When it comes to anti-aging products, I am a marketers dream.
Even before I turned 50, you could literally slap the word anti-aging on a product – any product – and I would buy it. Skin care. Make up. Sun screen. Food products. Collagen drinks. Heck, I’d even buy a gold-plated bath tub if it promised to turn back the hands of time. Does any of this stuff really work? I definitely need to decipher all these anti aging skin care myths before I’m living in my gold bath tub, under a bridge.
Do I really want to slather my mature skin in products containing bird excrement to help me look younger? Did I make a mistake by not eating my own placenta after my son’s birth? Is that why I have aging skin?
Marketers tell stories every day to get us to buy their products. The world of anti aging skin care is full of myths and folklore and it’s difficult to know what we really need to help us look younger. Because let’s be honest, as women in our 50s, we are all trying to look younger.
Debunking anti aging skin care myths
We’ve done a little research. We’ve talked to some dermatologists. And now we’re breaking down some of the myths to help you better understand how to take care of your mature skin. Here are 10 myths about anti aging that you need to stop believing.
Myth 1: You become less attractive as you age
It’s a commonly held misconception that as you age, your physical beauty fades.
The idea that women over 50 are no longer vibrant, beautiful or desirable is a misconception that has been perpetuated by the media and marketing machines. How else will they get us to keep buying expensive anti aging products?
The truth is that our fine lines and wrinkles don’t make us any less attractive — in fact, it just adds to our beauty! While some women embrace these symbols as a sign of aging gracefully, others work to limit the signs they don’t want to show. And both totally acceptable! You do you, girl.
Beauty is more than skin deep and a woman’s true beauty only shines even brighter with every passing year. So to all the women out there who’ve been told otherwise; never fear. Although I see a different face in the mirror today than I did when I was 20, I actually feel more attractive, beautiful and desirable, in my ‘old’ age.
Myth 2: Wrinkles are the first sign of aging
Contrary to popular belief, wrinkles are not always the first sign of aging. When you look in the mirror one day and suddenly see dark circles under your eyes, or fine lines and laugh lines where there used to be smoothness, it can come as quite a shock.
The signs start out subtle, small evidence that the years are slipping by faster than we’d like. I was still in my 20s when I started to notice my bunny nose and crow’s feet. When I mentioned it to my dad, he was quick to confirm that I was indeed looking tired and a little old and that I should invest in a good eye cream. Gee, thanks Dad.
The reason for this change in skin appearance has to do with decrease in skin cell turnover and natural oils. Without these two important components our skin can start to look dull and tired. Add to this a decline in collagen production as we age and quickly our beloved skin is not only showing a few subtle signs of aging, we’ve got full blown wrinkles.
Myth 3: You only need to wear sunscreen on sunny days
Long gone are the days when we would lay on a sheet of aluminum foil, our bodies slathered in tanning oil. It’s hard to believe that we grew up in a time when getting burnt at the beach was ok. By tomorrow you were going to have a deep, dark, golden tan. Got to love the 80s!
Today we know more about the harmful effects of the sun. When we know better, we do better. So now, instead of baking in the sun, we slather our bodies in sunscreen and search out a tiny patch of shade to hide beneath.
While it may seem counter intuitive to slather on sunscreen on cloudy days, trust us: your skin needs protection from harmful UV rays every single day. All year ’round.
Sunscreen is important not only to protect our mature skin from sun damage, but more importantly to protect us from skin cancer. Did you know that about 90% of skin cancers are caused by UV rays? Another important fact is that one in every three cancers diagnosed worldwide is skin cancer and it can be deadly.
So protect you and your mature skin. Make sure you wear at least SPF 30 sunscreen. Invest in a good quality one and commit to using it regularly. Bonus points for reapplying often. Think you look better with a healthy glow? This is easily accomplished with a great bronzer.
Myth 4: Makeup with SPF is the same as sunscreen
Today almost every product we put on our faces, promises to provide SPF protection from the sun. And many of us believe that makeup with SPF is an appropriate substitute for sunscreen. That’s totally a myth!
While moisturizing formulas and lightweight creams can be great to even out skin tone, they don’t carry many of the protective benefits that a reliable sunscreen has. Makeup only contains a fraction of the SPF protection found in sunscreens, and its moisturizing formula is designed to make your face look good — not safe.
Do yourself a favor and invest in a lightweight sun cream or spray with an SPF of 30 or higher— no matter the season. This will help keep your skin looking even-toned, glowing and healthy while also maintaining the integrity of your skin barrier.
Myth 5: The more water you drink the better
While we’ve all heard about the benefits of drinking lots of water every day to improve the quality of our skin, skincare experts have debunked the myth – the more water you drink the better.
Sadly, water isn’t going to give you a Cameron Diaz glow overnight .
Don’t get me wrong, water is important. Proper hydration helps flush out toxins and keep our body’s organs functioning properly and help keep our pores clear. Water can support glowing skin from the inside out. Add a little lemon to give your liver some extra love. But drinking water, no matter how much, doesn’t miraculously erase wrinkles, improve it’s texture or plump up your skin unless you’re severely dehydrated.
You should drink enough water so you feel adequately hydrated throughout the day, but don’t overboard! To truly see changes in your skin tone, look for topical remedies like lotions and cleansers that contain ingredients that help brighten skin tone and improve overall texture.
Myth 6: Anti aging products can completely reverse aging
Let’s get real for a minute ladies. The media is not doing us any favours, and marketers are preying on our insecurities and vanity to sell us expensive products that promise to turn back the hands of time. To help us stay young forever.
There are thousands of anti aging skin care products out there. Ones that will improve our skin’s firmness. Reduce the appearance of age spots or dark circles. Remove the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Ones for oily skin, sensitive or dry skin. You name the mature skin ‘issue’ and there’s a product for it.
And they’re all promising a face lift in a bottle.
While a quality anti-aging products can help improve the texture and appearance of your skin, it cannot actually stop the aging process above and beyond what nature has already planned for you.
Active ingredients in anti aging products can help your skin produce more collagen, which helps fill in creases on your face and give skin an overall smoother look. They can stimulate your skin cells to improve the overall texture and tone. They can also improve hydration at the skins’s surface which brightens skin and increases its luminosity.
But at the end of the day, while they can certainly help diminish signs of aging, they cannot completely reverse them, making any sort of minor improvements most likely just temporary ones.
Myth 7: Collagen supplements will make you look younger
We’ve been hearing for years that taking collagen supplements will make you look younger. It supports healthy skin, longer hair and stronger nails. And if you take collagen every single day (it’s not going to hurt you if you do) you definitely will notice improvements in your skin, hair and nails.
Unfortunately, it’s not a magic pill to reverse signs of ageing. This magic pill does not exist.
If you want to boost collagen production and keep skin healthy, start with a healthy diet. Studies show that eating foods with vitamin C and amino acids can help your body make more hyaluronic acid. We need hyaluronic acid for healthy skin – it helps us produce collagen. We naturally produce hyaluronic acid, but like so many things, we produce less of it as we get older.
Add in regular exercise. It helps reduce stress levels which is important for skin health. Exercise also boosts blood circulation which helps produce new collagen!
Myth 8: Chemical peels are dangerous
Have you ever heard of chemical peels, but were too scared to try them? Heard they might actually be dangerous? Well, this is simply not true!
In fact, regular chemical peels can do wonders for your skin texture and brightens skin tone. These peels use gentle acids, such as alpha hydroxy or beta hydroxy, to exfoliate dead skin cells and speed up cell turnover.
Chemical peels are actually a great addition to anyone’s skin care routine when done correctly. And they are completely customizable based on the results you’re looking for.A board certified dermatologist can tailor fit one for your needs.
So don’t be afraid. It’s goodbye dull skin and hello beautiful and vibrant complexion! Your face will thank you for it.
Myth 9: Expensive products are more effective
Have you heard the myth that expensive products are more effective? Well, let’s debunk this immediately!
High prices are often justified through luxury marketing and packaging, they don’t necessarily guarantee better results. Sure, luxury brands have their place in the beauty industry. And they definitely make great gifts. But a high price tag doesn’t necessarily mean a more effective product. There are many great-value options right at your local pharmacy.
Take vitamin C serums for example. Online beauty sites boast this active ingredient in a range of expensive versions. But I guarantee there are great options right on the Shoppers Drugmart shelves that won’t cost you $300/bottle.
Finding great, reliable products is easy, even for mature skin. Try out different products until you find one that fits into your routine and works wonders for your complexion.
You don’t have to break the bank to look and feel fabulous.
Myth 10: You should see results right away
Who doesn’t want to look younger, FAST?! We all want to believe in the skin care miracles advertisers promise us. I’ve been trying different eye creams since I was 28, hoping every time that the bags and crow’s feet would immediately disappear. Never happened!
The truth is results don’t come overnight—it takes time and consistency. Developing a thorough skin care routine is even more important for those with mature skin. Patience is key, because it often takes 6 – 8 weeks before a new skin care product can start making changes to your skin. Avoid giving up too early and give the product time to truly start working its magic on your face.
Once you start noticing results from your skincare routine, it’s tempting to get lazy. Don’t! Dermatologists agree that consistent use of skin care products is key for maintaining healthy, glowing skin.
A solid skincare routine will show off beautiful skin for years to come!