Anti-Aging Myths Debunked by Dr. Pimple Popper

There’s no shortage of anti-aging advice on the Internet — but how do you separate fact from fiction? With a little help from our founder, Sandra Lee, MD (aka Dr. Pimple Popper), we’re debunking a few of the most common myths about anti-aging.

Signs of aging including fine lines, wrinkles and hyperpigmentation

#1 Skin aging is strictly genetic

There’s been a lot of research in recent decades on how much of skin aging is genetic — and how much is related to our environment and lifestyle. The verdict? It’s both. Our DNA determines a host of important characteristics that affect how we age, like:

For better or worse, we can’t change what we’ve inherited from our parents. But fascinating studies of identical twins have shown that changing our lifestyle can have a profound effect on the way our skin ages. That’s because a significant amount of skin aging is due to extrinsic (aka outside) factors, like:

Wearing sunscreen every day and making healthier choices has a measurable impact on how old you look.

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#2 Anti-aging skincare is for older people

We’ve said this before, but it bears repeating: the best time to start using well-aging skincare is before you start to see any signs of aging. That’s because skin function and structure starts to diminish earlier than we notice.

By the time we’re in our twenties, for example, our natural rate of cell turnover and collagen production both slow down. At the same time, the UV exposure we’ve accumulated starts to damage cellular DNA.

So which well-aging products should you start using, and how early? According to Dr. Lee, you can start using retinol — which helps slow down collagen breakdown — in your twenties (or earlier, if you’re using it for acne treatment). Incorporating chemical exfoliants like salicylic and/or glycolic acid can help even skin tone and prevent dullness.

Don’t forget about the most important well-aging product: sunscreen. It’s never too early to start wearing SPF on a daily basis, says Dr. Lee, since UV damage is a primary cause of premature aging.

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#3 Anti-aging skincare is expensive

One of the most pervasive rumors in the anti-aging skincare world is that you have to spend a fortune on cult creams and serums to get results. The truth is, well-aging products don’t have to break the bank — they just need to incorporate a few key ingredients in high-quality formulas.

Stick to brands with a good reputation online and on social, from trusted and well-reviewed companies. Dermatologist brands (like SLMD!) are usually a smart bet, since they’re presumably backed by medical know-how.

Another common misconception about well-aging skincare centers around quantity: the more active ingredients, used more frequently, the better. But it’s not true, says Dr. Lee: more does not necessarily mean better. Piling on too many potent ingredients can be irritating, which could damage your skin barrier and actually make you look older.

Start with a simple routine: cleanse, treat, moisturize, and tailor your treatment to your needs. It’s OK to combine a couple of treatments at the same time, but go slowly — and as always, listen to your skin.

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Try: SLMD Salicylic Acid Cleanser, Retinol Serum, Facial Moisturizer.

Dr Sandra Lee

Dr. Lee's Last Word

There are a lot of myths about how our skin ages — and what we can and can’t do about it. The truth is, the best way to keep your skin looking youthful as long as possible is to wear sunscreen every day. Incorporating retinol and keeping your skin moisturized will also help ward off signs of premature aging.

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