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You don't have to sacrifice effective results to find affordable anti-ageing products. Undo the damage ageing causes to skin without breaking the bank. A smart skin care routine can be achieved with a mix of products purchased at department and drug stores. You'll pare down the products for a simple regimen that will save cash and help you get brighter, more beautifully youthful skin.
Age by age
20s — In your 20s the goal is to minimise skin irritation and prevent sun damage. Any good sunscreen with an SPF 15 rating will be appropriate for you and provide 90 per cent protection from damaging sun. More expensive sunscreens -- rated 20 SPF or greater -- will be too greasy for the oilier skin we tend to have in our 20s. Using your sunscreen daily will help keep future crow's feet away and wearing sunglasses will eliminate squinting and the lines it causes in bright sunlight. Also, find a basic eye makeup remover -- a drugstore brand is fine -- because these are the years when you're likely to wear heavier waterproof mascaras and more eyeliners. It's a skin sin to fall asleep without removing makeup!
30s — When we hit our 30s skin cells start slowing down and don't regenerate as quickly. Dead cell buildup can dull the skin surface and muddy the complexion. A sea salt or sugar scrub daily gently exfoliates and works as well as any designer product. Prescription retinol such as Renova can be effective in treating wrinkles, but it's costly, so try the RoC line of retinol products -- it's moderately priced and is a great over-the-counter retinol backed by solid research. It's gentle enough for most skin types. Treat puffy eyes 30-somethings frequently develop from lack of sleep with drugstore eye creams that contain caffeine or anti-inflammatory ginseng.
40s — Cumulative skin damage: brown spots, sagging and redness are common concerns as we enter the 40s. If you have deep lines, Botox may be a worthwhile investment and a better choice than a $400 anti-wrinkle cream with no guarantee of good results. An at-home alternative to Botox is a cream with neurotransmitter-inhibiting peptides. These creams relax muscles for a mild softening of lines, and help increase the production of collagen. Shop around cosmetic counters and online for creams that contain these helpful peptides. Also look for a foaming cleanser for makeup removal, and select one with a moisturising formula.
Read ingredient labels on skin care products before purchasing. You don't have to pay the higher price to get the benefits your skin craves when less expensive store brands deliver the important ingredient. Clean, moisturise and continue to protect your skin from sun damage. A consistent routine will help in the fight against signs of ageing skin.
Don't neglect the inside work that helps skin stay youthful: hydration keeps skin plumped and moist, so drink plenty of water every day and maintain a diet filled with nutrient rich fruits, vegetables and lean protein.