Even if you’re a skincare news nerd, and read up tonnes to answer questions like which is the best moisturizer for mature skin, the sheer wealth of newness in the cosmetics industry can be overwhelming. Which is why we often turn to celebrity endorsement of products or info on skin care issues as it’s a shorthand way to understand products, ingredients and the latest science on cosmetics.
While indulging in some much needed pamper time over the weekend, and some reading up, I came across an interesting question in one of my regular magazines. An interview with a popular actress included a question about one beauty product she could not live without. Her answer was mascara, as she said it helps to open and brighten her eyes especially on those early morning commutes.
This got me pondering.
If someone asked me the same question what would I say? The answer came to me surprisingly quickly and wasn’t a makeup product at all, but rather a skincare product that I use twice a day. The one product I could not do without is, quite simply, a moisturizer. Being in the holistic skincare field, this of course got my brain fired up as I thought about the different types of moisturizers and how many women have no idea how to use them. It’s all very well using a daily moisturizer, but if it’s not targeted towards your specific skincare concerns then it really becomes quite pointless for your skin.
If I asked you now if you use a moisturizer I’m sure you would say yes, but if I asked you about the type of moisturizer or what active ingredients it contains would you know the answer? How would you know how to choose the best moisturizer for mature skin?
Don’t be too hard on yourself if you have no idea how to answer, this is exactly why I have written this article! It’s a brief starter guide to some of the main ingredients. Read on to learn more about the different types of moisturizers and how to work our the best moisturizer for mature skin – and how to avoid over hydrating your skin!
Humectants: How do they function in your skincare?
You may think your rich tube of night cream adds moisture to your skin, but did you know that humectants actually attract and trap existing water in the skin, as well as prevent moisture loss through the pores? They can also draw water from lower layers of the skin upwards, to give the skin a plumper appearance. In some cases, when the surrounding air is humid enough, humectants will draw water to the outer epidermis. Moisturizers with humectants are good for all skin types as they exclude some of the heavier oils, however I especially recommend them for dry skin types or if you live in a very humid climate.
These moisturizers usually contain ingredients such as alpha hydroxy acids, lactic acid or hyaluronic acid.
How Emollients work in Moisturizers
Known as “space fillers,” because emollients quite literally fill in spaces or gaps between skin cells that are missing moisturizing lipids. These are often oil based and conventional emollients contain heavy ingredients such as petrolatum or mineral oil which can clog pores and put your skin at risk for over-hydration. When your skin becomes over-hydrated it softens and breaks down and can leave your skin shiny in appearance with a rough texture.
Instead, opt for oils that are compatible with your skin’s own natural oils. Jojoba is a cult favorite as its composition is closest to the skin’s own sebum. This means your skin will simply drink it up and it won’t leave behind a greasy residue.
Role of Ceramides in Mature skin Moisturizers
Ceramides are found naturally in the skin but their levels may deplete due to various lifestyle factors. Known as skin “glue” ceramides are added to moisturizers to help the skin better retain moisture as well as strengthen and improve cell activity.
These class of moisturizers are especially beneficial for combination skin types or for skin conditions such as eczema.
Occlusive Properties of Moisturizers
These moisturizers mean business when it comes to hydration. They usually contain beautiful rich oils that provide intense moisture to more mature skin types. Younger folk should reserve these for the body and not the face, but for those of us with mature skincare needs these provide active ingredients and a potent dose of moisture to revive dull, dry or dehydrated skin.
How To Ensure your Moisturizer is Doing Its Job
so how do you know then which is the best moisturizer for your mature skin care needs? A good moisturizer will visibly improve the appearance of your skin and your skin will feel plump and supple to the touch with a vibrant glow. Play around until you find what works for you, but avoid synthetic ingredients and conventional emollients to ensure your skin stays its best.
The Alchemy du Corps launch range (watch this space this autumn!) will be offering a wonderful moisturizer containing powdered water soluble prickly pear and aloe vera extracts along with nourishing oils of rose, amaranth, broccoli seed and prickly pear. These ingredients are close to our heart as the plants live literally outside our door here in the Mediterranean. Together these powerful ingredients will help to brighten the skin, work on signs of hyper pigmentation and provide added environmental protective qualities. The occlusive role, yet non-greasy texture of this moisturizer combined with the active ingredients will make it an ideal daytime moisturizer that can be worn under make-up.