Tuesday, March 2, 2010

You Only Get One Face

In the summertime, I'm mostly incognito - usually hiding under a huge, floppy hat despite the fact that I've slathered SPF 70 all over my face.

I'm obsessed with keeping my skin healthy, particularly the skin on my face. And I'm also convinced that the girl who covers up her face now is the woman who ages gracefully and healthfully into many, many decades later. I'm also a bit fearful of my family genes and the incidents of skin cancer in my family. So I lather up and cover up and use a lot of bronzer. It's a good combo.

But now I've discovered two little gems that are not only keeping my skin healthy, they're imparting this great glow that I never thought I would have. For years, I've spent my skin care dollars on high end moisturizers and night creams, only to be disappointed by the results. Recently, a dermatologist pointed out to me that we need to treat the skin directly with the things that it needs and not let the marketing messages from Olay, Ponds or whomever influence our skin care decisions.

For me, at age 39, that means integrating Retinol and Vitamin C into my daily life. And that's it. Just those two items. I still use my tried-and-true Cetaphil cleanser and my Boots No 7 moisturizer. I also use an organic eye cream. In the mornings, I apply Vitamin C serum (10%) onto my face. In the evenings, I use Retinol cream (.05%) on my skin. The Retinol can cause some minor pealing as your skin gets used to high concentration of Retin-A. But I think that the pealing is largely off-set by the great glow that the Vitamin C gives you each morning.

Certainly, there are other things I do for my skin. I eat 8 to 10 servings of fruits and vegetables each day. I drink a lot of water. I take a ton of Omega 3s and fish oil. I am religious about washing my face every day. But it's amazing to me that just by adding in these two products, I'm looking at a whole new face in the mirror each day.

The products I've mentioned in this post are mostly available from doctors and "medical spas." You can also find them online. I use the Obagi line and the total amount that I spent on both items was less than $130.00. I think it's safe to say that I'll get months of use out of each, since just a tiny bit of product is necessary each day.

You really do only get one chance to preserve your face. It's so necessary to take the steps we can now - to ensure many years of health, glow and vitality.

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