Now that we’re well into 2013, it’s time to take stock of your resolutions and see what worked and what still needs a little tweaking. It’s also a perfect time to reevaluate your skin, now that the holidays are nothing but a dim memory. If your skin is looking a little uninspired, dull, dry, or lackluster lately, have no fear. There is a mountain of new and time-tested anti-aging products to try, appearing everywhere from drugstore shelves to department store counters and piled high in the windows of beauty retailers. We just can’t get enough of the promise of reversing fine lines and wrinkles, obliterating sun damage, and lifting our saggy bits, can we? But how do you know what works and what is just another me-too cream?
Look for products that contain the ingredients actually proven to produce noticeable improvements in all signs of aging.
One of the most tried and true age reversers, retinol is an over-the-counter cousin of the prescription only Retin-A®. Both are derivatives of vitamin A and work to reduce lines, wrinkles, and unwanted pigmentation. Retinol stimulates cell activity and the production of collagen, and helps to renew and exfoliate the skin. It appears in a variety of beauty products at various strengths. When using products with a higher percentage of retinol, it is best to build up tolerance by slowly increasing the number of days you apply the treatment.
ZO® Skin Health Ommerse Daily Renewal Crème ($95) – Much more than a hydrator, this functional moisturizer is packed with retinol, antioxidants, and soothing agents to repair the skin barrier and reverse signs of aging. The retinol works to decrease the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, even skin tone and increase epidermal thickness. Use daily as part of your ZO Skin Health anti-aging regimen. Described as a “functional moisturizer,” this cream goes way beyond mere hydration.
SkinCeuticals® Retinol Refining Night Creams ($54 – $59)– Available in two strengths—0.5% and 1.0%—these creams give you control over the intensity of your treatment. Both increase the rate of healthy skin turnover and collagen production to reduce fine lines, wrinkles, enlarged pores, brown spots, and even acne. If your skin is sensitive, try the 0.5% version first. The 1.0 Maximum Strength version could cause redness and flaking, which will subside as you get used to the product.
You might have read a lot about hyaluronic acid as the key ingredient in injectable fillers like Juvederm® and Restylane®. It also works wonders as a topical ingredient, adding moisture and suppleness to skin and reducing flaking in dry skin. Naturally occurring in our body tissue, hyaluronic acid has no known reactions. It’s included in many skincare products because of its powerful hydrating and plumping benefits.
NeoStrata Exuviance AGE REVERSE Hydrafirm ($72) – This luxurious cream’s unique combination of AGE REVERSE ingredients targets all visible signs of aging—poor texture, discoloration, loss of firmness and wrinkles—and replenishes optimal hydration levels to dramatically transform skin. Hyaluronic acid attracts moisture and instantly quenches dryness. Available nationwide in March 2013.
Natura Bisse The Cure Sheer Cream ($170) – This daily SPF 20 moisturizer give you double benefits—it boosts hydration and reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles—and features “self-adapting color technology,” which provides light, sheer color that works with all skin tones. You can use it in place of a foundation and hydrate and smooth your skin at the same time.
Growth factors, along with stem cells, are some of the most buzzed about and promising ingredients to hit the cosmeceutical market in a long while. They are inspired by the natural growth factors created by the cells of the dermis and epidermis. A type of protein, growth factors play an important role in promoting healthy tissue repair, forming new collagen and elastin, and working with other proteins to mend injuries. Products that contain growth factors can even out skin tone, enhance elasticity, smooth skin, and reduce lines and wrinkles.
Regenica Skin ($150 – $175) – A three-product line by Suneva Medical, Inc. Regnica is powered by growth factor technology that was inspired by the uncanny ability that embryos have to heal. The Regenica technology tries to set up similar conditions in the skin. The lineup features Advanced RejuvenationDay Repair SPF 15, Advanced Rejuvenation Overnight Repair, and Facial Rejuvenation Complex Post Procedure ($150). Day Repair and Night Repair fight signs of aging like fine lines, wrinkles, irregular pigmentation, and roughness. Post Procedure is formulated to speed up recovery after a facial laser treatment.
NeoCutis Bio Cream ($135) – NeoCutis offers a full line of anti-aging treatments that are formulated with PSP®, a nourishing protein blend including human growth factors for state-of-the-art skin revitalization. A nightly treatment, Bio Cream is clinically proven to help reduce the appearance of facial wrinkles after two months of daily use. It’s also great for use on sensitive skin and to soothe skin after a cosmetic or dermatologic procedure.
Derived from soybeans, soy isoflavones are included in skincare products for good reason—they brighten the skin, decrease redness, boost collagen production, and improve skin tone. They are particularly useful in skincare formulated for menopausal women, because as anti-oxidants and phytoestrogens (though very weak ones), they can help counteract the effect of decreased estrogen on the skin. Soy Isoflavones prevent melanin pigments from adhering to skin cells, so they also are great in skin brighteners.
Lancôme Absolue Premium BX SPF 15 ($155) – Lancôme was one of the first company’s to address the effects of hormonal changes on women’s skin with its Absolue line. Formulated with soy, in addition to wild yam, sea algae, and barley, this daytime cream replenishes lost moisture, enhances elasticity, and firms skin. It aims to plump up the skin from within and help it regain density and moisture.
Dermalogica Age Smart Super Rich Repair ($78) – The soy isoflavones in this day and night cream fight free radicals and encourage hyaluronic acid synthesis. Targeting dry, aging skin, Age Smart encourages the production of youthful collagen to help skin become stronger and firmer. It’s also an exceptional moisturizer and will help smooth the appearance of fine