The Location: Club Metropolitan, NYC.
The Topic: Anti-aging.
The Mood: Relaxed, cocktail party-ish vibe.
While sipping wine and enjoying apps and bite-size desserts I had the pleasure of meeting Dr. Jeannette Graf, an assistant clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City. She was there to talk about anti-aging, specifically on how we can stop the aging process. She’s a big believer in diet and lifestyle but says “the right skin care plays a crucial role to stop aging now.”
Dr. Graf explained how our cells are hard-wired to function differently during the day when they’re in protective mode vs. the night when our bodies are at rest and our cells are renewing and repairing damage. Our pH levels, sebum, antioxidant production and more support this. “We can help this process along with the right products,” says Graf. “The bare minimum you should be doing is applying sunscreen during the day and a retinol product at night.”
MORNING: According to Dr. Graf the number one daytime anti-aging product to use is broad spectrum sun protection. It’s the most important thing you can do for your skin.
- Use it each and every day. Incorporate it into your morning routine, the way you brush your teeth.
- Use an SPF50 or greater in late spring through early fall since the sun’s UVB rays are stronger then. In late fall through early spring you can stick with an SPF30.
- Apply 30 minutes prior to sun exposure and reapply every 40 minutes.
- Sunscreens with added antioxidants like Vitamin C and E will further enhance protection from environmental pollutants.
- Apply it even if you’ll be in the shade or it’s cloudy out.
Try: Glytone Suncare Block Sunscreen Lotion, $37 at dermshop.com or Neutrogena Age Shield Sunblock, $9.99 at target.com.
EVENING: While you rest, your cells are in renewal mode. Dr. Graf believes “no matter what your age, complexion or skin type, retinol (Vitamin A) is the most important skin care ingredient to help your skin renew itself.” Retinol has been clinically proven to regulate skin repair on a molecular level. It will decrease fine lines and wrinkles, improve collagen production, enhance elasticity, improve tone and texture and target hyperpigmentation. There are multiple forms of retinol available in prescription and over-the-counter strength. Look for retinol, retinaldehyde and retinyl palmitate.
- Only apply your retinol product at night.
- Don’t apply on damp skin. It will absorb unevenly, increasing your chance of sensitivity.
- To avoid irritation, use every other day and start with the lowest percentage retinol cream and increase up from there as you find your skin tolerating it well.
- When using a retinol product, always apply sunscreen during the day.
- Continue using to maintain your results.
Try: Glytone Enhance Night Renewal Cream, $72 at dermstore.com, Eau Thermale Avene Retrinol+0.1 Cream, $69 at dermstore.com or SkinCeuticals Retinol 0.5, $55 at skinceuticals.com.