficient sleep, and a sedentary lifestyle can all have an adverse effect.

Apart from your lifestyle, the environment you’re in plays a role as well. Dr Lukian added: “Excessive exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun leads to the breakdown of collagen and elastin fibers, resulting in wrinkles, fine lines, and sunspots.” Pollution, harsh weather conditions, and exposure to toxins can also cause oxidative stress and accelerate skin ageing.

The right skincare, then, is essential to mitigating all these factors and helping your skin cope and recover.

What kind of skincare regimen do I need, in order to prioritise anti-aging?

The key is to follow a multi-step approach, according to Dr Lukian. The steps may vary, depending on an individual’s needs and preferences, but the main aspects remain standard across the board: cleansing, exfoliation, serums and treatment products, moisturising, and sun protection.

She explained: “Start with a gentle cleanser suitable for your skin type, to remove dirt, oil, and impurities without stripping the skin's natural moisture. Regular exfoliation helps remove dead skin cells and promote cellular turnover. Serums containing ingredients like vitamin C, retinol, hyaluronic acid, or peptides can target specific concerns such as fine lines and uneven skin tone. A moisturiser suitable for your skin type provides hydration and nourishment. Lastly, apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30 every day to protect against harmful UV rays.” 

When you’re considering anti-ageing products, keep an eye out for vital ingredients that make all the difference. Dr Lukian shared some that are worth looking for:

  • Retinol: A derivative of vitamin A, is known for reducing wrinkles, improving skin texture, and promoting collagen production.
  • Vitamin C: This is an antioxidant that brightens the skin, evens out skin tone, and stimulates collagen synthesis.
  • Hyaluronic acid: A hydrating ingredient that plumps the skin and reduces the appearance of fine lines.
  • Peptides: These amino acid chains support collagen production and improve skin firmness and elasticity.
  • Niacinamide: Also known as vitamin B3, it enhances the skin's barrier function, improves texture, and reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Be cautious when you’re using new products for the first time, though, as some ingredients, like actives, can trigger flare-ups. Dr Lukian added: “It's important to remember that everyone's skin is unique, and it's advisable to patch test new products and be mindful of any adverse reactions. Avoiding potential irritants and allergens is crucial, so consult with a dermatologist or skincare professional who can help identify suitable options.”

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We curated a list of the best anti-ageing skincare products you can buy, based on our expert’s recommendations and highly-rated reviews on Amazon. Buy the one that suits you best - many are available at a discount right now thanks to Beauty Week - with Prime, for free, fast delivery.

1. Best Cleanser: PCA Skin Gentle Lactic Acid Facial Cleanser 

As one of Dr Lukian’s top picks, PCA Skin’s facial cleanser is suitable for all skin types. Formulated with soothing ingredients like lactic acid, aloe vera, willow bark extract, and antioxidants, the cleanser is soothing and gentle. It successfully hydrates and exfoliates the skin while it removes impurities. Many reviewers say they’ve returned to buy the product over and over again, since it’s one of the few facial cleansers out there that doesn’t irritate the skin, or leave it feeling dry after exfoliation. The cleanser is completely free from synthetic dyes, fragrances and paraben.

2. Best Exfoliant: M.A.D. Skincare Anti-Aging Youth Transformation Exfoliating Serum 10% AHA 

Packed with powerful exfoliant AHAs (alpha hydroxy acid) – 5 per cent glycolic acid and 5 per cent multi fruit acids – M.A.D Skincare’s exfoliating serum aims to minimise fine lines and wrinkles. The serum also includes peptides to help stimulate collagen production, which restores elasticity and provides a softer texture to ageing skin. Reviewers say they’ve noticed their pores shrinking, and their skin smoothening out, within just four or five nights of use. If your face feels a little sticky after application, don’t worry, it’s part of the process. The sensation fades after a few minutes, resulting in hydrated, nourished skin. The serum is paraben-, chemical-, and colourant-free.

3. Best Night Serum: Drunk Elephant T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Night Serum 

Acting as a serum and an exfoliant, this night serum by Drunk Elephant is loved by both teens and women with mature skin. Its glycolic acid, along with other AHAs, sloughs off dead cells and helps unclog teen pores, while the BHA (beta hydroxy acid) penetrates deep into the skin to exfoliate, and boosts cell turnover in older applicants. Reviewers rave about how the appearance of their skin tone has improved dramatically, after using this product, with a reduction in fine lines, wrinkles and pores.

4. Best Facial Treatment: PCA Skin Vitamin B3 Brightening Face Serum 

Just like other systems in our body experience wear and tear as we age, our skin too, can become thinner and drier, and develop discolouration. PCA Skin’s brightening face serum targets redness, glycation-related skin yellowing, and discolouration with its skin-lightening formula. While niacinamide improves uneven skin tone and minimises enlarged pores, plankton extract reduces patchiness and discolouration, and glycerin helps hydrate and moisturise the skin. The product also includes mulberry, green tea and oligopeptide-51 to decrease hyperpigmentation. Dr Lukian recommends this facial serum, which works for all skin types, and is free of potential irritants, like synthetic dyes, fragrances and paraben.

5. Best Moisturiser: Sesderma Reti-Age Facial Cream Moisturiser 

This luxurious and creamy moisturiser by Sesderma is ideal for mature skin, since it focuses on all the issues that crop up with ageing skin. Three forms of retinol – retinol, retinyl and retinaldehyde – target wrinkles and help minimise the appearance of fine lines. The moisturiser strengthens fragile skin texture and softens facial contours. It also contains peptides that work as humectants, bringing water to the upper layer of the skin to improve its hydration and bring a youthful radiance to the face. Be cautious when applying the moisturiser for the first time, however, since retinols can cause irritation for some skin types.

6. Best Moisturiser for Sensitive Skin: PCA ReBalance Daily Moisturiser 

If you’ve had a difficult experience finding a facial moisturiser that suits your skin type, PCA’s ReBalance may do the trick. This anti-ageing facial cream is lightweight, and ideal for sensitive skin, since it has plenty of calming ingredients. Formulated with seed oils from borage and evening primrose plants to soothe the skin, along with niacinamide for hydration, and the antioxidant vitamin E to strengthen and protect the skin’s barrier, it can be used twice a day for optimal results.

7. Best Sunscreen: Heliocare 360° Oil-Free Gel (SPF 50, PA++++) 

Heliocare 360° was our top pick in 2023 for outdoor exercise, and Dr Lukian confirms that it’s one of the best sun protection products for ageing skin, as well. The oil-free gel grants you protection against ultraviolet-A (UVA), ultraviolet-B (UVB), infrared and visible light, and is even suitable to use on oily and acne-prone skin. Reviewers say the noncomedogenic formula leaves no white cast or shine after application – it’s practically invisible. Made with repairing and antioxidant active ingredients, it neutralises and repairs sun damage. End your skincare regimen with this sunscreen to face sunny days without fear of acquiring dark spots or skin damage.

Our recommendations are independently chosen by Gulf News editors. If you decide to shop through links on our website, we may earn an affiliate commission, as we are part of Amazon Services LLC Associates Program.