Healthier skin is better skin, but aging skin, which can still be healthy, with its wrinkles, sagging, and bagging is what drives many patients to my office. Whether one is 35 or 85, or anything in between, the public’s desire to look youthful and younger has made the cosmetic arena a booming, multi-billion-dollar industry. Over the last 20 years, the number of noninvasive cosmetic treatments performed has increased by over 500%! From Botox, dermal fillers like Juvederm, lasers, microneedling, and most recently PRP (Platelet Rick Plasma), the noninvasive treatment options are not only mind-boggling and infinite, but also incredibly effective. However, did you know that sometimes, a quick tweak with as simple as a makeup brush or a teeth-whitening strip can make all the difference in the world to bring back your youthful glow? Call it a slight-of-hand or an illusion of sorts, but these beauty tricks of the trade can truly transform one’s look from dull-and-drab to head-turning radiance. And of course, when you look good, you will always feel good, too.
Here are my Top Ten Easy Fixes to Looking Instantly Younger.
- Moisturize your skin. Your skin can quickly get dry and dull, because it is always exposed to the elements and reflects what’s going on inside your body. This is especially true during the winter months, so take the extra step right after cleansing and prep your skin with a nurturing layer of moisturizer. The moisturizers of today may seem rather simple, but they are no longer your grandmother’s cold cream or pink beauty fluid. Today’s facial moisturizers can be powerhouses packed with extra goodies like antioxidants, peptides, and sunscreens. Plus, moisturizing makes your wrinkles less noticeable and allows your makeup to go on more evenly and effectively across your skin. And while you’re at it, hydrate from inside out as well. Insensible water loss through your skin and into your environment can leave your skin dry and lifeless, so tank up and don’t forget to drink your water.
- Camouflage with a bit of makeup because a little foundation goes a long way. Foundation may not be your cup of tea, but today’s cosmetic market has so many smart options, from mineral foundation to liquid foundation, that most women can find a perfect match for their skin type and their lifestyle. A soft sweep of foundation can hide and soften a myriad of aging sins like brown spots, uneven pigmentation, and fine lines. And don’t forget a little concealer under the eyes and a light dusting of a coral or apricot blush, which is very flattering for every skin tone, can make a huge difference. If you’re really ambitious, an under-layer of illuminating primer or a sweep of highlighter can give you that inner, youthful glow that you have been wanting all along.
- Accentuate your eyelashes. You have heard the adage about the eyes being the window to the soul. Help make that window unforgettable by framing them with some lustrous, thick, dark lashes. Since our lashes get a little paltry as we age, help them regain their full status by curling them and applying a sweep of sultry, black mascara to make them long and radiant.
- Groom and accentuate your eyebrows. Often ignored, our eyebrows also get sparse and unruly as we age, so they need a little help as well. Get them professionally groomed once in a while, so that you can maintain in between visits with some DIY plucking. Also, although it takes a little practice, fill thin areas out with an eyebrow pencil or brow gel. It is truly well worth the effort. Think of it as more wonderful framing for your gorgeous eyes.
- Pink up your pout. Although Hollywood has made red, hot lipstick a siren staple, the more anti-aging option is a pinker pout. Our lips lose volume as we age (doesn’t everything?), and putting a darker lip color can make them look even thinner. Choose a lip color that is moisturizing and a bit glossy in more of a pink or nude shade, closer to your own natural lip color. Light will better reflect off them, giving the illusion of fuller, plumper lips. Plus, the moisturizing benefits of a glossier formula will diminish any lines or dryness on the surface of your pout, too.
- Update your hairstyle with a great cut and color. Let’s face it. Gray or white hair on the pate, especially as it thins, really does age you. Coloring your hair not only gives you a youthful lift, but it also gives each hair shaft some volume as the cuticle gets penetrated by the dye. Add some gentle bangs and you have some real camo going for your forehead wrinkles. Remember that, as a rule of thumb, if your hair is naturally dark, then going a shade lighter is very rejuvenating. And the opposite is true for natural blondes. Go a shade darker for a youthful lift.
- Get a great manicure. Your hands really show your age, too, so getting a beautiful manicure is like adding a little bling to your fingertips. I have to admit that I am not good in this manicure arena, but I wish I cared more about my fingernails. And don’t forget to moisturize the hands. Hydrating the skin on your hands shaves off years here, too.
- Make your pearly whites whiter. We can all admit that white teeth are really beautiful and when framed in a warm, radiant smile, the entire face lights up. There are so many easy options to gradually whiten your teeth, from whitening strips, whitening toothpaste, DIY whitening systems, and treatments in your dentist’s office, that your teeth can get real, effective attention relatively inexpensively. While you’re at it, don’t forget to floss your teeth as well. Keeping your gums healthy means you’ll be able to keep your pearlier whites in your gums for a long, long time.
- Take care of your décolleté. Our chests are completely ignored most of the time, so they take a lifetime of real beating from fun, sun, and neglect. Not only are these areas always exposed, but they also rarely ever get protected from the elements. Even a little attention to your décolleté will bring amazing benefits. Moisturize daily. Apply anti-aging serums and creams made for this area. And protect it from the sun with sunscreen. No matter how youthful your face is, your neglected, leathery décolleté will be a dead giveaway of your real age.
- Get more sleep every night. Good rest is probably the most rejuvenating of all instant fixes. Not only are you mentally more able to tackle the day, but the sagging and bagging in and around your face and eyes are less pronounced. Effective sleep allows the body to rejuvenate, regenerate, and reverse oxidative damage incurred during the day. You have more mental clarity, more positive emotions, and more emotional reserve to handle stressors of daily life. Plus, studies have shown consistently good sleep on a regular basis increases longevity. And living longer and healthier is always a plus, since let’s face it, we can’t stop the aging process anyway no matter how young we look.
Happy, healthy skin!
–Dr. HTop Ten Easy Fixes to Looking Instantly Younger