anti aging tips and tricks

asian aging process -

I don't remember where I saw the above graphic (I think on someone's random facebook awhile ago), but I love it. I will be 32 this year (I turn 32 right the month before my wedding), so aging has been on my mind lately. My mom is a 65 year old Korean woman and though she has the perm and wears weird clothes, she doesn't look quite like the Age 60-70 year old lady above. Though she is slowly getting smaller and shorter like the Age 120 lady. But, her face/skin still looks pretty good so I'm hoping to get her genes and age well. I'm not sure where the average aging process is for us half-Asians. So here are some weird and normal anti aging tips and tricks that I've heard of and/or am considering. anti aging - Retin-A - This has been a hot topic lately with my friends. Retin-A is the only thing proven to actually reduce scarring and wrinkles. From what I know, this basically makes your skin turn over faster so you're getting younger skin to the surface faster. With this comes some funkiness at the beginning of the process because, since your skin is turning over fast, you get some dryness at the beginning. I'm worried to start this before my wedding, so I might wait til after. Oh and if you're interested in this, you'll need a prescription from your dermatologist. Microdermabrasion - This is something I've been considering as an alternative to Retin-A. This is another non-surgical procedure and it basically polishes your skin to stimulate the production of collagen and skin cells. This can reduce fine lines, help acne scars and pigment irregularities. This is a procedure you can get done at some spas, but I have been researching cosmetic dermatologists or medical spas that have people who are MD's since I like the idea of going to someone with an MD. I haven't gone to a specialist yet, but in the mean time I started using Microdelivery Exfoliating Wash from Philosophy and it definitely makes my skin feel softer, but not sure if it's giving me any anti-aging benefits too.

Cheap creams - I am not a rich fancy celebrity (in case you haven't guessed that by now), so I'm not using face products that are hundreds of dollars. In fact, most of my daily face creams are from the drug store. I've been using L'Oreal Revitalift products for years (both the night and day creams) and they work great and are cheap! I don't feel like they're heavy and I like that the day cream also has SPF.  I also recently starting using L'Oreal Revitalift Miracle Blur on a daily basis over my makeup. It's supposed to blur any lines and imperfections. Plus it also has SPF and is supposed to eventually improve fine lines. Sounds good and again - cheap!

Coconut oil - We all know that little miss coconut oil is having a MOMENT right now. Everyone is gushing about it and I'm sure there are babies being named "Coconut Oil" as I write this. But as most things that are hyped up, there is some truth to it. I haven't tried the whole oil pulling yet (sounds creepy) but I've been using a little coconut oil as a moisturizer when I'm at home (I bought mine at Trader Joe's). It's pretty oily so I wouldn't suggest wearing it to bed since it'll get all over your bedding. So I'll just use it once or twice a week for a couple hours after work - Jarrod is a lucky man, right? I used it more in the winter when my skin was suuuuuper dry, but it's still helpful in the warmer months too. I know it works great as a moisturizer, but it's also an essential emollient which makes skin softer and can reduce wrinkles.

SPF - My dermatologist let me know that a dark spot on my face is sun damage, probably from high school. Wtf. After reading one million YM and Cosmo magazines in high school, I basically have avoided the sun since that time, yet the damage is already done. Rude. I continue to avoid the sun and wear sunscreen as much as possible and that is definitely a skin saver! I like this sunscreen from Neutrogena if I'm going to be outside a lot. If I'm just going to work or won't be outside too much, I just make sure that my moisturizer/makeup has some SPF.

Ancient Korean secrets - My mom was telling me how she was watching a show with a 100 year old Korean woman who had amazing skin. Her secret was slapping her face, which is pretty popular in Asian countries. This is supposed to stimulate circulation. I don't know if I want to slap myself everyday, but maybe, if it works? (Read more Asian skin secrets here.) Koreans also use this weird scrubby thing that basically has the texture of sandpaper. When I was a kid and my mom would give me a bath, at the end she would furiously scrub my back and limbs. A disgusting amount of dead skin gets sloughed off, basically revealing the fresh pretty skin beneath. If you've heard of Korean bath houses (read more here), this is what happens there. It's kinda painful but I'm so used to it. One winter when Jarrod's back was really dry, I tried it on him and I think he's still traumatized ha. But anyways, this is a great way to freshen up your body's skin (it's too rough for your face, though I will use it very delicately on my face if I have some dead skin to get rid of). I linked above to ebay where you can find the scrubbies. Even if you just use them with a light pressure, you'll get some benefits. But you aren't doing it right if you don't have disgusting clumps of skin falling off and your skin is bright red after. (It's gross but should look like this.) I think it's great, but it can definitely take some getting used to.

So there are some traditional skin treatments and maybe some random ones too. What are you skin/anti aging secrets?


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