Skin Care Blogs

Every Preventative Skincare Product You Need In Your Routine

Want to maintain plump, wrinkle-free skin that’s youthful and dewy for as long as possible? It’s doable as long as a preventative skincare routine is in place. Most skin experts recommend starting a preventative skincare routine in your 20s—the younger, the better, to stave off the hands of time.

Around age 25, collagen production decreases by about one percent each year, and the rate at which skin cells naturally turnover slows, too. Together with mounting environmental damage, these factors put the skin in a compromised state. Keep in mind that the skin continually ages and evolves. What is considered preventative at one point may be deemed corrective later on, so adapting your regimen to what the skin needs will help maintain its health and vitality for the long term.

What is Preventative Skincare?

Preventative skincare is a proactive approach to preventing lines and wrinkles from developing. “It’s far better to prevent a wrinkle than to treat it after you have it,” says Dr. Joshua Zeichner, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City.

It’s normal to see skin changes, like the formation of fine lines and wrinkles and even a loss of firmness, due to decreased collagen production, explains Dr. Marina Peredo, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City. Sunspots and dark spots also start to crop up, but just like other age-related changes, those too benefit from proactive skin care. “You won’t be able to reverse the fine lines and wrinkles that have formed completely, but anti-aging skincare products can reduce their appearance,” she says. Cleansing and moisturizing may be a given to keep skin clean, smooth, and healthy, but there’s more to a preventative skincare routine than just the basics. Retinol, vitamin C, sun protection, and regular exfoliation are equally important.

“When designing a proactive skincare routine, you want to protect the skin from the environment in the morning and repair the skin from any environmental exposures in the evening,” says Dr. Zeichner.

Every Preventative Skincare Ingredient You Need to Know About


Low-strength over-the-counter retinol is a good starting place for jumpstarting collagen production and maintaining healthy skin. Dr. Peredo calls retinol a must-have that speeds up the cell turnover process to diminish the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and dark spots. Plus, if acne breakouts are an issue, regularly using retinol will help control them, too. However, vitamin A-based products can be somewhat irritating at first, so choose a formulation and concentration that’s compatible with your skin.

Our Product Pick:

Using SkinCeuticals Retinol 0.5 Refining Night Cream at night helps hinder the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles with a blend of encapsulated retinol and botanical extracts, which soothe skin and limit the unwanted side effects commonly associated with retinol, like dryness, redness, and flaking.


The sun is offender number one in aging skin. That’s why it’s crucial to wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30 every day, no matter the weather. In addition, Dr. Peredo says, “using sunscreen helps prevent sun damage down the line.” For an extra layer of protection, make a habit of wearing a wide-brimmed hat when outdoors and sun-protective clothing, too. SPF-packed makeup is another option for color coverage plus protection, especially when the sun is strongest during the summer months.

Our Product Pick:

Perfect for daily sun protection for the face, neck, and body, PCA Skin Weightless Protection Broad Spectrum SPF 45 is a lightweight formula that defends against UV damage, is infused with caffeine to combat free radical damage and bisabolol to calm and soothe the skin. Sheer enough for all skin tones, it absorbs quickly and lends a touch of hydration to the skin, too.


Often, one of the first age-related changes seen in the skin is a loss of moisture, which happens as the oil glands begin to slow down production. Using a moisturizer morning and night helps slow down the appearance of aging skin. “Moisturizing and hydrating the skin temporarily plumps the skin as well,” Dr. Peredo shares.

Our Product Pick:

Dry skin doesn’t stand a chance against Sunday Riley ICE Ceramide Moisturizing Cream. This lightweight moisturizer provides much-needed moisture with a ceramide-rich formula that works to strengthen the skin’s barrier—a must for locking in moisture and keeping the skin strong and resilient.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is one of the best, all-around antioxidant ingredients to incorporate into any preventative skincare routine. “It’s a great ingredient because it protects against free radical damage and helps brighten dark spots,” says Dr. Peredo. The potent vitamin also works wonders at reversing the signs of sun damage and protecting against free radical damage. However, Dr. Peredo offers this piece of advice: steer clear of vitamin C-based products with synthetic fragrance, parabens, or formaldehyde of any kind, which can all be very damaging to the skin.

Our Product Pick:

For vitamin C to be effective, the formula needs to be stable, like in Revision Vitamin C Lotion 30%. This ultra-moisturizing lotion helps brighten dull-looking skin while boosting the skin’s natural moisture levels with squalene and antioxidant protection from vitamin E and coenzyme Q10.

Eye Cream

You may blame sleepless nights for tired-looking eyes, but the truth is the skin under and around the eyes is the thinnest on the face, which is why the eyes are quick to show their age. “Eye creams can help reduce fine lines and wrinkle as well as increase skin elasticity,” says Dr. Peredo. To make the most of your preventative skincare efforts, look for a de-puffing cream to help blur the look of puffiness, fine lines, and dark shadows while helping to plump the skin.

Our Product Pick:

Gel-based under-eye creams help take down puffiness and feel cooling to the skin. Dermalogica Awaken Peptide Eye Gel is loaded with skin-brightening caffeine along with peptides to take down the appearance of tired-looking, puffy eyes so that it looks like you had a restful night’s sleep.

Lifestyle Factors in Preventative Skincare

Everything ‘bad’ that you do to your skin when you’re younger—think sunbathing, drinking too much, poor dietary habits, and not getting enough shut-eye—will surface later on in life. That’s why it’s a good idea to cut out all bad habits before they become too hard to quit. There’s no room in a preventative skincare routine for smoking, a pro-inflammatory diet, heavy drinking, and neglecting to take care of your skin and body. “Wearing sunscreen, practicing good hygiene, eating healthy, and drinking lots of water are all great ways to start taking care of your skin,” says Dr. Peredo.

Should You Consider Preventative Botox?

Regular Botox injections are proven to keep wrinkles and fine lines at bay. But you don’t need to have deeply etched in lines to start treatment. Dr. Zeichner says once lines have set in at rest, unfortunately, skincare products alone may not be enough. “That’s when in-office treatments, like Botox, may be necessary,” he shares.

So, is preventative Botox a must? Dr. Peredo says those in their mid-to-late 20s and early 30s should start considering it for preventive measures. “The earlier you start, the fewer injections you will need later on,” she adds. That said, too much Botox starting from your 20s may actually age your face more quickly. This is because excessive Botox injections will weaken the muscles of your face, causing them to become flatter over time and the skin on top to sag. Therefore, preventative Botox should be approached conservatively. And with safety in mind, Dr. Peredo urges doing your research properly when choosing who to inject your Botox. “If you go to a licensed physician who is experienced in doing [Botox] injections, there shouldn’t be a problem. The danger comes when you don’t know who is injecting and what has been injected.”

Elise Minton Tabin

Elise Minton Tabin is an award-winning beauty journalist, editor, and beauty expert with more than 16 years of experience. She previously held the title of Executive Beauty Editor at NewBeauty magazine, where she reported on beauty, plastic surgery, anti-aging, health and wellness. She was also instrumental in the launch of the beauty supplement brand Hush & Hush. A self-professed beauty junkie and retinol and sunscreen pusher, Elise knows what’s new, what works and who’s the best to go for every procedure under the sun. Follow Elise on Facebook, Instagram, and on her beauty blog,