Beauty by the Decades
Aging gracefully comes easy to some. Others fight it every step of the way. Whether you welcome your wrinkles or gag at gray hair, you can take charge and maintain optimum beauty during every stage of life.
The cosmetology industry’s revolutionary procedures for contouring the body and sculpting the face can make you look years younger. Dentists have the technology and tools to give you a million-dollar smile. Advanced skincare products, such as Retin-A, will make your complexion radiant. Add in eating and exercise trends that boost overall health and fitness, and you no longer have to walk around looking your age. Men can forestall “Father Time,” and women can mess with “Mother Nature.”
“This is extremely exciting,” says permanent-makeup specialist JoAnn Francis, of JoAnn Francis Medical Esthetics in West Palm Beach. “Actually, as we get older, we can now start looking younger.”
Anyone from graduates to grandparents can benefit from the abundance of procedures offering solutions to aging. Whether invasive (a tummy tuck), minimally invasive (liposuction) or non-invasive (CoolSculpting), there is something for every budget. We spoke with aestheticians, dermatologists and plastic surgeons to develop a guide that spells out what you can do – from your 20s to your 60s and beyond – to stay beautiful with each passing decade
Beauty regimens begin with the basics: protection, prevention and repair. Everyone we spoke to stressed the importance of sunscreen.
“The best anti-aging cream to get started with early on is sunblock,” says Dr. Ricardo Mejia, a dermatologist and hair-transplant specialist at Jupiter Dermatology & Hair Restoration.
Fountain of youth
Now that the fountain of youth has been discovered, it should be tapped. Apply an SPF 30 or higher every day and, if you are outdoors, reapply it every two to three hours. Sun exposure is cumulative, so incorporating protection into your daily routine will help you avoid skin damage from harmful UV rays. For more protection, use physical sunblocks containing titanium dioxide or zinc oxide. If you long for that Saint-Tropez tan, buy a bronzer or self-tanner. Bronzers deliver immediate color while self-tanners slowly darken your skin.
Now that the days of acne and oily skin are behind you, it’s time to step up the skincare. Products containing alpha hydroxy acid, glycolic acid, hydroquinone, vitamin A and vitamin C will build collagen and improve facial texture and tone. “People who have used vitamin A and vitamin C – their skin looks fabulous,” Dr. Mejia says
Such tried-and-true moisturizers can be purchased over-the-counter, but for best results use a physician-grade product.
Do you think crow’s feet are for the birds? Are you counting the days until the “11” lines appear between your brows? The good news is neither has to show up in the mirror. Preventative Botox can spare your face from these wrinkles that are so definitive that they’ve earned nicknames
“You can do Botox early on, even in your 20s, to prevent lines you don’t like,” Dr. Mejia says.
A sparkling set of pearly whites can do wonders for your self-esteem. Visiting the dentist twice a year for a cleaning and exam is well-advised, as is a routine of home care that includes brushing, flossing and rinsing.
“We know for a fact that people who brush and floss their teeth on a constant basis, they’re going to be in way better health,” says Dr. Michael Scherb of Jupiter Smiles.
Mineral sunscreen brush SPF 30; $57;
Available at colorescience.com
Vital C hydrating anti-aging serum; $54;
Available at various spas and salons, imageskincare.com
The years of pulling all-nighters at bars have been replaced by all-nighters at home – with babies. Maybe you finally found the one you love, married and marched into motherhood. It might be time for a mommy makeover.
A mommy makeover involves a breast augmentation and/or lift, tummy tuck and liposuction to put you back in your pre-pregnancy body. Breasts typically lose volume after childbearing and sag, and the skin around the stomach gets stretched out and leaves marks.
“The confidence boost is just tremendous,” says Dr. Andrea Hass of Hass Plastic Surgery & MediSpa in Palm Beach Gardens. “Women will often change their wardrobe, hairstyle, lifestyle – all from the positive effects of feeling better about their body.”
Take a shot
As a thirty-something, you’ll probably start to see slight ripples on your forehead and fine lines around your mouth. Not to worry – nonsurgical remedies abound. In addition to Botox, various dermal fillers are available. Among them: Juvéderm Voluma XC, Radiesse, Restylane and Sculptra Aesthetic. The injectable gels add volume to the cheek area, help smooth moderate to severe nasolabial folds (the creases that extend from the corner of your nose to the corner of your mouth) and hide marionette lines (the contours that run downward from the corners of the mouth and make you look unhappy). Light peels and microdermabrasion are other options for rejuvenating the skin and making it brighter.
You’ve invested in healthy teeth by visiting your dentist every six months; now it’s time to protect that investment. Teeth-whitening is simple and painless, and results can be achieved in less than one month. Molds are made of the lower and upper jaw, and plastic trays are formed from them. You purchase a pack of syringes filled with a type of peroxide and dispense the prescribed amount in the trays, which are inserted for a few hours each day.
Dr. Scherb of Jupiter Smiles offers Philips Zoom! Whitening, a bright light that activates a chemical put on your teeth, to kickstart the process.
“We have patients constantly asking us for whiter teeth,” he says. “The population as a whole wants to look better.” That includes men.
“The men that come in are just as vain as the women that come in – especially the 65to 70-year-olds that want the 40-year-olds,” Dr. Scherb says. “And I don’t blame them one bit.”
Ageless total retinol-a crème; $55.90;
Available at various spas and salons
Total eye concentrate; $83;
Available at clarinsusa.com
You’re in the prime of your life, both personally and professionally. You know who you are and what you want. You have evolved into a success story and are proud of it, but maybe you’re noticing some changes – ones of which you’re not so proud of.
Brown spots have popped up. Deeper wrinkles have crept in. Things are starting to sag. You’re at the point in time where you don’t quite need a facelift but could use some improvement.
See the light
Enter photofacials, a technology that gets rid of brown spots with an intense pulse light laser. The procedure lasts a half-hour, and the downtime is two to three days, meaning you look a little worse before you look a lot better.
A new technology called Meta Therapy has been touted for its tissue-activation properties that take care of deeper wrinkles. It works by employing microscopic needles that open the surface of skin, shifting the cells into activation mode. Collagen and elastin are produced, and the result is a firmer, lifted and renewed face. Ultherapy, another new technology, is high-intensity ultrasound that heats the skin and makes the muscles contract. It targets neck and jowl areas that need tightening.
“[CoolSculpting’s] saying is, ‘If you can squeeze it, we can freeze it’,” says Dr. David Rankin of Aqua Plastic Surgery in Jupiter.
CoolSculpting contours problem areas, i.e., love handles on men and outer thighs on women, by crystallizing and killing fat cells. It is a popular alternative to liposuction.
“We like it so much, I just bought my third machine,” Dr. Rankin says.
CoolSculpting also is an effective way to treat gynecomastia, or enlarged male breasts.
As if gravity doing tricks on your face and body weren’t enough, your metabolic rate is slowly going down. That can equate to weight gain. To fight it, hit the gym, find a jogging trail or enroll in an exercise class.
“I think the 40s are the best moments of every woman’s life, and you have to get ready for the best moments,” says Cristina Lelli, president of Figurella in Palm Beach Gardens.
Figurella offers its clients a series of non-impact movements to perform in a domed plastic bubble heated to 98 degrees. The temperature stimulates lipase, an enzyme that burns fat.
“A 30-minute Figurella workout can be compared to a one-hour regular workout,” Lelli says.
Whatever way you choose to sweat, stick with it three times a week.
Double Serum; $87;
Middle-age men need not enter crisis mode because of hair loss. A transplant can return a youthful mane.
Dr. Mejia, of Jupiter Dermatology & Hair Restoration, recommends the use of Propecia or Rogaine in conjunction with a transplant for better results.
Middle-age women similarly need not enter crisis mode because of menopause. Dermaplaning can combat the growth of vellus hair (peach fuzz that forms on the cheeks and chin as a result of hormonal changes), while permanent makeup can return fullness to thinning eyebrows and eyelashes.
How should our makeup change as we age?
“The whole key is when you walk into a room, you don’t want your makeup to walk into the room before you,” says Francis of JoAnn Francis Medical Esthetics. “Makeup should always enhance, not overpower.”
Opt for matte makeup instead of frosted. Use brown eyeliner instead of black. Apply lighter-color lipstick with darker-color lipliner. And set it all off with a moisturizing foundation.
“The goal is to make skin look flawless, not like you’re trying to cover it up,” Francis says.
Consider a facelift
Most plastic surgeons recommend facelifts for the 50-set because, at that age, the results will last longer and appear more natural.
“Let’s face it: In your 50s, you start to look like your parents,” says Dr. Harold Bafitis of Bafitis Plastic Surgery in Wellington.
If you don’t want to go under the knife, there is a non-traditional facelift on the horizon called the stem-cell facelift. The cutting-edge procedure is not surgical and restores facial beauty through the transplantation of stem cells and fat tissue.
Put your money where your mouth is
If your teeth are experiencing crowding, Invisalign – clear braces – can correct it. A straight set of choppers that are clean and healthy and enable you to chew and digest your food properly is essential for longevity.
Chances are your mouth will need more than whitening and straightening as you pass the half-century mark. After years of biting, chewing and drinking, the edges of your teeth probably have worn down causing a slight collapse in your jaw.
“By nature, like everything else in our body, things start looking older,” says Dr. Jay Ajmo of PGA Center for Advanced Dentistry in Palm Beach Gardens.
The answer is veneers. Thin shells of highly glazed porcelain, veneers cover the front and edge of each tooth and will return your smile to what it once was while restoring fullness around the lips.
“It’s pretty amazing what we can accomplish with veneers,” Dr. Ajmo said. “When we do this kind of work, we find that the smile really becomes such a focal point of the face. And we know from studying the face that a beautiful smile has a lot to do with the reflection of somebody’s personality.”
Intensive Illuminating Serum; $89;
Available at strivectin.com
Revision Skincare D.E.J
face cream; $120;
Available at revisionskincare.com
Max stem cell creme; $96;
Available at various spas and salons,
60s and beyond
Middle age is in the rear-view mirror, and the golden years lie ahead. To prepare for grandchildren, retirement and traveling, stay in shape. It’s your best bet for staving off back and joint pain.
Try to consume more fresh, natural food and limit the stuff in cardboard boxes. You can keep weight off by following a diet low in fat and sugar and high in protein. Avoid flavored coffee drinks, smoothies and sodas, as they are extremely caloric and have a high association with diabetes.
“When you are younger, you don’t think about your health, you just think about feeling good,” says Lelli of Figurella. “But when you are 60, aging sometimes means problems.”
Blepharoplasty (an eyelid lift) and foreheadplasty (a brow lift) frequently are sought out by those in their 60s, 70s and 80s.
It’s sane to be vain
Camera-ready has taken on a new meaning with the evolution of FaceTime and Skype and the popularity of selfies.
“People are seeing themselves much more in different ways,” says Dr. Hass of Hass Plastic Surgery & MediSpa. “It’s OK to want to look your best, and it’s completely normal to care. We put energy into selecting our clothing, our hair and makeup, our surroundings, our home and our cars. Why would we not do everything we can to feel good about [our] reflection in the mirror?”
Premier Cru L’Elixir; $99;
Available at Sephora, and US.Caudalie.com
Essential Serum; $270;
Available at skinmedica.com