A few weeks ago I attended an open house at one of the more prominent spas and plastic surgeons in the city to find the best skin care products available on the market today. Unfortunately years of squinting, tanning beds, and skimping on sunscreen has led to more skin damage than I would like to admit. For the most part I feel like I’m a typical guy. I skip sunscreen because it takes too long to put on, I don’t use lotion unless my skin is dry and cracked, and I love being outdoors. In fact, my idea of a perfect summer day would be playing softball for hours on end before relaxing in the lake. All underneath the sun of course. (Did I mention that I never wore sunscreen?)
But you know several things I rarely skipped? Breakfasts, workouts, fish oil supplements, leg day … I didn’t skip any of these because I was committed to building a stronger, fitter, and healthier body. My ultimate vision has always been to been to become that 50 year old we’ve all seen on the beach; turning heads not just because of their looks, but because their body exemplifies power, grit, determination, and discipline. I want to be inspiring.
Unfortunately I failed to realize that taking care of my skin was part of this journey. I avoided cigarettes like the plague and ran out under the sun day after day completely unprotected. REAL SMART! Someone should have told me long ago that my skin was an organ … then maybe I would have added lotions and sunscreen to my supplement routine. [Discover the Top 7 Foods for Healthy Looking Skin]
So what can I do now?
Well, what else can I do except practice what I preach? I’ve got to start taking action to correct my past mistakes. I tell my clients every single day that we can’t control what we’ve done in the past, we can only control our actions from this point forward. And so that’s what I’ll say to you! Start visiting the dermatologist regularly (at least once a year) and make daily lotions and sunscreen part of your budget! Ultimately, you’ll probably want to talk to your doctor about creating an appropriate skin care regimen; however, I’ve done a lot of the research for you! Here’s what I found out while sticking out like a sore thumb and roaming around the spa …
THE BIG 5: The Best Skin Care Products for Anti-Aging
Growth factors are a peptide enriched protein and actually helps our bodies stimulate more collagen (which gives our skin strength and elasticity) and elastin (which helps our skin return to its original position after being stretched or poked). They also contribute to the repair of damaged skin and are a must-have in any anti-aging skincare regimen. If you are looking to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while improving the appearance of age spots, skin texture, and elasticity then this product is for you!
(Apply in the AM, immediately after applying hyaluronic acid (See Below))
Hyaluronic acid helps your skin hold moisture, giving you a full and youthful look. No matter what your skin type (extremely dry to extremely oily) everyone can benefit from using hyaluronic acid. Using a topical HA will increase your skin’s elasticity and give it a hydration boost. The extra moisture it locks in will give your skin a more youthful appearance and radiant glow.
My Best Skin Care Pick: SkinMedica HA5 or Revision Hydrating Serum
(Apply in the AM, immediately after washing your face or stepping out of the shower)
Antioxidants are need to fight against damage that is caused by free radicals, substances that are by-products of many internal and external processes (such as the breakdown of food). They are absolutely essential to good health and also improve the appearance of your skin. By including them in your skincare regimen you can actually slow down or even prevent the effects of free radicals [Eat this food to destroy free radicals and improve your immune system] . This helps keep your skin cells healthy and gives you a fresh look each day.
My Best Skin Care Pick: SkinMedica Recovery Complex
(Apply in the AM, immediately after applying hyaluronic acid (See Above))
Retinol is another way to combat aging. It is a vitamin A derivative and can help prevent fine lines and wrinkles. More importantly it reduces poor size and promotes cellular turnover, allowing you to shed dead skin cells that can accumulate on the skins surface. A word of caution, retinol is a product that you must build up a tolerance to use. It can result in redness, dryness, and irritation. I recommend starting with the 0.5 version first before moving to 1.0.
My Best Skin Care Pick: SkinMedica Retinol Complex or ZO Brightenex (Available from Physician Only)
(Apply after washing your face, immediately before bed)
Well, what can I say? This product probably should have been mentioned first. It is an absolutely essential skin care product that helps block ultraviolet rays. Sunlight is the main source of UV radiation and it can severely damage the skin. Sunscreen should be used multiple times throughout the day to help protect the skin from damage, premature aging, and cancer.
My Best Skin Care Pick: SkinMedica Total Defense + Repair
(Apply after growth factors and antioxidants and/or any time you will be out in the sun)
So You’ve Got Some Products … Now What?
Having the best skin care products sitting on your shelf isn’t enough. You have to actually use them! To start, I recommend using one product at a time in order to see how your skin will react. If you like the product, keep it as part of your routine and test another one, working your way down the list as you see fit. As for me, I use them all!
As a last ditch effort to prevent wrinkles you can also try Botox injections … but that’s a topic for another post.