by Lydia Sarfati, Guest Contributor

Consumers are in a confusing spot with endless skincare options offered. From one counter to the next, women and men alike are being wooed by chic looking cosmetic consultants at department store counters donning the ‘latest and greatest’ cosmetics and skincare. With that said, it is no wonder why many consumers end up with a medicine cabinet full of product and no daily skincare routine.

Broken down by generation, this is the ultimate guide to your skin; how to manage the problems you skin is facing, what steps really are crucial to your daily regimen at different ages, and ultimately how to sidestep temptation and trends properly shop for what you do need. You will save a lot of money and yield great results if you take advice from a specialist with skin science knowledge.

Generation Y – Prevention

The biggest concern for members of the fast-paced, big-spending, try-anything-new Generation Y is raising awareness that a daily skincare routine is essential. Putting off a routine until mid to late 30s is a concept of the past with new knowledge which suggests that preventing skin damage needs to start as early as teen years. The best way to find out what is best for you is to visit a skincare specialist, voice your concerns, get your skin examined, and find a regimen for the specific type of skin you have – generally you will fall under the categories of acne prone, normal to dry, oily/combination for sensitive.

*Tip: If a consultation doesn’t fully address your concerns, you are not in the hands of a specialist. How will you know? Does the product recommendation specifically address the concerns you posed? You have dry skin, but are given the latest anti-aging cream? Ask questions, don’t be shy!

Follow a daily regimen that includes cleansing, toning, a serum and a moisturizer. The most important preventative care is wearing a daytime protection cream to help protect the skin against the sun and environmental aggressors. It is also important to shield the sensitive face area with sunglasses and wide-brimmed hats, especially in the summer. Fina a product line that is packed with antioxidants and protects against free radicals and be sure to schedule regular facial treatments to address deeper skin concerns.

Generation X – Retention

It is imperative that you have a daily skincare routine by now. For most skin types, the main concern at this point is retaining your skin’s elasticity and moisture. Well hydrated skin is noticeably healthier. Cleansing, toning, moisturizing and a serum are the foundation of your routine, but with additional concerns, now is the time to add an anti-aging eye cream and a renewing night cream.

In addition, this is the time begin utilizing supplements to retain youth and beauty from the inside out. A natural freeze-dried Spirulina supplement, which contains a wealth of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients is the perfect addition to any diet. It is a rich source of natural vitamin A, a critical nutrient for problem-free skin. Is is also a souce of Zinc, known to aid in proper skin function. It is no secret that Gen Xers are understandably pressed for time, but no exceptions can be made with this necessary routine.

Boomers – Reversal

The baby boomer generation, for the most part, find themselves addressing mature skin problems, including but not limited to hyper pigmentation, sun damage, fine lines and wrinkles, age spots and believe it or not – acne. To reverse the hands of time takes a hard-working peptide-rich product and treatment regimen that will act as an alternative to botox and plastic surgery. If reversing time is your concern, you must religiously stick to an at-home anti-aging program and schedule regular facials to supplement your home efforts.

Across all generations, it is most important to remember to use skincare as a tool to regenerate, nourish, and protect skin. Harsh lasers, peels and microdermabrasion treatments sound appealing to some for expected short-term results, but these quick fixers do more damage, like thinning skin and lessening elasticity, in the long term. Skin care at every age will help you look your best no matter what your generation!

About the Author

Lydia Sarfati is the CEO and Founder of Sarkli/Repechage and the Chair of CIDESCO Section USA. CIDESCO is an international beauty therapy association representing the highest standards of esthetics in more than 33 countries. Section USA strives to introduce you to the quality and prestige of a CIDESCO diploma, so that you may consider obtaining one at a certified school in the USA or abroad. For more information about CIDESCO, contact Jessi Marshall, PBA Director of Education and Industry Programs at jessi@probeauty.org.

This article was first published in the September 2013 issue of CIDESCO International Link and was reprinted with permission. To submit a request to contribute an article, click here.