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Your skin at 80: a horror story with a happy ending

Is it too early to think about how your skin will look when you reach 80? Maybe, but to me it feels just like yesterday when I was a teen at the beach trying to get as brown as possible (it was considered cool), and even better if I could get my nose and cheeks to peel off.

In your teens, you worry about acne, and as soon as acne is under control (if you are lucky), you start noticing fine wrinkles (their arrival probably accelerated by the benzoyl peroxide in the anti-acne products you used). Your pores look definitely larger and you start worrying about how your skin is going to look in your 30s.

Close your eyes again and you are thinking about cosmetic surgery for your wrinkles, but worrying that you may end up looking like a Halloween version of what you used to look like. And with good reason: tight skin and puffy lips (pumped up with cross-linked collagen) don’t look very attractive.

By now, you are 50+ and feel sorry about the loss of eyelashes and eye brows. Should you get a eye brow tattoo and/or maybe glue some flake eyelashes? By now, you have lost most of your original eyelashes and look a bit like a Martian used to look in cartoons. You get a temporary tattoo for your eye brows and now you lose most of what was left of your original ones. You wish the fashion were back to the 1940s when Hollywood stars used to pluck their eyebrows to a thin line.

Close your eyes again and you are 70+. Your skin feels paper dry and tight, itchy and uncomfortable. Your dermatologist has sent some worrying looking moles that she had to remove to be biopsied. A bruise takes longer to heal and you try hard to avoid any blister or cuts because they take forever to go away.

But you never thought about 80! Just yesterday you were a teen worrying about acne and getting a perm (or straightening your hair, whatever was in fashion then). How much of this was caused by you and you treating your skin and hair as if it were going to last forever until it is not?

Forget about guilt. We are all to blame for taking our bodies for granted. Be happy and start taking care of yourself right now, even if if feels like it is too late. It isn’t.

If you have a child, make sure she has sunscreen and even a rash guard when she goes to the pool. A quick shower afterwards will remove most of the chlorine and other ROS* deposited on her skin.

For your acne afflicted pre-teen or teenager or even for you, avoid benzoyl peroxide and other fast and furious anti-acne products that will bring some relief with a high cost later in life. Go for a multi-faceted anti-acne strategy that protects the skin at the same time.

In your 20s, don’t agonize over fine wrinkles. Use products that will help your skin produce energy, renew cells and make matrix proteins and hyaluronic acid, and protect it from ROS*.
Keep doing this.

As you approach menopause, think about replacing that vanishing estrogen, vital for your skin and hair vigor. Keep preventing DNA mutations that will bring age spots and the danger of skin cancer, you have stem cells in your skin but you still need to prevent mutations from damaging them.

As your approach your 70s, keep nourishing your skin, making up for the decrease in blood vessels that used to provide amino acids, vitamins and essential fatty acids to your skin, which is perpetually renewing and in need of nutrition to make it possible. Vitamin A and epidermal growth factor will give the extra push it needs.

And then, when you reach the 80s, and even your 90s, you will find that your skin looks different but feels comfortable and it keeps infection away, it protects your from the elements and keeps your body well hydrated.

You will see your beauty, different from when you were a baby but still there, allowing you to keep loving yourself and living a full life.

In every stage of your life, keep Skin Actives working for you and your family.