Amazing Skin

Want to cop a glowing complexion and ward off age-related issues -- like fine lines and wrinkles? Don't wait until you have 40 candles on the cake. Act now!

You already know that age plays a huge role in how your skin looks and the way you take care of it. Early on, it's all about acne, but then as the birthdays pile up, other problems do, too. But what might remain a mystery is what to do about it. Well, the secret to staying crinkle free later is to act now, says Miami dermatologist Leslie Baumann and NYC derm Cheryl Thellman-Karcher. Luckily, age prevention for younger chicks is hotter than ever, and there are a ton of awesome, affordable products.

Your Age: 18-25

Your skin's characteristics: Because your oil glands are working at full speed, your skin is supple and naturally well moisturized. Your cells regenerate regularly, giving you an even texture and a pretty, rosy glow. But as you probably also know, there's a downside: Excess oil production sometimes causes breakouts and a shiny look.

Your skin strategy should be:

Suds up with a mild cleanser to remove makeup, oil and dirt without stripping your skin. If you have greasy skin, use a foaming oil-free face wash. Try some cleansing solution available in the market.

Go for an oil-free moisturizer (with SPF during the day). Pick one that has antioxidants like vitamins C or E or better yet, a combination of both. The free-radical fighters help prevent and repair sun and environmental damage. Avoid pore-clogging heavy creams.

Top tip: Start using eye cream. The skin around your orbs is the thinnest and least oily, so it requires a thicker moisturizer.

Your Age: 26-30

Your skin's characteristics: Finally! Your skin's oil production is under control. Except for the occasional zit, you should be in the clear, so to speak. Hate to break it to you though, your collagen production and cell renewal is slowing down, so environmental issues can play a heavier role since your cells aren't regenerating as often.

Your skin strategy should be:

Switch to a cleanser with salicylic acid and gentle sloughers. It will prevent sporadic breakouts and get rid of dullness-causing dead skin cells.

Throw in a deeper exfoliating treatment weekly. Glycolic peel and microdermabrasion kits remove damaged surface skin, revealing a fresher layer underneath and also stimulate collagen production.

Keep sweeping on an antioxidant-laced oil-free lotion (with SPF in the a.m.). But at night, pick one that also contains retinol, which encourages cell renewal and actually teaches your skin to exfoliate more efficiently on its own.

Top tip: Exfoliate, moisturize and apply SPF to your chest, neck and hands. They're exposed to as much sun as your face.

Your Age: 31-35

Your skin's characteristics: Since you're a smart cookie and have always avoided smoking and sunbathing (right?!), you should be A-okay. That said, your cheeks may appear less plump, and you might have some little lines, discoloration and dryness. No worries though. There's a slew of ways to deal no scary needles required.

Your skin strategy should be:

Make sure you are smoothing on a serum twice a day. Most can deliver more potent levels of age-fighting active ingredients (including antioxidants) than a regular lotion.

Top tip: Still worried about wrinkles? See a dermatologist. A doc could decide to prescribe some really powerful potions.

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