Do you remember the outfits you wore when you were a teenager? How about when you finished High School and became a young adult? Our fashion choices change as our body does.
Our skin is no different. As we get older, our skin changes. In our late teens and early 20s, our skin is thriving with collagen, giving us that “baby fat” glow. But by our late 20s the collagen production in our skin starts to slow down, and our face becomes more refined, revealing a more mature bone structure.
Products on the market today are predominantly aimed at your 20-40 years olds who are avoiding the inevitable aging process. But for anyone outside of those age brackets, it can be more difficult to navigate a proper regime.
We’ll discuss some of the best ingredients and formulations for each period in your life, and some of the products we recommend.
The Teenage Years
When we’re teenagers, our skin can show some incredibly turbulent behavior, as we maneuver through the ups and downs of adolescence. Many of us as teenagers went through (or are going through) hormonal acne, oily and inflamed skin, and acne scarring, and it can really knock a person's confidence. So using skincare products that are specifically designed to combat these concerns can make a world of difference to a person’s skin, and to their self esteem.
While there are many typical ingredients dermatologists prescribe for acne skin conditions, such as salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, retinol, and sulfur, these can be quite harsh on the skin. Especially when there is inflammation and fresh scarring caused by their acne. What you want to do is treat the acne, while also calming the irritation.
Instead, try looking to nature for a solution. There are an incredible number of naturally-derived ingredients out there that have been used for centuries to treat acne and its byproducts. Here are some of our top picks:
Holy Basil: this is a herb used in Ayurveda tradition, and is also widely used in modern skincare products due to its efficacy. It has natural microbial and antibacterial properties, and it reduces inflammation and pigmentation caused by acne.
Find it in M.S.Skincare’s Mantra Skin Perfecting Cleanser. Cleanse your face morning and night, and follow with the rest of your regime.
Neem: another Ayurveda herb used in many traditional remedies is neem. This potent extract has a whole host of amazing properties, including bacteria-inhibiting, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antifungal and antiviral properties.
Find it in Earthwise Beauty’s Catharsis Face Mask. Use this mask twice a week after cleansing.
Hibiscus: known as a natural source of alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs), hibiscus helps to exfoliate skin, control oil and sebum, and help with congested pores.
Find it in Honua Skincare’s Hawaiian Beauty Water. Using a reusable cotton swab, apply to the entire face, and let it dry before the next steps.
Ginseng: effective as a topical ingredient, but also as a supplement in your diet, studies have shown that ginseng containing panaxynol and panaxydol can effectively control the symptoms of acne.
Find it in Earth Harbor’s Nebula Adaptogen Clarity Ampoule. Add 2-3 drops to dry skin, avoiding the eye area.
Aloe: you would have seen aloe being used in things like after-sun lotions. But aloe is also extremely effective in helping with reducing acne, fading scarring, and soothing irritation due to its antibacterial properties. It also contains anthraquinone, an ingredient that helps with skin renewal.
Find it in Honua Skincare’s Malu Day Cream SPF30. Apply 2-3 pumps to the face. SPF is extremely important to stop the sun from turning acne scars into darker spots.
The Roaring 20s
We wanted freedom as teenagers, but couldn’t have it all because, well, we were still kids. So our 20s are really the years where we claim our independence. The years where we learn how to “adult”; and also the time when our skin looks amazing without a lot of effort. But don’t let that fool you.
I know you still look fabulous after all those late nights, getting 2 hours sleep, working two jobs, studying full time, sleeping in your makeup, not wearing enough sunscreen in a bid to get a killer tan, and living off a diet of 2-minute noodles—but your skin still needs to be taken care of. Believe it or not, it does catch up with you (speaking from experience).
As mentioned before, our collagen production slows down roughly after the age of 26-30, which means that we’ll start to notice things like fine lines, pigmentation, and more prominent bone structure in our face. So that means between the ages of 20 and 26 it’s a great idea to start a preventative skincare ritual. Here are some ingredients to look for:
Kale: this leafy green is not just a great addition to your diet, but it is packed full of vitamins A, B, C, and K; antioxidants; and phytonutrients, all which help tightens pores, reduce dark circles, promote collagen production, increase cell turnover, prevent free-radical damage, and detoxify the skin.
Find it in Stevie Fox’s Super Kale Angel Face Wash. Just apply to damp skin, massage for one minute, and then rinse off.
Glucomannan: this polysaccharide is found in the konjac plant, and is especially effective at plumping and smoothing the skin cells, helping to minimize signs of aging.
You’ll find it in M.S.Skincare’s Enlighten Retexturizing Glycolic Treatment. Just apply to clean skin, and leave on as a treatment for 1-5 minutes. Use 1-2 times a week.
Cactus Flower: this succulent is effective at hydrating the skin, as well as providing antioxidants to protect the skin from damage.
Find it in Stevie Fox’s Cactus Dewy Fix Face Toner. Apply on dry skin after cleansing.
Green Tea Seed Oil: this potent ingredient fights hyperpigmentation and premature aging while increasing the feeling of elasticity. It also contains numerous anti-aging polyphenol antioxidants.
Find it in Earth Harbor’s Marina Biome Brightening Ampoule. Apply 2-3 drops to the face and neck after toning.
Noni Plant: packed with Vitamins A and C, flavonoids, potassium, and linoleic and amino acids, which are known for improving skin tone and elasticity. Noni is also a rich source of phytonutrients known to boost the skin's natural process of repairing collagen.
Find it in Honua Skincare’s ʻŌlena Beauty Oil. Use it as a last step in your regime to nourish and protect the skin.
Middle-Aged Millennials to Gen X
This is the era where we really start to see more of the damage that has been done in our earlier years. Pigmentation and sun spots appear; scarring becomes more prominent as the collagen in our skin starts to slow down; and fine lines become commonplace around our eyes and forehead. So our skincare regime needs to be taken up a notch—or four.
Ingredients to look for:
Marshmallow root: containing polysaccharides and flavonoids, marshmallow root repairs and encourages cell turnover, making this an incredible anti-aging ingredient.
Find it in Earthwise Beauty’s Marshmallow Face Cleanser. Use it every morning and night.
Fruit Enzymes: these are Nature’s alpha-hydroxy acids that work on the surface of the skins to resurface and minimize fine lines and sun damage, and improve skin’s texture.
Find it in M.S.Skincare’s Jaipur Brightening Enzyme Mask. Use once or twice a week after cleansing.
Red Algae Astaxanthin: a relatively new kid on the block in skincare, red algae astaxanthin is teeming with antioxidants, which are futile to protecting skin from free radical damage and pollution.
Find it in earth Harbor’s Helios Anti-Pollution Youth Ampoule. Press 2-3 drops into clean skin, morning and night.
Sea Buckthorn Berry: this amazing marine fruit contains over 20 minerals, 60 antioxidants, and 12 times the amount of Vitamin C than oranges. Vitamin C helps to brighten skin and dull pigmentation, while antioxidants protect from free radical damage. Sea Buckthorn Berry also contains Omega 3, 6, 7, and 9 fatty acids, which helps boost elasticity and hydration in the skin cells.
Find it in Earthwise Beauty’s Passion Eye Serum. Using your ring fingers, gently tap 1-2 drops around the eye area.
Gotu Kola: this Ayurvedic herb has been used for centuries to hydrate the skin, promote cell renewal, minimizes scarring and it is high in antioxidants.
Find it in M.S.Skincare’s Illume Radiance Enhancing Moisturizer. Apply a pearl-sized amount to the face and neck in upwards strokes.
The skincare industry has come a long way since our parents were in their youth. So many Baby Boomers get confused by all of the products and ingredients that are now available on the market. After the age of around 45, skin starts to lose moisture and elasticity at an even greater rate. So here are some ingredients to look for:
Wild-Harvested Seaweed: seaweed is a humectant, meaning it draws moisture in, making it a skin cell hydrator. It also contains amino acids, effective in skin plumping and smoothing.
Find it in Honua Skincare’s Pa’akai Cleansing Cream. Massage 2-3 pumps into damp skin for up to one minute.
Rose Hydrosol: Rose is a natural hydrator, reducing the effects of skin aging, like fine lines and sagging skin.
Find it in M.S.Skincare’s Sofia Luminous Rose Mist. Spritz the skin after cleansing, every morning and night.
Elderberry Extract: high in antioxidants, this berry extract delays skin aging, and can help reverse sun damage.
Find it in Earthwise Beauty’s Nap in the Meadow Face Serum. After cleansing and toning, apply 2 pumps to the face and neck.
Sea Fruit (Corallina officinalis) Extract: this marine fruit protects skin from free radical damage, has an exfoliating resurfacing effect, hydrates the skin, and improves skin’s texture and appearance.
Find it in Earth Harbor’s Nymph Nectar Superfruit Radiance Balm. Use as a moisturizer or as a sleeping mask. Rinse off the next morning and complete your skincare ritual.
Silent Generation Skincare
Our oldest and wisest generation are also the most minimal generation. They were raised in a time where skincare was a real luxury, and technology behind it was not advanced in the slightest. So the products they grew up using have changed dramatically. Older generations are also not akin to using a handful of different products on their skin. They tend to go for a more simplistic regime.
Here are some ingredients for the over 75s to keep an eye out for, and where to find them.
Candelilla Wax: this ingredient is derived from the Candelilla shrub, and helps with lessening the appearance of scars, wrinkles, and age spots. The wax also hydrates and acts as a barrier to lock moisture in and protect from external skin stressors.
Find it in Woolot’s Nourishing Cleansing Balm. Just massage with water over the face and rinse off.
Carrot Seed Oil: this is an effective skin regenerator, while also preventing sun damage. Carrot seed also has antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties.
Find it in Earthwise Beauty’s Resiliency Face Serum. Just apply 2-3 drops after cleansing.
Kukui Nut Seed Oil: this nourishing and conditioning oil penetrates deeply, improves skin texture and elasticity, and soothes irritation. It’s also high in Omega 3 and 6 for anti-aging properties, and linoleic acid for hydration.
Find it in Honua Skincare’s Māhealani Moonlit Glow Balm. Just apply a small amount to face and neck after cleansing.
Wherever you are in life, always ensure that you're caring for your biggest organ by using quality products. It has a long life ahead of it.
Emma Masotti is an Australian now living in Austin, TX, and has been a trained esthetician for over 15 years. She is a sustainable skincare writer, educating and building awareness around proper skin health that doesn’t cost the earth.
Some of the products promoted in our blog are from our online store. Many others are brands we have researched and found to be great examples of sustainable, ethical, and innovative brands in their field, and we don't make any profit from mentioning them in our blog. #CollaborationOverCompetition