December 10, 2008


In today's cosmetic-pharmaceutical world, commonly referred to as Cosmeceutical, there are hybrid moisturizers for every skin challenge. Cosmeceutical companies say that In contrast to cosmetic skin care products, which work to beautify the skin, cosmeceuticals will alter the structure of your skin and how it functions. 

A basic cosmetic skin care moisturizer will hydrate, come with a built-in sunscreen or a hint of color if that's all you need. While other, more advanced cosmeceuticals will exfoliate, smooth fine lines, or reverse the signs of aging. Some contain lightening ingredients that fade age spots, and even out skin tone. Others firm the skin, promote cellular renewal, or contain the same natural extracts, vitamins and minerals that we put in our bodies.

With so many formulas addressing so many issues, where do you start? 

First and foremost, select your moisturizer (s) based on your skin's type.....dry or dehydrated, normal, combination, or oily. As mentioned last month, texture is key to comfort so pay particular attention to the consistency of your moisturizer. And remember, the oilier the skin,choose more lightweight and fluid formulas , and the dryer the skin, opt for more rich and creamy textures.

Then factor in your chronological age PLUS your skin's estimated age. The oilier the skin, the slower the natural aging process and the drier the skin, the faster the natural aging process. Minus a few years if you're oily and add a few if you're dry. And, if you've had considerable sun exposure over the years, add much more since the suns harmful rays are responsible for 90% of our skins pre-mature aging process.

Once you determine skin type and age, you can then begin to look more closely at what you really want to address. A skin 25 years and under with no sun damage may focus on a regime with anti-bacterial ingredients and opt for moisturizers that regulate oil and water. While a more mature skin 45 years + with sun exposure may find herself on a layering program with products to fade broken capillaries, age spots or hyper pigmentation. 

Look closely to assess things like your skin's all over tone. How even is there sun damage, redness or discoloration? Is the texture of the skin thick and rough or is it soft and spongy? Are there new or existing fine lines.....where are they located and how deep are they? And visually, does the skin look translucent or transparent? These factors and more play a major role in your buying decision so it's important to determine your challenges in advance.

Other issues women face are budget, time they have to spend on themselves and getting the best bang for their buck in terms of simplicity and functionality. For this you want to seek the advice of a skin care expert or retail beauty consultant. They have extensive product knowledge and can save you time, money and energy with their recommendations. Help them help you by being prepared with a wish list of what YOUR particular concerns are. The more aware and educated you are about your skin and it's condition, the more the consultant can assist. 

And finally, whenever possible, touch, smell and try the moisturizer before you buy it. I am a firm believer that all beauty products really are kinesthetic and must be experienced first!

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