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Women spend roughly $3,700 per year on their appearance. That equals out to over $300 per month. The anti-aging industry is a beast, expected to reach $330 billion dollars by the year 2021.

The numbers don’t lie: people care a lot about their appearance and about keeping their skin in greatest shape possible.

One of the most purchased items are anti-aging products, but with thousands available on the market sometimes it’s impossible to know which ones are worth it.

We’ve smoothed out the hard work for you. Let’s take a look at our top picks for maintaining that youthful appearance.

What Causes Aging Skin?

As we age, our cells deteriorate. Cells are always diving to repair the damage done to them by outside influences. Aging is built into our genetics, and we have a ”clock” inside us called a telomere.

A telomere is the end of a chromosome. When that chromosome shortens (due to the constant division of the cells), our cells begin breaking down and the aging process begins.

Several factors besides genetics contribute to skin aging, including the environment, lifestyle habits like diet and smoking, and excessive sun exposure.

Signs of aging skin are:

  • wrinkles
  • sagging
  • loss of elasticity
  • lines
  • crows feet
  • dark spots
  • dull skin tone

There could be a variety of other signs, but these are the most common.

How do Anti-Aging Creams Work?

Anti-aging creams (or serums) work to improve elasticity and smooth fine lines and wrinkles in the skin. This is accomplished through a combination of ingredients in the form of a cream, serum, or lotion. Serums have a light consistency, while creams are heavier or thicker.

Choosing between a serum or cream is a personal one often dependent on your skin type.

What to Look for in an Anti-Aging Cream

While each anti-aging product claims to be the best available, there are several ingredients that are shown to actually produce younger looking skin.

TAM-818: Stands for Telomerase Activating Molecule, which can slow or reverse the aging process.

Retinol: A popular ingredient in anti-wrinkle products, retinol comes from vitamin A and is an antioxidant. The purpose of an antioxidant is to combat free radicals.

Coenzyme Q10: Commonly referred to as COQ10, this offers protection from the sun and fades fine lines and wrinkles

Vitamin C: Vitamin C is not just found in orange juice! This antioxidant also protects the skin from sun damage as well as brightens.  

Hydroxy acids: Alpha hydroxy acids and beta hydroxy acids work as exfoliants, stimulating collagen production and sloughing off dead skin layers.

Peptides: Peptides are used to treat wounds and stretch marks and reduce wrinkles

Niacinamide: This ingredient works to keep skin moisturized and boost elasticity.

Extracts: Green tea and grapeseed oil extract are both antioxidants and anti-inflammatories, meaning they reduce redness and inflammation in the skin.

When to Begin Using an Anti-Aging Cream

You might be tempted to buy anti-aging cream at the first sign of wrinkles, but the jury is still out on the appropriate time to incorporate anti-aging products into your skin routine. Some experts say early teens or 20s, some say it’s unnecessary at this young age, encouraging prevention instead.

Consult with your dermatologist if you’re concerned about the health of your skin to hear their recommendation.

Skin Type

Finding the right anti-aging product that works properly with your skin type is recommended. Most products label if they’re made for a certain skin type, but if not, choose one that fits your type.

There are four basic skin types.

Dry Skin: For dry skin, look for heavier products, like creams, to keep the skin adequately moisturized.

Combination Skin: Combination skin is skin that’s oily in areas and dry in others. Choose a serum for combination skin, because it’s lighter. Look for one that’s noncomedogenic to avoid clogged pores.

Oily Skin: Oily skin needs a lighter product like a serum or lotion to work well, preferably water-based.

Normal Skin: Most likely any cream, lotion, or serum will do!

Types of Anti-Aging Products

It’s easy to get confused when choosing an anti-aging product because the market is swimming with them. Here’s a breakdown of the different kinds.

Anti-Aging Face Cream

Facial cream acts as a moisturizer and fights wrinkles. This gets applied in the morning after washing your face. They attack all forms of aging like fine lines, wrinkles, elasticity, dullness and so on.

Anti-Aging Eye Cream

The discussion surrounding eye cream is controversial; some believe it’s beneficial, others do not, claiming that if you’re using a moisturizer, there’s no need for an eye cream.

Whatever route you decide, eye cream application typically happens twice, once in the morning and once at night, but it’s best to follow the directions on the label.

Wrinkle Cream

Wrinkle cream differs from anti-aging facial cream in that it only targets wrinkles.

Night Cream

At night, your skin regenerates along with a number of other things. Giving it a night cream helps fight things like dryness and encourages elasticity.

Sunscreen

Ask any skin care professional and they’ll agree: the number one action to take to prevent early aging is to wear sunscreen. The American Academy of Dermatology suggests that sunscreen is necessary for everyone.

Though the sun is vital for the health of our planet and our bodies (think Vitamin D), its UV rays can damage our skin quickly, potentially causing cancer, if there’s no protection. Sunscreen needs to be applied every day.

Read The Clinical Trials And Reviews

Because the market is saturated with anti-aging creams and lotions, many people will try to capitalize on it by creating products that do not work, though claiming that they do.

Though everything sounds great on paper you’ll need to do some research and read the clinical trials before you consider purchasing an anti-aging cream. If the company does not release nor state that their products have been tested, try another product.

Ask questions to their customer service and read reviews. Reading the reviews of the product gives you a front row seat to real customers experiences, both positive and negative.

Use Only One Cream at A Time

Once you find an anti-aging product you love, stick with it until you think it’s stopped working. Using multiple products is counterproductive, as the ingredients can cancel each other out.

Age Gracefully

Aging is guaranteed, but that doesn’t mean your skin has to follow. It’s possible to maintain supple, smooth skin well beyond your youth. If you’re looking for an anti-aging solution that’s backed up by clinical studies, visit our page to learn more.