There’s no need to resort to Botox – we sample plant- and nutrient-based creams that significantly slow the ageing process.
These are our best defence against damage done to skin by free radicals, those unstable molecules that destroy collagen and elastin. Vitamin C improves pigmentation and skin tone, vitamin E has wonderful moisturising and skin-protective properties, and vitamin A stimulates production of collagen and elastin in the skin.
2. Coconut oil
Coconut oil has amazing emollient, rehydrating and elasticising effects on skin, and is highly effective in minimising fine lines. It is loaded with vitamin E and fatty acids which are anti-fungal, antioxidant and antibacterial.
3. Manuka honey
Manuka honey is rich in humectant compounds which promote the absorption and retention of moisture, thus keeping skin hydrated and supple. It is also an exceptional antibacterial and antioxidant agent.
4. Alpha lipoic acid
This is a ‘universal antioxidant’, meaning it is soluble in both water and oil, so it can protect all parts of a cell from free radical damage. It also fights inflammation, diminishes fine lines, and prevents new ones from forming.
This is short for dimethylaminoethanol, a substance found naturally in nerve tissues of the body. Preliminary studies show DMAE reduces skin sagging while firming, toning and smoothing lines. Dr Nicholas Perricone, author of The Wrinkle Cure, calls it “an instant anti-ageing facelift”.
These amino acids enhance collagen production, smooth fine lines and reduce the appearance of crow’s feet. They also inhibit enzymes that break down the skin’s support structures, and so prevent future wrinkles.
7. Rosehip oil
Rosehip oil is packed with antioxidants, including beta-carotene and lycopene, which protect, nourish and repair skin, and is a rich source of essential fatty acids that are vital for skin health. Rosehip oil also contains a natural source of vitamin A, known as trans-retinoic acid, which fights the effects of ageing.
A University of Michigan study showed that pomegranate seed oil stimulates keratinocyte production, which encourages skin regeneration. Pomegranates are abundant in vitamins C and B5, and powerful antioxidants known as polyphenols. The oil is also a potent source of punicic acid, an omega-5 fatty acid which keeps skin looking youthful.
This is a member of the flavonoid family - those pigments that give fruits and vegetables their fabulous colours. It has powerful antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and toning properties, and dramatically improves skin cell functioning.
This plant has been used in West Africa for centuries for its high nutritional value and skin benefits. French scientists recently found that okuru seeds contain peptides that minimise the appearance of expression lines.
Eat yourself younger
To minimise the effects of ageing, eat plenty of fruit and vegetables - alfalfa sprouts, beet greens, capsicum, broccoli, chillies, spinach, red cabbage, tomatoes, apples, apricots, berries, cherries, kiwifruit, pears and red grapes. Drink herbal and green teas and lots of purified water to flush out toxins. "Skin is a matrix of proteins, water, and fats that needs a non-processed food supply for replenishment," says dermatologist Dr David Colbert, author of The High School Reunion Diet. Colbert recommends eating almonds for their skin-plumping fats and vitamin E, dark chocolate with a cacao content of 72 percent or higher for damage-fighting antioxidants, and blueberries for their collagen-protecting vitamin C.
Apply a light oil, like rosehip, to skin before starting to massage. Your strokes should begin at the lower area and always work upwards.
* About an inch from where your upper and lower jaw join, there's a slight indentation. Massage this area for a slow count of 30.
* Gentle pinching is boosts circulation. With thumbs and fingertips, pick up small sections of the skin with quick, light movements.
* Place your fingertips at the temples. Gently make large circles.
* Run your fingers across your forehead, away from an imaginary line down the middle of your face.
* Gently lift your ears upward, backward and forward in a circular motion.
* Place little fingers at nose, index fingers at temples and middle fingers between eyebrows. Gently lift up and outward.
* Spread your fingers through your hair and massage your scalp. Use your thumbs to massage the hollows at the back of your neck where the spine and the skull join.
D-I-Y: Natural wrinkle remedy
Combine 2 tablespoons of organic Greek yoghurt with ½ tablespoon of manuka honey, and 3 vitamin E capsules. Apply mixture to your face and leave for 15 minutes. Rinse off. The combination of the yoghurt’s lactic acid and the antioxidant benefits of manuka honey and vitamin E will naturally tighten and tone your skin.
Anti-agers we love …
Eminence Organics Coconut Age Corrective Moisturiser (http://www.eminenceorganics.com.au/)
Korres Quercetin and Oak Antiwrinkle Cream (http://www.kitcosmetics.com.au/)
Comvita Replenishing Night Lotion (http://www.comvita.com/)
Rose Hip Vital Certified Organic Cold Pressed Rosehip Oil (http://www.rosehipvital.com.au/)
Weleda Pomegranate Firming Eye Cream (http://www.weleda.com.au/)
Trilogy CoQ10 Booster Serum (http://www.trilogyproducts.com/)
Lapurete Nature’s Botox Alternative Okuru Resurrection Night Crème (http://www.lapurete.com.au/)