How To Deal With Acne & Wrinkles |

How To Deal With Acne & Wrinkles

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Whilst wrinkles are part and parcel of getting older, you might have hoped acne was relegated to your teenage years. But according to a recent study, cases of acne are on the rise among women in their late 30s and beyond, with a 200% increase in those seeking help for the condition. So how should you address fine lines and breakouts without making one or the other worse? Should you use anti-acne or anti-ageing products, or both? We found out…

Cleanse Gently

When it comes to treating breakouts and blackheads it’s important to stay away from cleansers that strip your skin of its natural oils. Anything too harsh can break down the skin’s barrier and leave your complexion with a tight, dry feeling, which will do little to promote a youthful complexion but will trigger oil production, leading to further blocked pores. Instead, reach for a milder cleanser – we rate Cetaphil, £5.99, Murad’s Anti-Ageing Blemish Time Release Cleanser, £26, and SkinCeuticals’ Blemish + AGE Solution Cleanser, £29.

Gentle Skin Cleanser, £5.99 | Cetaphil

Blemish + AGE Solution Cleanser, £34.65 | SkinCeuticals

Time Release Blemish Cleanser, £26 | Murad

Get To Grips With Your Hormones

Post-childbirth and pre-menopause acne is surprisingly common, and it’s all down to hormone levels. Many middle-aged women look to review their contraceptive choices, especially after having children, so make an appointment with your GP if you think this could be the reason behind your skin issues.

At the same time, breakouts can be triggered by increased levels of cortisol, our stress hormone, so make an effort to tweak your lifestyle and diet to keep your hormones on an even keel. As well as cutting back on caffeine (a stimulant), try meditation and yoga and reduce sugar and dairy, which can cause spikes in hormones such as insulin. It could also be worth booking in with a nutritionist to pinpoint any deficiencies you may have – a lack of omega-3 fats has been shown to trigger outbreaks.

Be Patient

While it can be tempting to try every product under the sun, try to stick to a routine. A skin cycle is around six weeks, so it can take that long for you to see any improvement. A six-week period will also give you an indication of how your skin reacts to hormonal changes – make a note and discuss any changes with your GP or dermatologist.

On a Similar Note

Be Product-Savvy

When it comes to skincare ingredients, keep an eye out for salicylic acid – an anti-inflammatory hero – as well as glycolic acid, which works to boost cell renewal. Antibacterial ingredients such as niacin (vitamin B3) and vitamin C are also clear-skin must-haves. 

Stock Up On SPF

The number one cause of wrinkles and fine lines? Sun damage. Despite the common misconception, not all facial SPFs trigger breakouts, so be sure not to forget this crucial step to keep fine lines at bay. SkinCeuticals’ cult range of SPFs are loved by beauty editors the world over – fragrance-free and mineral based, they won’t clog pores or create unnecessary oil. Also, try Frezyderm’s Sun Screen Velvet Face SPF50, £17.50 – the clever, oil-free formula leaves a matte yet velvety finish and works hard to absorb excess oil and sebum.

Try Retinol

While retinol may have earned a bad rap for causing redness and irritation, new formulations and improved science mean retinol-based creams, serums and treatments should be back on your anti-ageing radar. The best bit? Retinol is a derivative of vitamin A, which has been proven to tackle acne. When retinol comes into contact with skin, enzymes in the body convert it into retinoic acid, the active form of vitamin A. This, in turn, boosts cell turnover, ramps up collagen production, helps to neutralise free radicals and fades pigmentation. Long story short, retinol can treat and prevent everything from cystic acne to fine lines.

Embrace Laser

Laser or light therapy treatments are now a mainstay on the skincare scene thanks to their ability to heal the skin at a deep level and treat everything from dullness to scarring and acne. In London, facialist Debbie Thomas is known for her pioneering use of lasers – a former acne sufferer herself, she has long recognised their benefit and uses a variety of lasers and blue LED lights to reduce bacteria and boost collagen production. Book into the Debbie Thomas Skin Clinic at Harvey Nichols’ Beauty Lounge and prepare to reap the benefits; treatments start from £95 for 30 minutes. Neutrogena’s game-changing Light Therapy Mask, £39.85 (was £59.99), is an impressive at-home solution.

Shop our edit of the best acne solutions for 30-something skin...

Effaclar Duo Unifiant, £16.50 | La Roche-Posay

This cult clarifying cream, specially formulated for sensitive skin, is now available in a tinted formula.

Time Release Blemish Cleanser, £26 | Murad

With a balm-like consistency, this soothing cleanser works hard to hydrate ageing skin while banishing blemishes in one fell swoop.

Oil Control Gel, £26.99 | Neostrata

Thanks to a unique blend of skin-soothing acids, this vitamin-packed gel will help minimise oil and control shine.

Blemish & Age Defence Serum, £82.95 | SkinCeuticals

An oil-free, dual-action serum to improve the appearance of blemishes and signs of ageing.

Spot Stickers, £24 | Sarah Chapman

Tackle untimely spots with these game-changing invisible stickers, which can be worn under make-up.

Light Therapy Mask, £39.85 (was £59.99) | Neutrogena

Harnessing the power of LED light, this clever at-home mask will target acne-causing bacteria for a clearer complexion in the long-run.

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