As you get older, skin gets drier. So you pile on thicker moisturisers. But ageing skin also gets oilier, because if you haven’t noticed, skin that is dry tends to overcompensate by producing more sebum. And to add to the bad news , your cell turnover rate also decreases as you age, which means that if you don’t cleanse your skin properly and remove the surface impurities, your skin will be even more prone to congestion and breakouts.
So how do you strike a balance between curbing the breakouts and nourishing your skin properly? Products that do the former tend to dry up skin, while those that do the latter might clog up skin. But not all hope is lost, because there are products that can do both. Look out for key ingredients such as retinol, a form of vitamin A, which improves collagen production as well as promote skin renewal. It’s great for treating acne because it helps prevent dead skin cells from clogging pores. At the same time, it improves skin texture and diminishes the appearance of enlarged pores. The downsides? It’s not suitable for pregnant women, and will cause flaking. Thus, it’s best used with a super hydrating moisturiser afterwards.
Related article: Is Double Cleansing Really Worth The Effort?
Niacinamide, or vitamin B3, is another super ingredient for fighting acne in ageing skin. It’s soothing, antimicrobial, and helps regulate sebum production, smooth out skin texture, as well as even out skin tone. Plus, it’s used to treat dry skin by improving skin’s moisture barrier and it prevents collagen glycation, so it helps plump up skin and fine lines.
So here are 10 beauty products (five which have retinol and five which have niacinamide) you should add to your skincare routine, especially if you have ageing skin that’s prone to breakouts.
1. Sunday Riley A+ High-Dose Retinoid Serum, $128, from Sephora
This paraben-free serum is has a powerful formula that has a 6.5 per cent solution of retinol and retinol derivatives blend to fight signs of ageing such as fine lines and dull skin tone while decongesting pores and repairing UV-damaged skin. Meantime, a blend of white honey, cactus extract and ginger help rebalance and soothe skin.
2. Pixi Retinol Tonic, $22, from Sephora
This paraben-free toner has a unique time-release retinol to restore a youthful glow to skin. It also reduces fines lines and smooths out uneven skin texture while boosting collagen production. Plus, it helps strengthen skin’s moisture barrier to help lock in moisture so it doesn’t overproduce sebum.
3. Dr Dennis Gross Ferulic + Retinol Anti-Aging Moisturizer, $110, from Sephora and Net-a-Porter
Another paraben-free product, this hydrates skin and plumps up fine lines. Retinol, ferulic acid and an ECG complex works to smooth out skin texture, protect skin’s natural moisture barrier and reduces hyperpigmentation while protecting skin against free radicals that cause premature skin ageing.
4. Clinique Fresh Pressed Daily Booster with Pure Vitamin C 10% + Overnight Booster with Pure Vitamin A (Retinol), $52
Retinol and vitamin C work in synergy to fight signs of premature ageing in this powerful duo of booster serum. Mix a couple of drops of each into your moisturiser (the vitamin C in the morning, and the retinol at night) to see more even-toned and smoother skin. The appearance of fine lines and wrinkles are also said to be diminished with regular use.
Related article: 8 Of The Best Foundations That Actually Work For Oily Skin
5. Avene Physiolift Night Smoothing Regenerating Night Balm, $89.90
This night moisturiser contains a gentler derivative of retinol, retinaldehyde, which makes it suitable for people with sensitive skin. It helps improves cell turnover while increasing collagen production, and also has hyaluronic acid to plump and moisturise skin, for smoother and more luminous-looking skin the next morning.
6. Allies of Skin Promise Keeper Blemish Facial, $169, from Sephora
This leave-on treatment which has niacinamide is a powerhouse that helps unclog pores, kill acne-causing bacteria, refine skin texture, brighten skin tone and fade hyperpigmention while you sleep. Hyaluronic acid and phospholipids hydrate and moisturise skin while probiotics help rebalance skin microflora to prevent breakouts.
7. Shiseido Benefiance Wrinkle Smoothing Cream, $115
Niacinamide is at the top of the ingredient list of this day-and-night moisturiser. It helps smooth out wrinkles, improve skin radiance and combat photo-ageing with ingredients such as algae and turmeric extract. Formulated with what the brand calls Reneura Technology+, this aims to help re-energise skin cells so that they can respond quicker and faster to skincare to alleviate signs of premature ageing. If you have drier skin, go for the Enriched version of this cream.
8. Starskin 7-Second Morning Mask 7-in-1 Miracle Skin Mask Pads, $48 for 20 pads, from Sephora
This is a leave-in treatment that comes in the form of exfoliating pads. You massage skin with the side that has beads to exfoliate skin and promote blood circulation, then you go over skin with the softer side which is infused with a serum/moisturiser that plumps up skin. With ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, lactobacillus/soyabean ferment extract and niacinamide, this helps refresh, brighten and rejuvenate skin.
9. Paula’s Choice 10% Niacinamide Booster, approx. US$42, from Net-a-Porter
Mix a few drops of this booster with your moisturiser or apply it on its own to improve uneven skin tone, diminish the appearance of pores and wrinkles, and hydrate and soothe skin. It’s lightweight and suitable for all skin types, especially oily skin, and is free of fragrances.
10. 111Skin Y Lift Neck & Decolletage Serum, $495, from Robinsons
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