Skincare: 20's, 30's, 40+

It’s an unfortunate fact, but I didn’t take good care of my skin until my mid to late 30’s.  Even then, I didn’t take the best care.  I was a sun and tanning bed worshiper from my teens forward.  I can’t remember ever wearing sunscreen as sad and scary as that is.

That is certainly not the case anymore.  However, some of the damage I did to my skin is irreversible and terribly regrettable such as hypo-pigmentation, hyper-pigmentation, wrinkles and fine lines.  While I am in my early 40s, some lines and wrinkles are to be expected, but the number and condition of my wrinkles is due to my own negligence. 

My skin is a priority now (better late than never). I have a day and night routine that I stick to, no matter what.  In addition to cleansing and moisturizing, I use retinol, AHA/BHAs, peptides, and antioxidants. I always make time for an occasional mask or facial as a treat for my skin.  And while some of my damage is permanent, some of it is not.  And with a little time and effort, my skin looks better and is getting better – even at 41! Yes, it will age and wrinkle, but I will prevent it from happening faster than it should.

It’s never too late or too early to start your routines.    And please remember to always use sunscreen – there is no tan worth the damage it does.  That’s what good self-tanners like Loving Tan are for - it’s a great one, I highly recommend! 

Below are some day & night skin care routines for 20-40+ year-olds.  I’ve also included some product links for some of the steps in the different routines.  These are products I have tried and enjoyed.  Some are pricey, but if you are going to invest in beauty products, skin care is the most important category.  And, finally, at the bottom of the post, I’ve included some terms and what they mean with regard to skin care. 

Certainly, if you have any questions or comments, please leave them below. - Jill - xoxo

SKIN CARE DAY AND NIGHT ROUTINES

 

20s

MORNING ROUTINE

  • Cleanser (gentle foaming cleansers are best and are non-drying and non-irritating) Recommendation -  Cle de Peau Beaute Softening Cleansing Foam 
  • Spot/acne treatment serum * Optional (salicylic acid or dermatologist recommended serum)

RecommendationMurad Acne Clearing Solution 

  • Moisturizer (light, oil-free recommended, except for very dry skin)

Recommendation Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion+ 

  • Sunscreen (25% SPF at least) 

Recommendation Clinique Super City Block Oil-Free Daily Face Protector 40 SPF 

*You can also use a moisturizer that contains SPF if you don’t want to use two separate products.

  • Sunglasses – Protects the eyes and sensitive skin around them

EVENING ROUTINE

  • Makeup Remover (gentle makeup remover oil or gentle makeup remover wipes)

RecommendationBoscia Makeup-Breakup Cool Cleaning Oil 

  • Cleanser (gentle foaming cleaner or a gentle exfoliating cleanser w/ AHAs and/or BHAs)

Recommendation (exfoliating) -  Murad Acne Cleansing Solution

  • Antioxidant Serum (like - Vitamin C, grape seed extract & pomegranate)

RecommendationRESIST Super Antioxidant Concentrate Serum 

  • Optional – Spot/acne treatment serum (same from morning routine)
  • Eye cream (light, non-irritating and specific for the eye)

RecommendationSK-II Essential Power Eye Cream

  • Moisturizer (can use a heavier, more hydrating one at night) 

RecommendationSunday Riley Tidal Brightening Enzyme Water Cream

30s

MORNING ROUTINE

  • Cleanser (gentle exfoliating cleanser w/ AHAs and/or BHAs)

RecommendationMurad Acne Clearing Solution 

  • Eye cream (light, non-irritating, specific for the eye)

RecommendationSK-II Essential Power Eye Cream

  • Antioxidant Serum (like - Vitamin C, grape seed extract & pomegranate extracts)

Recommendation RESIST Super Antioxidant Concentrate Serum 

  • Moisturizer (light, oil-free for all skin types)

RecommendationElemis Pro-Collagen Marine Cream 

  • Sunscreen (25% SPF at least)

RecommendationClinique Super City Block Oil-Free Daily Face Protector 40 SPF 

*You can also use a moisturizer that contains SPF if you don’t want to use two separate products.

  • Sunglasses – invest in a big fabulous pair to protect your eyes and skin around them

 

EVENING ROUTINE

  • Makeup Remover (gentle makeup remover oil or gentle makeup remover wipes)

Recommendation - Boscia Makeup-Breakup Cool Cleaning Oil

  • Cleanser (gentle exfoliating cleanser w/ AHAs and/or BHAs)

RecommendationMurad AHABHA Exfoliating Cleanser 

  • Eye cream (heavier/more hydrating, specific for the eye)

RecommendationRESIST Anti-Aging Eye Cream 

  • Serum (peptides and/or hyaluronic acid)

RecommendationPeter Thomas Roth Neuroliquid Volufill Youth Serum 

  • Retinoid (may combine 3 & 4 if you find a product w/ both or use two separate products)

RecommendationSunday Riley Luna Sleeping Night Oil 

*start out on the low end w/ this form of Vitamin A – it should be used right at bedtime – light and air break it down making it useless. Do not use on/around eyes! – And it should come in a dark bottle because of this.  Also avoid if you are pregnant or trying to become pregnant.

  • Moisturizer (heavier, hydrating at night)

RecommendationSunday Riley Tidal Brightening Enzyme Water Cream  

40+

MORNING ROUTINE

  • Cleanser (exfoliating, gentle, non-drying, non-foaming cleanser w/ AHAs and/or BHAs)

RecommendationMurad Age Reform Solution 

  • Eye Serum (peptides and vitamin C)

Recommendation - Elemis Pro-Collagen Eye Renewal Cream   

  • Eye cream (light, non-irritating, specific for the eye)

RecommendationTatcha Luminous Deep Hydration Firming Serum 

  • Antioxidant Serum (like - Vitamin C, grape seed extract & pomegranate)

RecommendationRESIST Super Antioxidant Concentrate Seru 

  • Moisturizer (lighter, but hydrating, preferably with hyaluronic or lactic acid)

RecommendationElemis Pro-Collagen Marine Cream 

  • Sunscreen (25% SPF at least)

RecommendationClinique Super City Block Oil-Free Daily Face Protector 40 SPF 

*You can also use a moisturizer that contains SPF if you don’t want to use two separate products.

  • Sunglasses – Your eyes and skin around them are worth the Quay, Valley, Gucci, Dior or Chanel pair that you have been wanting (or all of them- hahaha)

 

EVENING ROUTINE

  • Makeup Remover (gentle makeup remover oil or gentle makeup remover wipes)

Recommendation - Boscia Makeup-Breakup Cool Cleaning Oil 

  • Cleanser (gentle, non-drying, non-foaming cleanser)

RecommendationClinique Extra Mild Liquid Facial Soap

  • Eye Serum (peptides and vitamin C)

Recommendation - Elemis Pro-Collagen Eye Renewal Cream  

  • Eye cream (heavier/more hydrating, specific for the eye)

RecommendationRESIST Anti-Aging Eye Cream 

  • Retinoid and Peptide Serum (use one product containing both or two separate products. If using 2 different products, peptide first then retinoid.

RecommendationSunday Riley Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping Night Oil & Elemis Pro-Collagen Super Serum Elixir (or flip flop one every other night)   *start out on the low end w Retinol (Sunday Riley) – it should be used right at bedtime – light and air break it down making it useless. Do not use on/around eyes! – And it should come in a dark bottle because of this.  Also, avoid if you are pregnant or trying to become pregnant.

  • Moisturizer (heavier at night)

RecommendationSunday Riley Tidal Brightening Enzyme Water Cream 

 

*Important – You can incorporate anti-aging products into your routine as early as your 20’s as a preventative (AHAs, Peptides, Retinoids, etc…).  But, understand the products and their ingredients that you are using.  The percentages of ingredients that are recommended below should be respected.  Too much or too little can prove harmful or with little to no benefit.  Some of you may find that you are able to use your AHAs/BHAs up to two times/day and others only once.  It’s up to your skin!  Also, some ingredients as noted below, can cause sun sensitivity, please be careful and always use sunscreen! And for any women considering pregnancy or who are pregnant, be sure to consult with a physician regarding use of any skin care treatment products before use.

Skincare Terms

AHA – Alpha-Hydroxy Acids are water-soluble acids used in skin care to exfoliate the skin.  This can repair dry, aging and sun-damaged skin.  They also help with age spots and other skin discolorations.  These acids loosen and remove the top layer of dead skin to allow the new skin to emerge.  Glycolic and lactic acids are AHAs. *Sun sensitivity w/ use*Glycolic acid recommended concentration of 5-8%.

BHA – Beta-Hydroxy Acids are oil-soluble acids also used in skin care to treat acne and blackheads because they get down into the pores and unclog them.  These acids are also antibacterial and help reduce inflammation.  The most common BHA is salicylic acid. *Sun sensitivity with use. *Salicylic acid recommended concentration of 2% or less.

Retinoid – A Vitamin A derivative used topically on the skin.   They treat skin conditions such as acne and hyper-pigmentation.  They are also used in anti-aging skin care regimens as they stimulate collagen production (collagen gives our skin bounce and production declines with aging) which helps improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.  Retinoids aid in the rate of the skin shedding the dead cells and preventing them from clogging your pores.  Consistent, regular use allows the retinoid to improve your skin cell turnover/division (getting rid of old and allowing the new cells to divide and function as they should). Cell division also slows down with age, so retinoids are extremely important anti-aging products. *Sun sensitivity with use. *Retinoid recommended concentration of .04% to .1%

Collagen – a polypeptide (amino acids/protein) found in our skin, hair and nails.  It gives our skin elasticity/bounce and thickness.  As we age, collagen production declines and this results in our skin thinning and losing its elasticity – which means wrinkles!

Peptide – Chains of Amino acids that when are long make up proteins in the skin and when are short, tell our skin cells how to function.  Peptides applied to the skin stimulate collagen production.  A common collagen-stimulating peptide is Matrixyl. 

Antioxidant – They help fight free radicals (inflammation-containing substances) that are harmful and irritate the skin.  Free radicals prevent collagen production from occurring at the rate that it should.  Using these on the skin helps reduce free radical damage and allow collagen production to function. Vitamin C, Vitamin A and beta-carotene are examples. *Some result in sun sensitivity with use.