Anti-aging products have been misinterpreted for years. While thet have been targeted toward the 40-and-older set, it's imperative to start your prevention regimen decades before. Waiting until the damage is done is like applying sunscreen to lobster red burns. Instead, add skin savers like antioxidants and retinol to your routine in your late 20s. This is the time when your skin starts to form lines around the eyes and mouth and sun damaged dark spots are starting to make their mark, but skin is still young enough to fight radicals and hold elasticity. We spoke with dermatologist Dr. MacGregor on simple additions to make to our morning and nighttime regimens to keep our skin forever young.

In the Morning
"Add a topical antioxidant in the morning and layer moisturizing sunscreen on top," says Dr. MacGregor. Antioxidants-vitamin C, zinc, and green tea just to name a few-fight off free radicals that kill skin cells and cause damage. Because sun damage is one of the biggest free radicals, applying a mix of antioxidants and sunscreen creates a shield on the skin. Opt for light sunscreens or makeup with SPF for optimum results. And don't forget the neck and hands where aging occurs first.

Before Bed
"In the evening, gently cleanse the skin and add in an over-the-counter retinol with your moisturizer," says Dr. MacGregor. (Opt for a stronger prescription formula later down the road). The multi-taskers work to increase cell turnover, promote collagen and decrease pore size which in turn prevents blemishes. Youth in a bottle. "Retinoids must be applied at night because most are inactivated by light."

"If you have especially sensitive skin and know that you can't tolerate retinoids, try a mild exfoliation with a glycolic cleanser or the Clarisonic brush and apply a great moisturizer before bed."

What you don't need?
Products that promise to add collagen back into the skin. "Topically applied collagen will not penetrate to the dermis of the skin and form new collagen," says Dr. MacGregor. "Focus on products that repair sun damaged skin and build new collagen like vitamin C and retinoids." That's all you need.

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