The skin behaves differently in different ages and phases of life, and as we grow older, it begins to lose its elasticity, leading to wrinkles and fine lines. Hence, the skincare routine is tweaked, too, to address the concerns pertaining to that phase of life. In your 50s, for instance, when you are dealing with major hormonal changes, it is natural to have skin dryness, sagging, dullness, uneven texture, wrinkles, and fine lines.
Dr Jyoti Gupta, consultant dermatologist, MD dermatology, Panchsheel Enclave, Delhi, says the skin starts to age so fast that in only 1-2 years, you may start feeling that you have aged 10 years; the products that worked in your early 30s, may lose their efficacy, too.
The doctor addresses some main concerns that patients in their 50s deal with when the skin does not produce as much collagen and elastin; read on.
1. Extra dry skin: Due to the loss of skin tissue, the water retention capacity of the skin decreases, making it look dehydrated. The use of moisturisers twice every day and alpha-hydroxy acids like lactic and glycolic acid will remove dead skin as well as hydrate the tissues. In extreme skin thinning, external infusion of hydrating serums via ultrasound machines or injecting hyaluronic acid skin boosters works wonders, states the doctor.
2. Increased pigmentation: According to Dr Gupta, skin discolouration often occurs in those over 50. The skin becomes thinner and drier and is more prone to develop scaly patches. Start depigmenting using hydrating creams like combinations of glycolic/mandelic/lactic acids along with hyaluronic acid. Use sunblock to treat resistant pigment, and opt for chemical peels that target melasma, sun damage, and uneven tone or texture.
“We recommend treating your skin from the bottom up, or rather, from the lowest layer of the skin to the top. While topical skincare is great for maintaining your skin’s overall health and appearance, if you want to target signs of aging, incorporate laser treatments that get underneath the skin surface and keep it smooth, plump and healthy,” she says.
3. Unwanted facial hair: Women, as they age, see unwanted facial hair and mostly these are white or grey. Dr Gupta says a method called ‘FUE’ to extract white hair from roots may require 3-4 sessions on regular intervals. To decrease the progression of more unwanted hair, hormonal evaluation and appropriate weight management is required.
4. Skin sagging, loss of volume: It is natural that your skin will start to sag; but doing fillers will give an unnatural look to your face — like doing makeup without applying a good primer, the expert says.
“Sagging skin should be treated with HIFU and threads. Once the skin becomes ready, fillers and other boosters can be done to turn the aging clock at least five years back. Treatments like lasers, micro-needling, platelet rich plasma (PRP), and chemical peels can be done as maintenance sessions to encourage skin cell turnover. Include ingredients like hyaluronic acid, retinols, vitamin C, niacinamide, ceramides, peptides, chemical exfoliants etc., to help with skin exfoliating, tightening of the pores, improving elasticity, increasing the skin cell turnover and building more collagen.”
5. Decreased glow and dullness: This is not a single issue but a combined result of uneven skin tone, dryness and sagging, the doctor says. “Follow a healthy lifestyle — good sleep of 8 hours a day, sufficient intake of fluids, fruits, vegetables, following a rainbow diet with more coloured fruits than whites (like breads/sugar/salt), restricting smoking, alcohol intake, etc.,” she recommends.