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Anti-Aging Skin Care Tips

By Cynthia Bailey MD. This page was updated on Wed, Jun 10, 2020

anti-aging skin care tips that workdermatologist's advice

Anti-aging skin care tips that work. Today skin care science has great options to fight the signs of skin aging. Not all products work equally though. How do you sort through the promises and marketing prose to find the products that really work?

Dermatologist explains the best scientifically proven skin care products and routines to fight the signs of facial skin aging. 

At Dr. Bailey Skin Care, I sort through the science to give you only the best product formulations and routines that work well together and that have proven results to reverse and prevent skin aging. Feel good about how your skin ages with my proven products and skin care routines.

What are the top 6 proven skin care ingredients to fight the signs of skin aging?

  1. Retinoids: These ingredients are related to vitamin A. They help stimulate skin collagen renewal, reverse age-related skin thinning and uneven skin pigmentation. The best non-prescription retinoid to fight skin aging is retinol. 
  2. Glycolic Acid: This is the best alpha hydroxy acid to fight skin aging. This acid also helps build collagen, improve uneven skin color, hydrate dry flakey skin, and soften rough or crusty age spots. It also stimulates your skin to make hyaluronic acid in the deeper layers. This hydrates skin to a dewy and youthful look and feel.
  3. Vitamin C: This vitamin and antioxidant also helps to rebuild skin collagen and improve darkened uneven skin pigment. Vitamin C has a more subtle impact on skin aging that the first two ingredients I mentioned. It is however an important and powerful antioxidant to fight free radical skin damage.
  4. Green Tea Antioxidants: These powerful antioxidants have proven benefit to soothe skin irritation and redness and help load skin with protective antioxidants to fight aging and sun damage. Green tea EGCG polyphenol antioxidants are my favorite antioxidant to fight free radical skin damage for all complexion types. 
  5. Zinc Oxide Sunscreens: Mineral zinc oxide sunscreens provide the best level of broad spectrum protection against UV induced skin destruction. UV damage is the number one cause of skin aging and must be blocked to fight skin aging.
  6. Skin Lighteners: These help treat uneven skin hyperpigmentation due to sun damage. The best ingredient is hydroquinone. Other skin lighteners include kojic acid, arbutin and azelaic acid. 

With all of these powerful age-fighting ingredients, product stability and formulation are critical for delivering results.

  • My products are all made in a pharmaceutically approved laboratory, have stable formulations and advanced delivery systems.
  • I combine them for you in synergistic combinations in many of my skin care kits.

For example, my Ultimate Pigment and Sun Damage Repair Kit combines about every ingredient,

The Ultimate Pigment and Sun Damage Repair Kit has made an amazing difference in my longstanding Poikiloderma of Civatte skin condition. I've tried so many products that never made much difference. IPL and Microneedling were of no benefit. I'd almost given up after ten years of trying to find relief for this condition while spending a few thousand dollars doing so. The combination of these products has reduced my symptoms by 50% in two months! I've reduced the amount of heavy coverage makeup on the lower face and neck areas. as the discoloration fades. Plus, the kit has improved the overall texture and appearance of my entire face. I anticipate even more improvement over the next few months. Very grateful I took the chance on this kit as it has exceeded expectations and is helping me regain confidence in my appearance. - Ms. Green Eyes, 2019

Skin care product combination and quality matter, my products get results!

Build a Dr. Bailey Complete Skin Care™ routine with each of the key skin-rebuilding ingredients for best results; reverse past damage and keep your skin looking younger as the years pass.

best skin care routine to fight signs of facial skin aging

Remember, Complete Skin Care always gets the best results because it gives your skin everything it needs to be healthy and attractive. Dr. Bailey's Complete Skin Care Routines ™ involve layering products for these 4 essential skin care steps of,


Build a powerful facial Complete Skin Care Routine to fight the signs of skin aging

Best facial skin cleansers

best pH balanced face cleanser

CLEANSE: Wash your skin twice a day. Chose a cleanser matched to your skin type. Daily Foaming Facial Cleanser is good for normal and oily complexions. Men find it has the perfect consistency for wet shaving too. Extremely Gentle Foaming Facial Cleanser is ideal for normal to sensitive complexions. It’s my personal favorite cleanser of all time!

Alternate one of these cleansers with Calming Zinc ™ Soap if you suffer from rosacea or seborrhea.

best non-drying facial toner with natural ingredients

If you want an entirely natural cleansing alternative consider my Naturally Best Bar Soap. My Naturally Hydrating Pore Minimizing Toner adds an extra clean to help products penetrate better while refining pores and soothing skin with hypoallergenic, organic botanicals. 

best products to reverse the signs of facial skin aging
best antioxidant product to fight skin aging

CORRECT: In the morning apply Green Tea Antioxidant Therapy to fight redness and load skin with antioxidants for the day. If you want to incorporate vitamin C into your routine layer Vitamin C Serum on top of the Green Tea or in place of it. When using vitamin C, be sure to let each step dry for a minute or so.

best eco-friendly facial exfoliating scrub to brighten skin

Twice a week use a skin brightening scrub after washing. The most popular is Bamboo and Clay Thermal Exfoliating Scrub. I like to use it in the morning to enjoy the bright and smooth texture of my skin all day.

If you have crepey skin with lines and wrinkles, you can plump them instantly by applying Instantly Luminous Multi-Action Serum before the Green Tea. I do this every morning and love how my skin looks and feels! Get this popular product combination in my Layered Up Besties Kit!

best antioxidant and hyaluronic acid serum combination for skin aging


best retinol to fight skin aging and acne
At night apply Retinol Intensive Anti-Wrinkle Cream then right after it apply Glycolic Acid Face Cream. This second product also hydrates your skin. You could just pick one of these products at first. If you have sensitive skin start with the Retinol. If you don’t, you can pick either. You will find use instructions on the pages for these products. Combining them gives amazing results - but is tricky! If you are new to these ingredients pick one and add the other in a month or two. 


best facial moisturizers to fight skin aging
best facial moisturizers for anti-aging skin care

HYDRATE: where your skin gets dry with Daily Moisturizing Face Cream for Normal to Oily Skin or Daily Moisturizing Face Cream for Normal to Dry Skin. Areas of dryness include the cheeks and around the eyes. The T-zone of oily complexions may contain adequate oil gland production and will hydrate your skin naturally. If you use a correcting product in a hydrating cream base, such as the Glycolic Acid Face Cream then you have accomplished 2 steps with one product. 

best sunscreens to prevent sun damage

PROTECT: Every day wear broad spectrum sunscreen. Yep, every day on all exposed skin because UV exposure of even small amounts starts a cascade of chemical events inside skin that result in collagen destruction. Sun also causes age spots and uneven skin pigment.

Pick your sunscreen to match your skin type and needs. Zinc oxide provides the best protection. It is non-irritating for sensitive skin, safe for everyone to use and now invisible on the skin thanks to high-tech advances. My top sunscreen choices for the face include:

best zinc oxide sunscreen to protect skin

Sheer Strength Pure Physical Spray SPF 50+ Sunscreen is a favorite that is invisible and easy to spread. I wear this every day on non-facial skin like my neck, decollate, back of my hands etc. This sunscreen is also easy to apply to facial hair-bearing skin of the beard and mustache. 

Sheer Strength Pure Physical Invisible SPF 50+ Sunscreen is weightless and easy to use for all complexion types. 

best tinted sunscreen to protect face skin
Sheer Strength Pure Physical Tinted Matte SPF 50+ Sunscreen  is my personal favorite daily facial sunscreen because the tinting evens any complexion flaws, the matte base is ideal for under makeup and the 4% iron oxide in the tinting technology blocks visible light rays that can contribute to pigment problems. The matte base is also oil absorbing to fight skin shine.


Suntegrity 5 in 1 BB Cream SPF 30 Sunscreen: tinted pure mineral protection in a natural formulation made with hydrating botanical oils. 

Solbar Zinc and Citrix Sunscreen are great options when you need a water resistant product for sweating or swimming

Let me help you build a powerful facial anti-aging skin care routine with my dermatologist-created skin care kits!

Get everything you need in my Ultimate Pigment and Sun Damage Repair Kit


anti-aging skin care best routine


Get the best antioxidants and sunscreen with my Anti-Aging Antioxidant Kit

anti-aging antioxidant skin care

More of my popular anti-aging kits include:

best skin care routine for healthy facial skin
Men's Face Care Kit which fights ruddy facial redness and skin aging at the same time. A great multitasking routine for men. Plus, the most popular sunscreen among my male patients because it rubs well into hairy skin while feels weightless and is invisible. 
anti-aging skin care for men
best glycolic acid facial skin care routine to get results

Let's say goodbye to skin aging, including dry, scaly, wrinkled, crinkled, thin and crepey skin covered with spots and uneven skin pigment or crusty barnacles. Who needs it? In these modern times we can intervene and see fantastic results right away. I've given you tips to create a Complete Skin Care Routine for your facial skin that will get results. Did you know that I often see the same degree of skin aging on a patient's hands as I do on their face? The good news is that many of the same ingredients that work for facial skin care will work to fight skin aging on your hands. It's true - click here to learn about anti aging skin care for your hands. With this information, you’re on your way to younger looking and healthier skin! 

Do you want to know more about the science behind skin aging?? Here is some geek info for those who crave to know more......

What happens to facial skin that makes it look old?

what happens to skin that makes it look oldUnderstand the structural and physiologic changes in skin aging to target your unique challenges:

The key issues with skin aging are:
  1. Wrinkles and skin thinning due to a loss of collagen and elastin. This happens in the second layer of your skin called the dermis. Daily sun exposure is the most common cause.
  2. Fragile, crepey skin due mostly to a thinning of your top living skin cell layer called the epidermis, and to scaling in the dead cell layer called the stratum corneum. This happens from both sun exposure and intrinsic aging (the passing of years).
  3. Age spots due to increased pigment in the top epidermal cell layer. Some age spots also have excessive epidermal cells and dead stratum corneum cells. Both sun and age play a role in causing age spots.

The common path for most causes of skin aging is free radicals; free radicals matter!

They are the intermediaries of many of the skin aging issues that I just listed. You want to protect your skin from free radicals as much as possible. Free radicals form when UV rays hit your skin. They also form from other more complex stress reactions inside your skin. Unfortunately, free radicals are just part of life for our skin, but you can use antioxidants and sun protection to reduce their damaging impact. It's important to try because once free radicals form, they start reactions inside your skin that lead to structural and physiologic damage. 
The goal is to load our skin with antioxidants. We can pack the skin with high levels of antioxidants from inside (by eating fruits and vegetables) and from the outside, too. That’s why my anti-aging skin care products are packed with the best proven antioxidants. In my professional opinion, these are green tea polyphenols (Green Tea Antioxidant Skin Therapy Cream) and Vitamin C (Vitamin C Anti-Wrinkle Professional Treatment Serum). ~ Dermatologist Dr. Cynthia Bailey

How much does the sun age your skin?

Sun exposure is the biggest cause of skin aging and wrinkling; most of the structural and physiologic damage that leads to skin aging starts with exposure to a UV ray. Keep the UV rays off of your skin! When patients are skeptical about how much of their skin aging is sun induced, I ask them to explore the facts for themselves. Here’s how: Look closely at your skin. Compare the areas that are sun protected, such as your buttocks and tummy, to the commonly sun-exposed areas of your outer forearms, the sides of your face and neck or the V of your chest. Do the sun-protected parts of your skin have fewer wrinkles, crinkles and age spots? Doesn't the skin look thicker too? When you bunch up the sun protected skin, aren't there fewer fine wrinkles and folds? The wrinkles, crinkles, crepey lines, thinning and age spots are due to years of sun. 

How can you make old skin look younger, fast?

You can quickly buff and polish the dull and crepey look on aging skin to a dewy luster with simple exfoliation.  You can do this gently on a daily basis or more intensely several times a week. Exfoliation doesn’t change the structure or cause of skin aging, but it ‘picks up’ the youthful glow almost instantly. When you moisturize skin that has just been exfoliated it has the dewy and smooth look of younger skin.

4 key steps to stop and even reverse the signs of skin aging:

    1. anti-aging skin care best products to reverse skin agingProtect your skin from UV rays with the best quality broad spectrum sunscreen and avoid direct sun exposure as much as possible.
    2. Protect your skin from free radicals by using proven antioxidant products.
    3. Build up your skin's structure including cells, and vital components of the two living layers of your skin, the epidermis, and the dermis, using proven active ingredients.
    4. Brighten your skin's texture and tone to create a more youthful and healthier complexion.

    Powerful products to reverse the signs of skin aging can be irritating to sensitive skin. They are tricky to use. I've been coaching people for years and here is what I tell my patients.

    Dermatologist's Tips if You Have Struggled with Anti-Aging Skin Care Products

    dermatotlogist's tips for using anti-aging skin care products
    Understand your skin type and how it might respond to different anti-aging products.  In general, complexions are a combination of:
    • Oily
    • Dry
    • Normal

    Skin sensitivity is either:

    • Sensitive and often intolerant
    • Normal
    • Really tough and tolerant

    The skin on different parts of your face may have ‘micro’ variations! Yep, you can have an oily and tough T-zone and dry and sensitive cheeks. You will have the most success if you treat each area individually. For example, a person fighting skin aging who has sensitive facial rosacea won't ever tolerate glycolic acid on their face. Their face may do best with Green Tea and Retinol instead. They may not be able to tolerate Retinol on their cheeks but do fine with it on the sides of their face, crow's feet and around their mouth. 

    Of course, to fight skin aging everyone needs to wear a broad spectrum sunscreen on all exposed skin every day.

    The bottom line is that I tell my patients who are fighting their aging skin problems to focus on product ingredients with the best scientific evidence of effectiveness. Pick from those products based on what their skin can tolerate. Then, build their skin care routine and support their skin with the right cleanser and moisturizer.

    On my product pages, I give you extensive dermatologist-level information to help you understand the ingredients and the formulations to help you make the right choices. My products are designed to layer, so that you can customize and layer your complete skin care routine for your unique complexion and needs.



    DiNardo Joseph, et. al., Clinical and Histological Effects of Glycolic Acid at Different Concentrations and pH Levels, Dermatolol Surg, 1996;22:421-424

    Babilas Philipp, et. al., Cosmetic and dermatologic use of alpha hydroxy acids, Journal of the German Society of Dermatology, 2012 (10): 488-491

    Beasley Donathan G, et. al. Characterization of the UVA Protection Provided by Avobenzone, Zinc Oxide, and Titanium Dioxide in Broad-Spectrum Sunscreen Products, Am J Clin Dermatol 2010; 11 (6): 413-421

    Maier T., Korting H.C., Sunscreens – Which and What for? Skin Pharmacol Physiol 2005; 18:253-268

    Farris Patricia K, Topical Vitamin C: A Useful Agent for Treating Photoaging and Other Dermatologic Conditions, Dermatol Surg 2005:31:814-818

    Varani James et. al., Vitamin A Antagonizes Decreased Cell Growth and Elevated Collagen-Degrading Matrix Metalloproteinases and Stimulates Collagen Accumulation in Naturally Aged Human Skin, J Invest Dermatol 114:480-486, 2000

    Katiyar Santosh K et. al., Green Tea Polyphenol Treatment to Human Skin Prevents Formation of Ultraviolet Light B-induced Pyrimidine Dimers in DNA, Clin Cancer Res 2000,6: 3864-3869

    Tsukahara Kazue, et. al., The Effect of Sunscreen on Skin Elastase Activity Induced by Ultraviolet-A Irradiation, Biol Pharm. Bull 28(12) 2302-2307 (2005)