Keeping your skin looking young, beautiful and healthy requires a consistent routine with a ton of skincare products. Between your cleansers, toners, face creams, serums, masks and other treatments, chances are you will pull together the right blend of ingredients to give your skin the exact nourishments it needs. But you may also be using products made from ingredients your skin doesn’t actually need.
Using the wrong ingredients in your beauty regimen doesn’t only prevent your skin from getting the care it needs, but it may also cause your appearance to age prematurely. There are actually ingredients found in certain skincare products that can even make wrinkles worse.
Lorena Balensi, Clinical Esthetician and founder of Balensi's Institute Skin Care & Spa, told SheFinds that “the worst and most obvious offenders are sulfates.”
She explained that sulfates are sometimes used to thoroughly clean the skin, though they are harsh chemicals that usually cause damage. In fact, these sulfates are usually the same ingredients used in floor cleaners, engine degreasers and car-wash soaps.
“Not only will these irritate your skin but over time increase dryness that produces more visible fine lines and wrinkles,” Balensi said.
Balensi is not the only skincare expert who warns against sulfates. Courtney Rashidi, In-House Licensed Esthetician of Perfect Image, added, “Sulfates strip our natural oils in our acid mantle, or skin barrier, which can weaken our natural moisturizing factor and cause our skin to become overly dry, dehydrated, and sensitive.
“Lack of moisture and nutrient deficiency can decrease the skin's elasticity and disrupt the skin’s ability to regulate pH levels and proper moisture barrier function, all factors which enhance the effects of premature aging."
Despite the fact that estheticians and dermatologists know the dangers of sulfates, there are still thousands of skincare products made with the harsh ingredient. Sulfates are most frequently found in cleansers or scrubs, so pay careful attention to the ingredient lists on the back of your beauty products.
“Avoid anything that has sulfates like ‘sodium laureth sulfate’ and ‘sodium lauryl sulfate,’” Balensi advised.
The best anti-aging ingredients are always those that hydrate and replenish the skin. Keeping your skin properly hydrated allows it to repair itself from damage and helps to smooth out the appearance of wrinkles.
Look for moisturizing ingredients like hyaluronic acid, ceramides, vitamin E or coconut oil.