Suburbanbushbabe’s Skincare Routine for Mature Beauties and Wannabees

With the resources and advances women have today, 50 is truly the new 40, 40 is the new 30, and if you’re 20, you are a baby. At 55, I look so much younger and more vital than my mother did at the same age. Having Caribbean and African genes doesn’t hurt either. Black women are known for beauty well into their 90’s.

I only started paying attention to my skin in my mid-forties. Before that, except for using sunscreen religiously, I had a free pass. I would sleep with my makeup on, wash with soap and water, and if I remembered, use a moisturizer. Things are a little different now.

My Skin Stats:

Age – mid-50’s

Skin tone and type – Light skinned with many freckles, aging, normal with oily T-zone patches

Issues (all from aging and hormone loss from peri-menopause and menopause) –melasma (from constant commuting in my car); melia (tiny hard bumps beneath the skin; whiteheads, blackheads, facial “crone” hairs, neck wrinkle lines, sagging neck skin.

Time willing to invest – minimum; I’m so lazy I use Ponds Towelettes to “wash” my face at night.

Facial Cleansing Method – (Face includes neck and upper chest)

Morning: I have used the Oil Cleansing Method for 2 months now, with excellent results. In the shower I firmly massage a 4:1 ratio of Argan or Baobab oil and Castor oil into thoroughly wet skin, blot later with a wet exfoliating skin cloth and water rinse. (Castor oil is used in smaller quantities because it can dry out skin; if your skin is oily use it at 3:1.) Baobab is hands-down the silkiest oil I’ve ever used and absorbs beautifully. (You can also use jojoba, camellia, rice bran or even extra virgin olive oil.) I follow with Cheryl’s Herbs Moisturizing Skin Tonic; Azulex Cream (prescription-only for melasma) spot-applied. Then PSF or Shiseido Sun Block (SPF50), followed by Smashbox Photo Finish as a makeup primer.

Evening: (usually at my computer) Pond’s Cleansing Towelettes to remove makeup, then Cheryl’s Herbs Moisturizing Skin Tonic followed by PSF C Serum. After the C Serum dries, Azulex spot applied, followed by Neutrogena Visibly Firm Night Cream

Suggestions:

  • Start taking care of your skin early. 25 is not too early. I wish I had started then instead of relying solely on good genes and youth.

  • Checkout makeup and skincare forums. www.naturallycurly.com has a very active one as well as an over 40 forum. I picked up lots of great tips from women who know a lot more about this than I do.

  • Use Sun block, no matter what tone/color your skin is. It’s essential. SPF15 is not very powerful for faces. Go for an SPF 30 or higher. During the summer I can tan right through my SPF50, especially after an hour on the water. But I would rather use bronzer for that summer glow. If you commute in your car, consider a driver’s side window screen. Cheap and effective.

  • Treat yourself to regular facials from a good aesthetician if possible. I like the European deep pore ones. If a spa is too pricey, consider a nearby beauty school as a low-cost option.

  • See a dermatologist yearly for a comprehensive skin exam. Don’t wait for that mole to start growing or ominously pulsing.

  • Coarse facial hairs can be a problem with the loss of hormones. Mine seem to sprout overnight (if only my head hair would grow as fast!). Cheek down also seems to increase. Threading is an excellent method for removing, as well as eyebrow grooming, and is safe if you are using Retinol or glycolic acid (waxing is not safe).

Additional help for aging skin:

I mentioned diminished hormones affecting my skin. Well, loss of major hormones near the onset of menopause affected so much more than skin. For almost 2 years now I have been medically prescribed bio-identical hormones. For more information about perimenopause, menopause, symptoms, treatment options and resources:

http://www.project-aware.org/Experience/symptoms.shtml

http://www.project-aware.org/Resource/providers.shtml

http://www.power-surge.com/

Books:

The Sexy Years by Suzanne Somers

A Woman’s Guide to Natural Hormones by Christine Conrad

Where to get products mentioned:

Baobab oil and Argan oil – http://www.sheaterraorganics.com/

Castor Oil – The Vitamin Shoppe or Whole Foods. Online at

http://www.mountainroseherbs.com/

The Oil Cleansing Method http://www.theoilcleansingmethod.com/

Ponds Cleansing Towelettes and Neutrogena Firming Night Cream – any drugstore

Cheryl’s Herbs Moisturizing Skin Tonic: www.cherylsherbs.com — Ingredients Neroli, Rose Otto & Helichrysum (Immortelle) in Aloe Gel, Rosa Mosqueta & Vitamin E Oils. Very good value.

SPF 50 Sun Block, C serum, Hyaluronic Acid Serum – PSF Skincare (Pure Skin Formulations) http://www.psfskincare.com/xcart/home.php and other websites

Shiseido SPF 50 Sun block – very light and silky, instantly absorbs – www.sephora.com

Smashbox Photo Finish Primer – www.sephora.com

Good products I’ve used in the past and still love:

Source Naturals Skin Eternal Serum with C-Ester, DMAE and Alpha Lipoic Acid –excellent serum. I used for years and will probably start up again. Also has glycolic acid. Great value!

L’Occitane Immortelle Serum with SPF 45www.sephora.com Very pricey. Has the same Immortelle (helichrysum) as Cheryl’s Herbs Skin tonic above.

Hyaluronic acid serum or gel for a serious moisture hit. Non-irritating — make sure you know what the concentration is. Cheaper HA serums abound but only with about

1% Hyaluronic acid–

PSF makes a nice concentrated one http://www.psfskincare.com/xcart/home.php

KAL Hyaluronic Acid Facial Gel (10%) available at The Vitamin Shoppe is also a good brand.

 2009 Suburbanbushbabe. Used with permission