Wrinkles are a generally unwelcome addition to any part of our body, but face wrinkles are much more distressing than any other type. We can’t very easily hide our faces like we can some other parts of our bodies.

Imagine how you would feel if you could slow or even reverse this particular sign of aging. Your friends and coworkers would constantly be complimenting you on your complexion and youthful look, face wrinklesand you’d wake up every morning excited to look in the mirror. Reducing face wrinkles and looking younger can have an incredibly positive impact on how you are treated by others and on how you feel about yourself.

Now, it’s no secret that many popular actors and actresses are able to look young for an incredibly long time, and it’s also no secret how they do it. Unfortunately, you may not have been given the full picture by companies trying only to sell you products or by doctors trying to encourage expensive treatments.

If you’re serious about getting rid of or preventing face wrinkles, I urge you to get started today. Use the above information, as well as other information on this site to figure out ways that you can reverse your own signs of aging. One month (and especially one year) down the road, you’ll be very happy that you did.


Anti Wrinkle Cream: The Basics

If you’re looking for an anti-wrinkle cream, then you are part of a $10 BILLION industry, and you need to know that people will stop at nothing to sell products to you. I’ve personally looked through thousands of sites about anti wrinkle creams, and at least 80% of them do nothing more than provide rehashed reviews of products that they’re selling. So why am I telling you any of this?

Like those other sites, I’m going to give you a few recommendations for products below. First, however, I’m going to tell you what you really need to about what’s in any cream you buy. I’m also going to recommend a few creams that you can buy at your local drug store or off of Amazon, since you may not actually need the newest product that you’ve never heard of.

This is a somewhat lengthy post, but there is a fair amount of useful information on this topic, despite the superficial reviews that you find on most sites. I urge you to read our posts on Causes of Wrinkles and on how to Reduce Wrinkles if you haven’t already, as those posts really lay out the causes and effective treatment of wrinkles. Anti wrinkle creams are just a part of any prevention and treatment.

Anti Wrinkle Cream Ingredients

Any cream is only as good as the ingredients that are put into it, so you first need to know what your cream should and should not have.

  • Ingredients to Avoid. The easiest way to start is by ruling out any anti wrinkle creams that contain the following ingredients:

    1. Parrafin Wax or Petrolatum. You might as well apply crude oil to your skin, as it would have the same effect in terms of how readily your skin can breathe (very important to general skin functioning). These ingredients are cheap and therefore prevalent, and do lock in moisture effectively, but at the cost of letting your skin breathe and/or perspire (which you may think would be great to prevent but is quite necessary).

    2. Fragrances. Often combined with alcohols, fragrances can have a dehydrating effect and tend to cause allergic reactions for many people. We’d avoid them if possible, but if you find a cream that you otherwise love, fragrances are not the end of the world.

    3. Alpha Hydroxy Acids. We’re going to discuss this more in the section below, but here’s the rub (no pun intended). If you continually remove layers of skin, which is what alpha hydroxy acids tend to do, eventually your skin will not repair itself properly. For a while, you’ll have softer and nicer looking skin, but the downside is that your skin will then being to age faster than it would have otherwise.

  • Active Ingredients. The following is NOT a list of everything you should look for. Rather, these are the ingredients that many creams claim as ‘active ingredients’ and our view on each.

    1. Collagen. Any anti wrinkle cream that claims to help reduce wrinkles because it CONTAINS collagen is ripping you off. Although you need to help stimulate the repair and growth of Collagen in your skin, the actual molecule is too large to be absorbed by your skin, so putting it in a cream does absolutely nothing for you.

    2. Alpha Hydroxy Acids. Alpha Hydroxy Acids are effective, so they rightfully get a lot of attention and love among consumers and retailers. In several studies, routine use of Alpha Hydroxy Acids has been found to increase elasticity and density of Collagen in the skin. Now, we noted above that long-term use of Alpha Hydroxy Acids may have detrimental effects on the skin. This is because such acids will continually exfoliate the top layer of skin. Exfoliating will cause your skin to look smoother and younger initially, but continual exfoliation may eventually cause your skin to not be able to repair itself.

      In any case, if you do use an anti wrinkle cream with Alpha Hydroxy Acids, we strongly recommend that it have no more than 6-8% acids, and please be extra careful with exposure to sunlight, as your skin will be more sensitive than usual.

    3. Coenzyme Q10. Coenzyme Q10 is found in every cell in the human body and is used to treat various medical conditions. In general, people produce less than optimal levels of CQ10 as they age, so supplementation through an anti wrinkle cream may be useful. The 2 primary effects of CQ10 with respect to wrinkles are as follows: (a) CQ10 works as an anti-oxidant to protect the skin from the free radicals that routinely damage the skin; and (b) CQ10 is necessary for cells to maintain the energy required to produce and repair collagen and elastin. Additionally, CQ10 is small enough to be absorbed through your skin, so creams are effective. Relatively few long term studies have been done on CQ10, but so far there are very few side effects for reasonable use. CQ10 is not the MOST effective active ingredient, but it is one that a good anti wrinkle cream will have.

    4. Kinetin / Kinerase. The technical name for this growth factor is Furfuryladenine, but you will see it listed as either Kinetin or Kinerase on the ingredient list of your anti wrinkle cream. Unfortunately, very few studies have been performed on this ingredient. The few studies that have been performed tend to show that Kinetin may be the single most effective ingredient yet at reducing wrinkles, and no major side effects have been found. Still, because so few studies have been done, it’s hard to know exactly how effective Kinetin is. We and many we know have found creams with this ingredient to be quite effective. Kinetin is an anti-oxidant, which will help in preventing further wrinkles, but the jury is still out on how it reduces wrinkles, with the current research focused on its ability to cause the skin to retain moisture and increase Collagen production.

    5. Copper Peptides. For some time now, copper peptides (a copper atom bound to a piece of a protein) have been used to treat scars, wounds, and certain other medical conditions. It’s only more recently that their potential use in anti aging creams has been explored and marketed. Without going into too much detail, copper peptides play a key role in breaking down large and abnormal Collagen molecules (the kind that cause wrinkles) and also in promoting growth and repair of normal Collagen molecules. (This is an oversimplification, as copper peptides actually do much more than this). In addition, copper peptides generally promote healing of the skin and protection from free radicals, so use in connection with any type of exfoliation can often be beneficial. At least one study has shown copper peptides to be more effective at reducing wrinkles than Treinoin (below), and copper peptides have very few side effects if not overused.

    6. Vitamin A / Retinol. Retinol is a form of Vitamin A that, if administered to the skin in adequate amounts, can cause the skin to produce Retinoic Acid (aka Treinoin). Retinoic Acid increases production of Collagen and generally smooths out the skin (see below, as this is the most tested and proven active ingredient). Many users have very good results with anti wrinkle creams that are high in Retinol. However, many users also experience skin irritation from products that are sufficiently high in Retinol. Such sensitivity is not permanent, however, so it’s generally safe to try anti wrinkle creams containing Retinol until you find out that you are sensitive.

    7. Tretinoin. Tretinoin is a Vitamin-A derivative (Retinoic Acid) closely related to Retinol, but it deserves its own category, as it is the only topical treatment approved by the FDA to treat wrinkles. Tretinoin is not available over the counter, so you’ll have to go with Retinol if you don’t want to get a prescription. However, if you are able to get a cream with Treinoin, rest assured that it’s probably the best product you can find. Retin A is a very well known product containing Tretinoin.

For our money, we recommend active ingredients in the following order: (1) Copper Peptides, (2) Kinetin, (3) Tretinoin (mostly due to price and necessity of obtaining prescription), (4) Retinol, (5) Coenzyme Q10, (6) Alpha Hydroxy Acid. Below are a few product recommendations along these lines (coming soon):

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What is a Laser Facial?

The 2 questions you’re probably most interested in are will a laser facial actually work to repair my skin or make me look younger and what are the side effects… And if you’re not asking yourself these questions, well, you probably should be. We’ll address these questions below, but you should first have a basic understanding of what a laser facial actually is.

Laser Facial Treatments are pretty much exactly what they sound like (a laser is used to treat the skin on the face). There are a few types of laser treatments that you’re likely to read or hear about, but in general, all 3 types are used in conjunction with one another. These 3 types of laser facial treatment are as follows:

  • Ablative. This is the primary type of treatment used in any laser facial. The primary goal here is twofold: (1) First, the outer layer of the skin is removed (essentially ‘zapped’ away), and (2) Second, the skin is heated in such a way as to stimulate Collagen production.

  • Non-Ablative. Non-ablative treatments are ablative minus the first step (removal of the outer layer of the skin).

  • Fractioned. Like ablative lasers, fractioned lasers remove a portion of the skin. However, fractioned lasers penetrate more deeply into the skin, thereby disrupting old and damaged tissue and causing the skin to work harder to repair itself. In general, fractioned lasers will only be used on small areas of the skin, as they tend to cause the surrounding area to also work harder to rebuild itself.

The description above is an oversimplification, an we really urge you to read more and question your doctor in order to better understand the processes involved. As noted, the 3 types of laser treatment are typically all used, with ablative lasers being the primary basis of treatment.

So what are the benefits of a Laser Facial?

We won’t get into all of the possible specific benefits (such as repairing scars, sun spots, etc.), but in general, laser facial treatments can treat a variety of skin conditions, including many types of wrinkles. (Note specifically, however, that sagging skin and very deep wrinkles are generally not treatable). Here’s what you can expect:

If your laser facial treatment includes use of an ablative laser, many minor wrinkles and/or blemishes will be removed, at least temporarily (some blemishes and wrinkles may take several treatments). As you read above, an ablative laser will actually remove the outer layer of skin, so any wrinkle or blemish that does not penetrate below that layer will be removed.

In addition, your skin will begin to heal itself by producing more collagen, thereby tightening the remaining skin and reducing the appearance of lines and wrinkled. After several sessions, your skin will likely begin to appear much younger and healthier. At this point, you probably can’t wait, but please do keep reading below for the side effects.

Side Effects of a Laser Facial

Deciding to get a laser facial is no small decision, and the following are side effects that you should carefully consider before committing to any treatment (this list is not meant to be exclusive, as there may be other side effects that we don’t mention):

  1. Redness and Sensitivity. Above all else, your skin is going to be very sensitive, somewhat sore, and quite red/pink for some time after your treatment. You will likely experience some pain for the first week or so, and your skin will be red, swollen, and sensitive for several weeks to several months. You cannot spend any extended time in the sun during this period, and you will not look your best until your skin has recovered (remember that you’ve actually zapped off a layer or two of skin). If you consider nothing else, make sure that you are ready to accept this time period for recovery.

  2. More Limited Risks. Although a fairly safe procedure, you should also discuss with your doctor certain other risks. Such risks include: (1) change in pigmentation (color) of the skin, (2) change in texture of the skin (lumps, etc.), (3) burns and scars, and (4) infection. We’re really not trying to scare you with this list, but there are risks to any procedure of this type, and above all else, you want a doctor who is experienced and aware of the risks.

  3. Emptying of Purse.
    Creative Commons License photo credit: Tracy O
    A bit of a joke, but if you don’t already know, laser facial treatments are expensive (often between $3,000 and $5,000). Not much to say about this – if it’s really important to you and you can afford it, then the cost is probably not going to be a huge drawback.

We hope that this brief synopsis has been useful, and please leave any questions you may have in the comments section below. Any major treatment such as a laser facial should not be taken lightly, but it can have its time and place.

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Face Exercises

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Wrinkles Treatment

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Eye Wrinkle Cream

Do you know what’s in your Eye Wrinkle Cream? Our eyes are the most sensitive part of our face. It’s a large part of the reason why the skin around our eyes is likely to be the first place we notice wrinkles. And once noticed, it’s a hard change to forget, as many of us [...]

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Causes of Wrinkles

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Reduce Wrinkles

I’ve spent a lot of time vainly trying not to get older, and I’ve spent a lot of time studying how to reduce wrinkles. So many of the things I do now are things that I wish I had started when I was actually young, but in any case, I’ll now settle just for looking [...]

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