Great Beauty: Skincare Tips to Stop the Clock

That old saying, "Black don't crack," is definitely rooted in reality. Black women hardly seem to age at all (just ask Diahann Carrol or Ruby Dee). As a result of the natural oiliness of our skin, African American women are less likely to develop fine lines and wrinkles. Still, there are always more things we could do to keep our complexion looking youthful, radiant, and supple, longer. Here are ten ways to preserve your youthful glow...
ESSENCE.COM Jul, 26, 2010

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Use lukewarm water to wash your face (the warmth opens up your pores, allowing for a deeper clean), but always rinse with cold water—it tightens your pores and tones your skin, giving your complexion a firm, youthful appearance. Pro tip: For the same effect, try the cold water splash after a hot shower, too.

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Yes, Black women DO need sunscreen! We are just as susceptible to skin cancer from the sun’s harmful rays—plus, sunburn can lead to dreaded hyperpigmentation (dark spots). Every day, apply an oil-free, lightweight SPF like Clinique City Block Sheer SPF 25 ($17.50) under your makeup. It takes two seconds to shield your skin from UVA/UVB rays and maintain your pristine complexion. Also, the great news about Clinique City Block Sheer sunscreen is that it doubles as a primer, keeping your makeup from smudging, smearing, or fading during the day.

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This may seem like a no-brainer, but always put your hair up in a bun or ponytail at night. Your strands are loaded with natural oils and product, which can cause your face to break out if you sleep on them.

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Dead skin cells sitting ontop of the skin can result in clogged pores, breakouts, and a dull complexion. Slough off cells and reveal the glowing, new skin underneath with a monthly glycolic peel. No need to make a pricey spa appointment—Origins Brighter By Nature High-Potency Brightening Peel ($38) comes with forty glycolic-soaked pads that leave skin looking smooth and radiant in seconds.

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When it comes to face makeup—ie, foundation, concealer and powder—it’s worth it to spend the money on a department store brand. Foundation sits on your face all day; you don’t want to slather on a cheap product that clogs your pores and irritates your skin! We’re huge fans of Bobbi Brown, MAC, Lancome and Giorgio Armani foundations, concealers and powders.

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The key to a wrinkle-free face is moisturized skin! Even if you have an oily complexion, it’s important to use a daily moisturizer to keep skin looking and feeling supple and smooth. Philosophy’s award-winning Hope in a Jar Original Formula Moisturizer ($38) is non-greasy, lightweight, and formulated for all skin types.

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Facial massage helps improve the circulation in your skin, keeping it looking rosy, fresh, and healthy. Working from the center of your face to the hairline, use the pads of your fingers to create small, circular motions all over. To create some slip, dip your fingers in a lightweight moisturizer, first.

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The undereye area is one of the first areas to show signs of aging, so incorporate a great eye cream into your skincare regimen, asap. Bliss All Around Eye Cream ($28) de-puffs and moisturizes skin, while lessening the appearance of fine lines with soft-focus diffusers and fancy collagen boosters.

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Not only should you drink tons of water to keep your skin hydrated, you should also spritz your face with H2O a couple times a day. This acts as an instant hydrator and, in a pinch, it helps refresh your makeup! Try Evian Mineral Water Spray ($10).

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No matter your skin type, your T-zone can get super-oily by mid-day. Don’t douse it with powder (this can clog pores, leading to breakouts). Instead, take a hint from professional makeup artists, and lay a tissue across your face, press, and remove. This soaks up the oil and mattifies your face in seconds. Either use standard Kleenex-type tissue, or blotting papers like Boscia Rose Blotting Linens ($10).