In life, we say that hindsight is 20/20. We all wish that we could go back in time and tell our younger selves what to do and what not to do so that we could be the best versions of ourselves today. As a licensed esthetician and skin care expert, here are my top six beauty tips to my younger self (and you).
1. Do Not Over Tweeze Or Wax Off Your Eye Brows:
What I wouldn't give to tell my thirteen-year-old self to "put the tweezers down!". As we age, we notice that our brows do not grow-in quickly anymore or they've ceased growing altogether. Bald spots, short brows without proper length and thinning hairs plague many a beauty guru. Brow tint, pencils and tattoos are awesome but wouldn't it be nice if we had just let our brows live naturally and free from the start? I would tell my younger self to clean up strays between the brows and rogue hairs on the lids, but keep everything else in its rightful place! Nothing says youth and beauty like a full set of brows and If I could turn back the clock, those babies would remain mostly untouched.
2. Wear Mineral SPF Daily and No Tanning:
Without a doubt, I would tell my younger self to wear SPF everyday and avoid suntans and burns. Suntans seem so appealing when we are young: we look like glowing, bronzed beauties with flirty tan lines to boot. However, most of those suntans from our youth add up to major, permanent damage later on in life. UV exposure causes all of those hard-to-hide age spots and makes our skin wrinkle and sag. As soon as our early thirties and forties, we will notice freckles that don't fade, vertical lines on the mid-face and deepening crows' feet around the eyes. About 90% of this damage is caused by the sun exposure we maintained in our younger years! So think twice before unprotected days catching rays.
3. Start Getting Regular Monthly Facials ASAP:
Nothing prepares us for aging gracefully like regular, monthly, exfoliating facials, from our early twenties on. Starting facials anytime is great, don't get me wrong. But when it comes to regular facials: the earlier you start the better! Making a commitment to a professional skin care regimen as soon as possible is the path to aging prevention instead of years of intense and costly correction. Regular facials are maintenance not miracles, I always say. So I would tell my younger self to make and keep my monthly facial appointment to ensure clean and tight pores, dewey skin and amazing muscle tone for decades to come.
4. Don't Be Lazy: Always Wash Your Face Before Bed:
Being sure to wash makeup and environmental debris off every night is one of the best habits to begin in our youth. I know it can be agonizing to think about splashing water on your face and sudsing up when you're tired and groggy, but regular evening face washing is key to clear and youthful skin. Maybe we could avoid acne, enlarged and stretched out pores and premature aging if we had simply taken care to cleanse and treat our faces consistently every night. I know that if I had to do it all over again, I would be sure to wash my face as soon as I returned home from school or work so it wouldn't get neglected later on in the evening.
5. Start Using Eye Cream Now:
The eye area is delicate and ages faster than the rest of our face. Furthermore, we make a lot of facial expressions that involve and crease the eye area (for example, smiling and squinting). Side sleepers and eye-rubbers are also prone to aging the eye area more rapidly. Because of this, it is never too early to start using an eye cream. You don't want to wait until dark circles, puffiness and fine lines start plaguing the area before adding eye cream into your skin care routine. I would tell my younger self, to prevent premature eye aging before it starts, dab on a quality eye cream as soon as my late teens and early twenties.
6. Begin Botox and Retinol Before the First Signs of Lines:
Many of us are surprised to hear that neuro-inhibitors like Botox and Xeomin are best used on younger patients. Their role is to temporarily relax the muscles that move and crease the skin creating wrinkles. For best results, it is wise to consider these treatments before or just after scowl lines between the eye brows or the horizontal lines on the forehead appear. Once the wrinkles become deep and set-in, Botox injections will only soften them slightly or prevent them from getting worse - but it will not erase them. Always seek out a qualified injector who consults with you before the injections about your goals.
Retinol aka tretinoin (prescription strength or equivalent) is another great product to begin in our twenties and thirties. Retinol is a clinical strength version of topical vitamin A, and is responsible for healthy skin cell production rates, clearing acne and preventing collagen loss and wrinkles. You can pick up retinol at a doctor's office and/or medical spa and it usually comes in a little tube in cream or gel form. I consider retinol the fountain of youth and when I see patients who have used it for several years or decades, I can see they look eight to ten years younger than their peers!
Don't wait if you are serious about your beauty and facial rejuvenation goals - it's best to start now! Follow my six professional tips to freeze the hands of time and look younger everyday!