Did you know that more than 50% of women don’t include their neck and décolleté in their skincare routine? In our 40s, even though the face may still appear good, our neck can give away the signs of age if not cared for.
In fact, in this area, there are fewer elastin fibres and a relatively low density of sebaceous glands. This means as we grow older, the skin on our neck and décolleté becomes more vulnerable to sun rays, wind, cold, pollution, lack of hydration, poor diet, gravity and other factors. As a result, lines, wrinkles and pigment spots appear sooner than on our face.
Needless to say, this area deserves extra care. If you want to step up your game, take a look at these following tips for a beautiful glow all over.
A skincare routine should start at the forehead and finish at the bust line. However, the back of the neck, often neglected, should be included, too. Take your time to cleanse thoroughly the whole area using upward gentle circular movements and make sure to get rid of any dirt and impurities that may have built up throughout the day. Also, wash your hair well before proceeding with your usual skincare because silicone and sulphates contained in shampoos and conditioners might adhere to the neck and need to be rinsed away, too.
Just as cleansing should be part of your daily skincare routine, so should moisturizing. As skin matures, one of the biggest changes is the loss of moisture, nutrients, and natural oils. Not only our face but also our neck and chest can be left feeling very dry. In our 50s, investing in a good moisturiser to keep skin supple and elastic is a must, as well as exfoliating regularly to help slough away dead skin cells on your neck and chest.
Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Cream, Dermalogica Super Rich Repair and Medik8 Ultimate Recovery Intense (dry skin)
Dermalogica Skin Smoothing Cream, Clinique Moisture Surge 72hr and La Roche Posay Nutric Intense Rich (normal skin)
Step up your game with extra firmness
As we age, the skin on the décolleté becomes thinner and may need a thicker, oil-based moisturiser. If you are looking for beauty products that will help you firm and tighten that area, go for those ones containing retinol and peptides as they may reduce fine lines, wrinkles and increase collagen production.
Two cosmetic brands, in particular, have developed products specifically for our décolleté. Strivectin TL Advanced Tightening Neck and Face Cream and Super-C Retinol Brighten and Correct Vitamin C Serum are infused with ingredients that will combat the ageing process. Also, Dermalogica Biolumin C Serum (it has an encapsulated vitamin C making it potent but not irritating on the skin) and Neck Fit Contour Serum have both been developed to combat external skin stresses acting as a shield around the neck.
Invest in a skincare tool
To maximise the effect of the products you are using, consider investing in a skincare tool. My favourite one is the Gua Sha. Used in traditional Chinese medicine, it involves scraping a flat, rounded tool (usually made from green, white jade or rose quartz) over the skin. It will help reduce inflammation, unblock pores and give a lift to the whole area. Use your Gua Sha daily – during the serum stage of your skincare routine from your forehead to your décolleté as well as the back of your neck- and make sure there is plenty of product on the skin to enable a good slip and glide.
Apply broad-spectrum sunscreen daily
Always wear a high SPF sunscreen (especially when using products containing vitamin C or Retinol). The skin around your neck and décolleté is exposed to daylight and harmful UV rays making it more susceptible to sun damage. Apply your SPF at least 30 minutes before daylight exposure. Use a specific one on your face, neck, décolleté and back of your neck, especially if you have short hair. Sun damage is the number one cause of skin ageing and increases the chances of skin melanomas. If you have significant sun damage and advanced signs of ageing on the skin in your chest and neck area, consider talking to a dermatologist who may advise you on treatments like micro-needling, laser therapy, or chemical peels to improve the tone and appearance of your décolleté.
- Avoid being in direct sunlight between 12 pm and 3 pm.
- Cover the chest area if possible with natural fabrics like linen, cotton or silk during summer months.
- Book a course of professional skincare treatments to target skin concerns and kickstart your skincare routine.
- Use an SPF 365 days a year.
- Always wash off your SPF at night to give your skin a chance to renew while you sleep