When many women think of anti-aging skin care, they think of heavy-duty products geared toward women of a “certain age”. However, there are simple steps you can take at any age to protect your skin from the ravages of again. After all, how you treat your skin now will determine the skin you’ll inherit later on! Here are my top anti-aging skin care tips!

Sunscreen is a must! The single best (and simplest!) thing you can do to prevent aging is to apply sunscreen every. Single. Day. Whether the sun is shining or not, applying sunscreen helps to protect your skin from the damaging rays of the sun. Look for a sunscreen that shields both UVA (skin cancer causing) and UVB (dark spot and wrinkle producing) rays. Use a sunscreen with a minimum SPF 15, though I recommend SPF 30. For convenience, swap your face moisturizer for one with sunscreen to avoid an extra step. If you’re concerned about an ashy cast, look for a sunscreen that is zinc oxide based, as opposed to a titanium dioxide based sunscreen.

Keep it clean – Clean skin is healthy, glowing skin! Dirt, makeup, dead skin cells and impurities from the environment can build up on the skin. Throughly cleansing the skin on a daily basis can keep skin from developing a dull appearance. Plus, it allows your skin care products to penetrate deeper into the skin to do their job!

Moisturize, no matter your skin type – Nourishing skin with moisturizer not only makes it appear smoother but helps plump it up as well. Look for a moisturizer made for your skin type (dry, oily/acne, combo, sensitive) and adjust to a heavier or lighter formula as the seasons change.

Don’t Smoke - We all know by now that smoking can cause cancer, but it can also cause premature aging. Smoking breaks down the collagen in the skin creating serious wrinkles. Have you ever seen a lady with deep vertical lines around her mouth? Yeah, that’s from puckering lips around cigarettes. Just sayin’.

Put on some shades – Over time, squinting from the sun can cause serious crow’s feet around the eyes. Those are hard to come back from, so throw on a pair of shades when headed outdoors. Not only will you be protecting the skin around your eyes, but you’ll also be protecting your eyesight and looking fabulous in the process!

Up your skin care game – Simple can often be good, but when it comes to preventing aging, you need to use products with active ingredients. When shopping for skincare products, check the packaging for ingredients like antioxidants (Vitamins A, C and E, green tea, etc.) to fight free-radicals, collagen producing peptides, retinols and AHA‘s like glycolic and lactic acid to exfoliate and increase cell turnover.

Don’t neglect your neck – While giving the skin on your face some TLC, don’t forget to give your neck and décolleté the same attention! The skin on your neck can age too, so extend your facial skin care regimen to your neck and keep your décolleté well moisturized.

Add a dermatologist to your glam squad – A dermatologist can be your skin’s best friend! Folks with sensitive skin conditions aren’t the only ones who can benefit from having a dermatologist on call. A board certified dermatologist is a tremendous asset when addressing specific skin concerns, as well as for checking skin for cancerous moles and spots. Ask friends or family for a recommendation or ask your general doctor for a referral.

Do you currently practice any of these tips? What to you do to protect your skin from aging? Share your tips in the comments!