Healthier skin for women and men

It may be impossible to turn back the clock on aging, but there are some easy ways to ensure healthier skin for seniors. When we look our best, we feel even better.

What causes dry skin as we age?

Time takes a toll on our skin, mostly because collagen in the body starts to decline after the age of 50. This leads to less elasticity, dry skin and wrinkles. Other factors that accelerate skin dryness include:

  • Not drinking enough liquids
  • Not eating a healthy diet
  • Spending too much time in the sun
  • Smoking
  • Stress

How can you make your skin look its best?

With the right skin care regimen, more radiant skin is within your reach, whatever your age. Even just a little extra TLC can minimize future age spots and wrinkles.

According to dermatologists, a good skin care routine can help both women and men look their best.  

  • Bathe every other day instead of every day. Keep bath and shower time to 5-10 minutes to keep your skin from drying out. When bathing, be sure to:
    • Shower with a gentle, moisturizing, fragrance-free soap or body wash. Look for soaps that are formulated for dry skin and have ingredients like glycerin, hyaluronic acid and lanolin, which reduces dryness.
    • Use warm water. Water that is too hot strips your skin of its natural oils.
    • Pat your skin dry after showering, but leave some water on your skin. This helps hydrate your skin and increases the benefits of a moisturizing lotion.  
  • Apply a creamy, fragrance-free moisturizer made for dry skin every day. Apply moisturizer right after you bathe and throughout the day to lock moisture in. 
  • Hydrate and drink plenty of water and other fluids to keep your skin healthy and supple. But keep your caffeine intake in check since caffeine can dry out skin.
  • Use a humidifier when it’s dry outside. Adding moisture to the air with a humidifier set to 45%-60% helps keep skin from becoming dry. 
  • Protect the skin on your hands with gloves when doing housework or gardening. This keeps your hands from being exposed to harsh chemicals. It also reduces your risk of injury.
  • Protect yourself from the sun. Too much sun dries out skin, causing age spots, wrinkles and skin cancer. Use sunscreen, a hat and loose clothing to protect your skin.
Use fragrance free soaps and lotions. Fragrances in products can irritate and dry out your skin. Look for labels that say “fragrance free” and not “unscented.”

Many men take a low-maintenance approach to skin care. Regardless of our age, we all want to put our best face forward. Follow these simple guidelines for clearer, healthier skin:

  • Wash your face twice a day, but don’t use soap. It’s important to wash your face every morning, but did you know that a nighttime scrub is equally as important? During the day, bacteria and pollutants accumulate on bare skin. So keep your face clear and healthy by also washing up at night. You may be surprised to hear that dermatologists recommend you not wash your face with soap. Why? Because normal soaps strip natural oils and leave a film on the skin. Find a facial cleanser that cleans and moisturizes to keep skin supple and fresh.
  • Moisturize after washing your face, and don’t forget the SPF. Gentlemen, take note: moisturizer is not makeup. It’s used to keep skin firm and healthy looking by forming a barrier to lock in moisture. Look for fragrance-free moisturizers that include vitamins A, C and E, which also stimulates the production of collagen.
  • Eye creams and wrinkle smoothers. Bags, dark circles and wrinkles mask our passion for life. Eye creams and wrinkle smoothers made specifically for these areas can help your brightness shine through! For under your eyes, an eye cream with caffeine or peptides helps. Wrinkles can be lifted with products formulated with retinol and vitamin C.

For a reminder on how to care for aging skin, check out this infographic from the NIH.