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Time doesn’t stand still, so your skincare arsenal should move with the times too. Whether in your 20s, 30s, 40s or 50+, this decade-savvy guide will fast-track you to the products that will transform your complexion now – and in the future


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Skincare in your 20s and 30s

Whether you’re climbing up the career ladder, adjusting to motherhood or juggling both – being in your busiest decade ever requires quick skin-care fixes that work as hard as you do to beat the ageing effects of sleepless nights and stress. (Sleep tips, this way.)

Dull, tired skin? Skin renewal slows down when you’re stressed out, causing a pileup of dead cells. Toners and cleansers infused with glycolic and fruit acids not only restore a bright and even complexion, but prep skin for the rest of your regime too.

Your first fine lines? Invest in a serum – they contain the highest concentration of active ingredients. Look for one with a cocktail of anti-agers such as plumping collagen, hydrating hyaluronic acid and firming peptides. Future-proof skin from the sun’s aging effects with an all-important SPF sunscreen, too.

Bags and dark circles? If you don’t already, now’s the time to focus on skincare formulated for the fragile eye area. The best eye creams combine light-reflecting particles for an instant wake-up call, plus anti-aging actives to send dark circles and bags packing. Invest in a sleep spray to help get that all-important beauty sleep, too.

Skincare in your 40s

Life might be whizzing along at 100mph, but in this decade, skin is on a go-slow. Your face begins to lose its youthful plump and also shows the strain of repetitive facial expressions (hello laughter lines). Luckily, savvy skin investments mean you don’t have to ban yourself from smiling.

Wrinkle issues? Reach for retinol. Proven to boost cell turnover and collagen production, this is your dream product for firmer, smoother skin. The bonus? It erases pigmentation patches and brightens too – we could all use some of that, right?

Shrinking lips? Studies show women with full lips look younger than their years – even if they have well-earned crow’s feet or gorgeous grey hair. Cheat an age rewind with hydrating lip care to restore pillow-soft plumpness, fast.

A life-lagged complexion? Years of pollution, stress and disrupted sleep suck the life out of skin. Adding an omega-enriched facial oil to your regime helps keep cell walls healthy, allowing nutrients in and toxins out. Psst! Don’t forget skincare for your neck – you’ll thank us in 10 years’ time.

Skincare in your 50s (and beyond)

Hitting the menopause decade is likely to be the biggest skin shift of your life. Hormonal changes make skin drier, thinner and less resilient to gravity, causing all sorts of (ahem!) fun new side-effects – from age spots to the dreaded turkey neck – but there’s still time to bounce back.

Worried about sagging? Massage helps keep facial muscles toned and pumped, inflating skin from within (and it’s free!). Need an extra boost? The new generation of tightening, jawline-defining and neck-lifting peptide-packed products gives skin anti-gravity super powers. Consider an anti-aging handcream to tend to dry hands in need of additional nourishment.

Plagued by pigmentation? A fresh, unblemished complexion is a sign of youth, making those pesky brown patches a serious age give away. Although stubborn to treat, intensive vitamin C gel creams spot-reduce pigmentation over time.

Dry-skin problem solvers? Layering face creams seals in moisture and protects your skin barrier – which is more important now than ever. Think lightest to heaviest formulas, layering water-based serums under a face oil, moisturiser or rich night cream. Top with mineral SPF during the day (non-negotiable at any age).