In each issue of WebMD the Magazine, our experts answer your questions about skin care, beauty, makeup, hair care, and more. In our May 2011 issue, Joanne Balassone, 56, a sales representative from Florham Park, N.J., asked why her old make up routine isn't working well anymore. To help her out, we asked Deborah Sarnoff, MD, clinical professor of dermatology at the NYU Langone Medical Center, and David Goldberg, MD, clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, for advice. Here's what they had to say:
Q: Why isn't the makeup routine I used when I was younger cutting it anymore?
A: Younger skin naturally produces more oil and skin cells renew themselves every 21 days, so the "canvas" stays smooth. But as we age, skin gets thinner and feels dehydrated, and cell turnover slows to about every 28 days. The trick to ensuring your makeup looks luminous and not cakey is to apply products in a way that will boost your skin's moisture levels.
Start by washing your face with a super-hydrating liquid cleanser. Then, when your skin is still damp, rub in a dollop of moisturizer. One pumped with SPF, vitamins, and antioxidants, such as Olay Total Effects 7-in-1 Anti-Aging Daily UV Moisturizer + SPF 15 ($19.99), will reduce fine lines and help prevent future ones.
Mature skin is full of ridges. For makeup to glide on smoothly without getting stuck in cracks, apply a primer after moisturizing. Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer ($36) is infused with antioxidants, including vitamin A and grapeseed extract.
Finally, use a makeup brush to apply a foundation like Cover Girl & Olay Simply Ageless Foundation ($13.99), which is infused with SPF 22. If you see caking at the end of the day, spritz your face with a moisturizing spray like Evian Facial Spray ($10) to remoisten your makeup and give skin a dewy quality.
A: First, the buzz-killing fact of life: As we age, we start to lose fatty tissue, and skin-plumping collagen production slows, revealing fine lines. But certain ingredients in makeup products can make your skin look and feel more supple and hydrated.
You're used to reading the labels on your skin care products, and it's just as important to do the same with your cosmetics, especially if you're seeing signs of aging. The zinc oxide and titanium dioxide in Jane Iredale PurePressed Base Mineral Foundation ($49.50) provide UVA/UVB sun protection for wrinkle prevention.
Hyaluronic acid, which is infused in L'Oréal Visible Lift Line-Minimizing & Tone-Enhancing Concealer ($11.95), plumps up fine lines by enhancing the skin's ability to retain more moisture. Antioxidants like the vitamin E and soy in Neutrogena Healthy Skin Custom Glow Blush & Bronzer ($12.49) help block wrinkle-causing free radicals from seeping into pores.
To prevent caking, apply makeup to freshly exfoliated and moisturized skin. Try an all-in-one product like Aveeno Positively Radiant Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30 ($14.99), which is infused with light-reflecting minerals to lighten the appearance of sun spots. And avoid using makeup that contains talc, a common filler that can clog pores and increase the appearance of fine lines.
Makeup Tricks of the Trade
It's not just which products you use to cope with the changes in your skin as you age, it's how you use them. We asked makeup artist Sonia Kashuk, who also founded the Sonia Kashuk line of beauty products, for her favorite tips:
If you want plumper lips:
Due to fat loss, lips get thinner over time. Fill out your kisser by using a lip pencil to slightly overdraw your lip line, Kashuk says. Also, steer clear of dark lipstick shades, which will instantly shrink your pout. After you apply your lipstick, dab a dot of clear gloss in the center of your lips to visually puff them up.
If you want fuller cheeks:
As you age, the cheek area hollows out. Use a cream blush on the apples of your cheeks and on your cheekbones to plump them up. "Add a hint of shimmer on your cheekbones to make them look higher," Kashuk says.
If you want brighter eyes:
Lashes tend to straighten as you get older, Kashuk says. To instantly open up the eyes, always use an eyelash curler after you've applied eye shadow.
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