Doctor Susan C. Taylor, founding director of the Skin of Color Center at St. Luke's and Roosevelt Hospitals in New York City, has recommended that consumers follow a simple set of tips to get the most out of their age-fighting cosmetics.
The skin specialist begins by warning that overexposure to the sun is a sure-fire way to speed up the aging process.
According to Dr Taylor, getting a tan should be avoided due to skin damage, and a sunscreen or a moisturizer with broad spectrum protection and an SPF of at least 30 should be used on all areas of the skin not covered by clothes.
“Getting a tan from the sun or a tanning bed exposes you to harmful UV rays that can accelerate aging, causing wrinkles, age spots, a blotchy complexion and even skin cancer,” she says.
Dr Taylor also championed the use of moisturizers in order to keep the skin hydrated and help reduce the appearance of fine lines and make complexion look brighter and younger.
"It's very important that people allow time for the product to work. While a moisturizer can immediately plump up fine lines, most products take at least six weeks to work and sometimes it can take three months," says Dr Taylor.
Finally, Taylor also stresses common sense, stating that if a product burns or stings when applied to the skin then it’s probably not good for it, and irritated skin only highlights the signs of aging more.
“Active ingredients can do more harm than good when too much is used. Applying more than directed can cause clogged pores, a blotchy complexion or other unwanted effects,” continues Taylor.
Overuse also extends to the number of products that are used. Taylor states that using too many products, especially more than one anti-aging product, tends to irritate the skin, thus making signs of aging more noticeable.
All this, Taylor claims, serves to ensure consumers get the most out of anti-aging products and can ultimately save money too.
"People often think that the more expensive a product is, the more effective it will be," she says.
"That's not always the case. People need to shop smart since there are some very effective, affordable products in the skin care aisles of their local stores."