Y’all know that I am…ahem…well past the age of 30, right? But you know what? My skin still looks pretty good. I attribute that to the fact that the year I turned 27, I got three pieces of great advice. First, my mama informed me those little lines around my eyes were, in part, due to sun damage and that I needed to wear sunscreen on all exposed skin all the time, every day, forever and ever, amen. Or else I was going to turn into a withered old crone right before her eyes. Second, my dear friend and esthetician, FiFi started me on a skincare regime that included weekly exfoliation. She used to say it was like watering your plants, you do it once a week whether you think they need it or not. And last, a gorgeous coworker named Dottie, suggested that I try “a touch of eye cream”. Dottie was a beautifully put together woman in her 60s, who could have passed for 45, who always looked perfect and smelled delicious. If she suggested it, I was absolutely gonna do it.
So, I used those last few years of my 20s to get ready for my 30s. I’m a beauty advice junkie, so I read all the columns, I try all the stuff, but those three pieces of advice have stuck. And they’ve proven over and over again to be spot on. But why do they work? And why is it so imperative that you add these things to your routine in your 30s? Let’s discuss.
Now, I’m hoping that y’all have already been wearing sunscreen all day, every day since the beginning of time. But if you haven’t, please start immediately. It’s not too late! There are lots of reasons we can come up with to skip this step, but the sun is basically poison, you guys. We need to protect our skin. And not only do we want to avoid sun damage, which leads to premature aging, but also skin cancer, which can have much more severe consequences. Don’t believe me? Read this, from a board-certified dermatopathologist.
P.S. Having sunscreen in your makeup isn’t good enough. You actually need to add it as a step to your morning routine. Now, I know that you are rolling your eyes, because who has time for another step, (It’s your face, DO IT)? And also because you’re worried about what the sunscreen will do to the delicate skin on your face. Here are some great ones to try: https://www.rankandstyle.com/top-10-list/best-natural-facial-sunscreens/
What is exfoliation and why do you need to do it? Exfoliation is removing the oldest dead skin cells on the surface layer of your skin. You need to do it because if you have a bunch of dead skin sitting on top of your face, it can cause clogged pores, breakouts and a dull complexion. But be careful, y’all. All exfoliation methods are not created equal. The skin on your face is delicate, and you don’t want to do anything too harsh. I personally, just pour a little cleanser on a washcloth and give my face a thorough, but gentle scrub. I do this once a week to maintain a clear complexion. However, as I age, I’m noticing that I need a little extra help in this area. I visit my esthetician regularly and a couple of times a month, I use the Alba Botanica Papaya Enzyme Facial Mask, which uses fruit acids to basically dissolve all the gunk off your face. It’s amazing and you should definitely try it!
A note about what NOT to try: Stay away from harsh exfoliants, like ones with crushed up apricot pits or walnut shells and such. That stuff is really bad for your skin. Also, don’t use the ones with the little “pearls” or “beads” either. They basically never break down and live forever, poisoning the earth and the oceans.
I know that it seems like the list of products we “need” to put on our skin seems to keep getting longer and longer, doesn’t it? What with the serums and creams and lotions and toners and blah, blah, blah. And even though I want to try all the new things, all the time, I’m also super lazy and don’t want to spend a hour trying to slog through my bedtime routine. But eye cream? I will always put on eye cream. I’ve even been known to put the eye cream on over my makeup when I didn’t want to wash my face, (please don’t tell anyone, it’ll ruin my street cred).
The skin around your eyes is thinner and more delicate than elsewhere on your face and it needs special care. To keep wrinkles at bay, the area needs to stay properly hydrated. Stay away from products that contain harsh ingredients that may further dry out or irritate that special skin under your eyes. Keeping this area well moisturized can also help lessen the appearance of dark circles and those awful little bags that seem to like hanging out there. If I may toot my own horn for a moment, our Sweet Georgia Sugar eye creams are all formulated in a Shea butter base, with a specially composed combination of hydrating oils and essential oils to help you target the precise issue you are dealing with.
And because I love you guys, I’m gonna share one more piece of life-changing advice I got when I was 27…my dear friend Alex told me that 27 was the year that “all that Waffle House you eat after you go to the club starts going directly to your ass”. Friends, truer words were never spoken.