We all know that black doesn’t crack. It’s both a blessing and a curse as I walk down the street and teenage boys ask me to go to prom. I figure that when I am about 35 years old, I’ll actually start to look like I’m in my 20s instead of at 24 looking like I’m 17.
While darker skin does fare way better than our Caucasian counter-parts, our skin does age and should still be protected. I’m not saying to go out and purchase a ton of products, get some Botox or re-think a facelift, but do understand that aging skin looses elasticity, hair begins to thin and fine lines can make their way across our eyes and mouths.
Here are a few suggestions for keeping your gorgeous skin and hair youthful:
1. Drink plenty of water. Don’t deprive your body of the much needed universal hydrator. A hydrated body will result in gorgeous hair, skin and nails.
2. Eat well and exercise. Gobble down your leafy greens, salmon, nuts and beans in addition to hitting the gym, dance class or out door track to keep your figure lean and your external organs young and functioning normally.
3. Exfoliate. Whisk away dead skin to prevent hyperpigmentation and dark spots. I love the Rx For Brown Skin at home peel kit.
4. Step up your sun protection game. Yes we do need sunscreen so don’t skimp on the juice folks. Get a 2 for 1 with a foundation like Tarte Cosmetics (a vegan makeup line) that gives you coverage, moisture and SPF.
5. Seal in the moisture. Aging skin lacks moisture so keep your skin well hydrated. I’m talking hands, body and feet. Try lathering up at night, covering up with socks and long pants to lock in moisture and keep your skin sexy, soft and supple. I like Jason’s anti-aging body lotion made with green tea (which you should also drink plenty of).
6. De-stress. Don’t get stuck in the “to-do” list of life. If you’re not happy, complete or excited about what you do, who you do it with or how you do it honey it’s time for a wake up call! We only live once and the power within us is so much greater than succumbing to what the world says is acceptable. Prove them wrong and start living!
Sherrell Dorsey is a natural beauty expert, writer, speaker and advocate of health, wellness and sustainability in communities of color. In addition to creating OrganicBeautyVixen.com, Sherrell writes beauty articles for Tyra Banks’s beauty and fashion site TypeF.com, Jones Magazine, MySalonScoop.com and Posh Beauty. Follow Sherrell on twitter at www.twitter.com/organicvixen and connect with her on facebook at http://www.facebook.com/
803momofboyz, Black folks DON'T need sunblock/sunscreen. It's in the skin already.
I'm 41 and I use Reclaim by Victoria Principal. I have used it for 6 years and I'm told that I look much younger than my age. I also try to eat lots of vegetables and drink plenty of water. One of my real beauty secrets is sunblock. I have used sunblock religiously since I was 21. I was told by an esthetician Kathryn Leverette back in 91' that brown skin needs sunblock even on cloudy days. She said "It will keep you looking young for a long time" My friends laughed at me because they assumed that I didn't want to get darker. Well, I'm getting the last laugh now!
I remember seeing Anita Roddick, who founded the Body Shop, giving an interview on TV. She said that all you can do (and the best thing you can do) for your skin is "cleanse, polish, and protect." She considered any claim that products did anything else false advertising. I've followed her advice since my late teens: Cleanser. Exfoliation. Sunscreen.
I tried Alterna anti aging shampoo& condish and really liked them. Very emolllient and left my hair clean without feeling stripped.
Two rhumbs up to Rx for brown skin. I rcvd the set as a gift and there was a noticeable improvement in my complexion.
I started using eye cream this summer. I currently use an Origins one and apply it morning and night.
In addition, I use sunscreen.
Like Anonymous 1:22 PM, prevention is key.
Young ladies start early, you will thank yourselves for it in later years! Sun screen and alpha hydroxy acids will keep you looking young well into your (dare I say it?) 50's!!
One thing about pigmented skin is that any damage that occurs is VERY hard to repair. So the methods used to correct damage, pitting, scarring, and hyperpigmentation in women with less melanin can be damaging or scarring to black women.
I don't even think you'll find many clinics or doctors who would try heavy duty peels on black skin, even though I've seen plenty of black women with horrible acne pitting and scarring.
I have a good friend who is a black dermatologist, and she did say that lot of things that are currently done to turn back the clock have too many risks of further damage.
So while you may not get age spots, wrinkles, and crows feet like your white or Asian friends, you should take care of what you've got.
I've never had problem skin, but have always had a skin regimen. I've always used some kind of facial cleanser, I've always used something on the occasional pimples or dark spots, and as an adult i've made facials and occasional glycolic acid treatments for dark spots caused by a pimple or two a regular part of my regimen.
i regularly get complimented on my skin and non-black people always think I'm much younger than I am.
And a recent addition to my regimen that I recommend is sunscreen. You'll need to find one that isn't too greasy and doesn't make your skin look ashy, but they are out there.
I eat meat and dairy and drink a lot of water. Those oils that are found in certain foods are used by your skin and other cells as they turnover. If you don't eat meat or dairy, you'll have to find other sources to get those nutrients.
So my best advice (I'm in my late 30's) is to make prevention a part of your skin care regimen. If you start breaking out, see the dermatologist. If you have unwanted facial hair, look into getting it removed before you have issues like ingrown hair or hyperpigmentation.
I'm 43 and have used various skincare products over the years.
My current regimen includes cleansing my face with SheaMoisture African black soap morning and before bed. In the morning, I follow cleansing with Murad's exfoliating acne treatment gel (T-zone only) and daily moisturizer. I'm happy to say that my face is free of lines and blemishes and I'm often told that I look at least 10 years younger than my actual age.
I also exercise regularly and try to eat healthfully most of the time. I have been meat-free since June 2010…no beef, pork, or poultry. I do eat fish, seafood, organic eggs, and some dairy. I also take a daily multivitamin.
I think all of the above work hand-in-hand to keep my skin looking good and more youthful.
I'm in my mid-40s and get mistaken for late-20s/early-30s on a fairly regular basis. I agree that our anti-aging regimen needs to be about the ENTIRE body, not just the face.
Now that said: The one thing I wish I'd had access to in my 20s was some kind of sunscreen for my LIPS. If I don't put some kind of gloss (not just balm) on them the wrinkles are very evident. My lips give away my age IMO but most people aren't that sharp…anyway, take my advice: If you don't use any other kind of sunscreen, use some for your LIPS.
I use cetaphil face wash and calamine lotion for breakouts. I am only 25 so I guess I don't have much aging issues as of yet but the face wash and calamine lotion really keeps may face smooth.