From cleansers to serums and sunscreens, take your morning and evening routines to the next level with these hard-working picks
Skincare needs change when you’re either approaching or in your 60s. You’re not trying to stop the clock, but are focussed on the healthy ageing of your skin to ensure your complexion looks rested, radiant and glowing.
Many changes take place within the body during this decade – and your skin is no different. ‘The levels of various hormones, including oestrogen and DHEA, decrease and this results in loss of elasticity and firmness, dryness and fragility and loss of radiance,’ explains Dr Kristina Semkova, consultant dermatologist at the Cadogan Clinic in London. ‘The loss of oestrogen has been associated with loss of collagen and ageing of the elastic fibres in the skin. Slowing cell turnover leads to a build-up of dead skin cells. Skin also experiences reduced production of sebum and lipids.’
The results you’ll see and feel? ‘Thinner, drier skin – no matter what skin type you had when you were younger. Skin can feel itchy and potentially be more prone to infection, age-related spots, fine lines and wrinkles, and skin generally loses its natural “glow” as the skin sweats less as glands get smaller and less active,’ explains Dr Semkova.
While beauty is ageless, tweaking your skincare routine and the active ingredients you use once you approach or hit your sixth decade could help make mature skin healthier and you feel more confident in it.
Here’s a skincare expert’s guide to some of the best skincare products for those over 60.
The cleanser for your 60s
Try: La Roche-Posay Toleriane Dermo-Cleanser Sensitive Skin, (£12.50)
• Size: 200ml
With skin more likely to feel drier, go gently from the start of your routine with no- or soft-foam face washes. ‘Avoid cleansing products that contain soap as these may irritate and dry the skin,’ explains Dr Semkova. ‘Gentle cleansers with moisturising agents, such as hyaluronic acid, lanolin and glycerine, can help reduce natural dryness.’ Efficient enough to remove make-up and impurities, yet gentle enough for use on sensitive, reactive or allergy-prone skin, this formula cleanses without stripping skin of moisture.
For more caring cleanser inspo, check out our pick of the best cleansers for sensitive skin.
The exfoliator for your 60s
Try: Kiehl’s Daily Refining Milk-Peel Toner, (£52)
• Size: 200ml
You may have noticed that things like salicylic acid and chemical peels that worked for you in the past are now too harsh for your skin. ‘Exfoliating is important at any age, but the difference in skin should translate into different products and gentler techniques,’ advises Dr Semkova. ‘Harsh chemical exfoliators are not needed, but gentle acids help boost the radiance of the skin without causing irritation.’ Lipo-hydroxy acid is a gentler derivative of salicylic acid that lightly exfoliates to help reveal brighter-looking skin. Meanwhile, emollients and almond milk comfort and soften.
The serum for your 60s
Try: Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Serum Synchronized Multi-Recovery Complex, (£82)
• Size: 50ml
When it comes to serums, formulas that hydrate on a number of levels are the way to go. ‘Opt for fragrance-free formulations where possible to avoid skin irritation,’ advises Dr Semkova. ‘Choose products that contain hyaluronic acid to help keep the skin moisturised and plump. While the molecule size of hyaluronic acid is too big to enter through the skin, it remains on the surface and absorbs water to help achieve healthy, glowing skin. Low molecular weight hyaluronic acid, such as sodium hyaluronate, could potentially penetrate deeper into the skin and keep moisture there for longer.’ You’ll find sodium hyaluronate and more in this award-winning serum from Estée Lauder. As well as being a moisture magnet, it contains a peptide called tripeptide-32, which may help firm skin and leave it looking more radiant and well rested in the morning.
The eye cream for your 60s
Try: Vichy Neovadiol Rose Platinum Eye Cream, (£27)
• Size: 15ml
‘The skin around the eye is thinner at any age compared to the rest of the skin. It’s therefore the earliest area to show fine lines and wrinkles,’ says Dr Semkova. ‘Hydrating ingredients help plump the skin and reduce that creased appearance temporarily.’ The citric acid, caffeine and rose extract found in this product may help brighten the appearance of the eye area.
The day moisturiser for your 60s
Try: No7 Restore & Renew Multi Action Day Cream, (£29.95)
• Size: 50ml
Opt for formulas that support your barrier function (skin’s first line of defence against environmental aggressors and moisture loss). ‘Ceramides are a great ingredient for skin in its 60s to help replenish the naturally occurring ceramides in the superficial layer of the skin,’ says Dr Semkova. ‘They help support the skin barrier and reduce the dryness and sensitivity of mature skin.’
The sun protection for your 60s
Try: Elizabeth Arden Prevage City Smart Broad Spectrum SPF50 Hydrating Shield, (£57)
• Size: 40ml
This broad-spectrum SPF50 is a hydrating shield and just the ticket to help protect fragile skin. ‘The sun is the leading cause of skin cancer and pigmentation on the face,’ warns Dr Semkova. ‘While sun damage effects build-up over many years, it’s never too late to start protecting the skin and avoid further damage. Rich formulations will also help hydrate skin parched by the elements.’
The neck product for your 60s
Try: Emma Hardie Lift & Sculpt Firming Neck Treatment, (£65)
• Size: 40ml
• Suitable for vegetarians and vegans
The neck is often the body part that gets overlooked, but remembering to take your skincare down to your chest area could help fend off everything from dryness to dehydration.
‘The skin of your neck and body also needs different care as you age,’ says Dr Semkova. ‘Emollients for dry skin on the neck and body should ideally be applied immediately after bathing. Find a product that creates a barrier on the skin to keep moisture in.’
The retinol treatment for your 60s
Try: No7 Advanced Retinol 1.5% Complex Night Concentrate, (£34.95)
• Size: 30ml
‘Retinoids and products that contain them should form an important part of your skin routine during your 60s. They help stimulate collagen production to plump out skin, which can help reduce the appearances of fine lines and wrinkles, speed up cell renewal and even out tone by reducing pigment spots that are usually associated with this age,’ explains Dr Semkova. ’People can often feel intimidated by this category of product and so introducing a retinoid product at this age should be done gradually,’ says Dr Semkova. ‘Dry, thin, mature skin can be more susceptible to redness and irritation, and combining it with a moisturiser within the first few weeks may make for a smooth introduction.’
Dr Semkova suggests starting with a low concentration product (like this one) and changing to a more concentrated one only after the skin feels comfortable with the current product. ‘The change could be done by using the more potent product twice weekly at first, with the less potent product being used on the other days of the week, and then on alternate days until you’ve completely switched,’ says Dr Semkova.
The night moisturiser for your 60s
Try: Clarins Nutri-Lumière Night Cream, (£95)
• Size: 50ml
When it comes to your night-time ritual, the richer the better where your choice of moisturiser is concerned. ‘While lighter formulas are better in the morning, richer formulations should be used at night to help skin absorb the nutrients in the products beneath,’ advises Dr Semkova. ‘Choose emollients with shea butter that will help keep moisture on the skin and form a protective film over it.’
As well as shea butter, this nourishing night cream’s formula cocoons skin in the most comforting ways to help keep dryness and dullness at bay, while you catch up on some shut-eye.
All prices correct on date of publication.