The Best Skincare Routine for 40s

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Growing up gives some of us creeps, your skin is aging. But with some good TLC and the best skincare routine for 40s, you could really get the most out of your skin.

Who says you can’t look fab at 40?

The thing is, what worked for your skin when you were 20 or 30 may not work now you’re 40.

Your skincare routine has to change just as your senses of fashion and everything else that comes with growing up.

Yes, skincare in your 40s means new products and a new routine.

“From their mid-40s to late-40s, many women may begin to feel their skin becoming drier, as they approach menopause,” says Dr. Presley, a dermatologist.

This is caused by a drop in estrogen levels. “The resultant effect is your skin would become thinner, drier, and less elastic” according to Dr. Presley.

Consequently, your skin starts to sag.

Decades of sun exposure and oxidative stress cause fine lines and hyperpigmentation to appear on your face.

And the wrinkles?

Dr. Kristine says, “beyond the age of 30, we have one percent less collagen synthesis, and we start to lose a teaspoon of fat in our face every year.”

This loss of fat support makes your skin wrinkle.

Now that you know what is happening to your skin, let’s see how we can help you get your best skin through a simple skincare routine.

Related: The Best Skincare Routine for 30s 2022

The Best Skincare Routine for 40s: Morning routine

If you are keen on skincare then you probably know there’s a morning routine and a night routine.

You have to take care of your skin before you step out and before you go to bed.

1. Cleanser

You’ll start off with a cleanser. You’d want a product that won’t strip your skin of its natural oils.

So, use a gentle, soothing cleanser with ingredients like aloe vera to get rid of any dirt or other things that have built up over the night.

You can use a cream or milk formula to get a good clean, but not hurt your skin.

2. Serum

When you’re in your 40s, your skin makes less sebum, which makes you more vulnerable to things like pollution.

You need to add an antioxidant-rich serum to your skincare in your 40s, to fight free radicals.

‘Look for serums that have collagen-boosting peptides in them. These peptides are building blocks for new collagen and help fibroblasts work better.

Vitamin C and copper will also help the collagen-forming process. 

But don’t buy serums that have both copper and vitamin C in them, because they work against each other,” says Dr. Presley.

3. Moisturizer

Moisturizing is an important step in your skincare routine. Moisturizers seal moisture into your skin.

Choose a moisturizer that is rich in antioxidants and emollients.

4. Wear sunscreen

Sun damage causes most of the signs of aging we see – fine lines, dark patches, and textural changes.

Even at 40, an SPF 30 sunscreen can save you from sun damage. 

Apply it to all exposed skin areas like your face, neck, and décolleté.

The best skincare routine for 40s: Night routine

While morning skincare routines are for protection, nightly routines are for restoration and rejuvenation.

1. Cleanser

You’ll start by removing your makeup and any dirt on your face.

As you get older, your skin becomes drier and more sensitive. Always look for moisturizing ingredients even in your cleansers.

Oil cleansers may now fit your skin type since they are so mild when it comes to removing makeup.

If you’re concerned about oil clogging your pores, try removing your makeup with an oil first, then wiping away any residue with a quick swipe of micellar water.

Related: How to Reduce Wrinkles Under the Eyes

2. Exfoliate

Your skin is sensitive now, so you need mild products for exfoliation. Avoid abrasive products as this may be too harsh for your skin.

If you scrub your face with your hands, you may end up thinning your skin even more and making your skin more sensitive, which is very hard to fix.

Exfoliating once or twice a week gets more oxygen and nutrients to your skin, which makes your skin look better.

So if you want to get in on this but don’t want to scrub your skin, use an acid-based exfoliator.

3. Use a night cream

Choose a night cream rich in skin-nourishing ingredients to promote cell repair and prevent senescence.

You should use a thick night cream enriched with hyaluronic acids to help seal moisture in your skin.

If you want to take things to the next level, think about switching your night cream for an overnight mask a few times a week.

You can use it to get the most out of those precious hours of sleep. 

The formula you choose can also change based on the season.

In the winter, Dr. Brown says “use a hydrating mask once a week if you have dry skin that is irritated by low temperatures and low humidity levels.”

On sunny days, use a brightening mask.

“Topical agents like tranexamic acid, vitamin C, E, mushroom extract, azelaic acid, or arbutin would be wonderful hero ingredients to look for when choosing the correct mask,” he adds.

How to care for your skin at 40

Having a skincare routine is key, but doing it wrong could ruin everything. Plus, there are tips and secrets you must practice to achieve healthy skin.

1. Be consistent with your skincare routine

Even if you use the best and most expensive skincare products on the market, if you only use them once in a while, they won’t help your skin.

Follow the routine we’re sharing with you consistently. And if you have special skin needs, see a dermatologist.

2. Go for regular skin checks

Even though you’re trying to keep your skin young, the most important thing is to protect your skin from cancer.

You should start getting full-body checks from a dermatologist every year, or more often if your family has had skin cancer or you have a history of sun damage.

“Now is the time to seek a baseline skin assessment from your dermatologist to ensure that there are no early indicators of precancerous skin abnormalities,” Dr. Kristine advises.

It’s far better to detect something early on than to face the consequences afterward.

Related: 20 Best Foundation for Aging Skin

3. Build-on Vitamin C

Vitamin C helps prevent dark spots and supports collagen production.

“Vitamin C is a fantastic skin brightener with firming properties since it stimulates collagen and also provides antioxidant and UV protection,” Dr. Brown says.

Should I use retinol in my 40s?

If you’ve never used retinol, your skin has to get used. So you can’t rush into it.

Start with a percentage of 0.3 and use it no more than 1-2 times each week.

You may go to 0.5 percent and eventually to 1% as your skin develops tolerance but not on the first application.

According to Dr. Brown, “serums containing both retinol and vitamin C are ideal for people in their 40s due to their anti-aging properties.”

The best skincare routine for 40s- FAQs

Here are the commonly asked questions about the skincare routines for the 40s. We have provided the answers you need.

Is it too late to take care of my skin at 40?

It’s never too late to start taking care of your skin even dermatologists say so.

No matter how old you are, you can start taking care of your skin now.

Follow the skincare routine we’ve shared with you to get the best 40s skin ever.

How can I get flawless skin in my 40s?

  • Use the right cleanser for your skin.
  • At night, use a retinol-enriched serum.
  • Moisturize
  • Wear sunscreen at all times.
  • Use a night cream.

What does Retinol do for your skin?

Retinoids help to reduce fine lines and wrinkles by boosting collagen production.

They also encourage the growth of new blood vessels in the skin, which makes the skin look better.

Another benefit is that it fades age spots and softens rough patches of skin.

What is retinol uglies?

Some individuals experience peeling, redness, and irritation when they first begin using retinol.

The responses could be so severe that the phrase used to describe the list of side effects has been called “retinol uglies.”

Which is better hyaluronic acid or retinol?

If you want to hydrate dry skin use hyaluronic acid, however, retinol promotes healthier skin by increasing collagen formation.

They offer various advantages that may be combined for better results, but you must be cautious about the particular formulas you use.

Related: How to Improve Skin Elasticity in 11 Ways


When you turn 40, a whole lot will change about your skin. But brace yourself up, adopt a skincare routine.

The best skincare routine for the 40s will not only replenish what has been lost but protect your skin from losing so much so fast.

Follow the routine these experts have recommended and watch your skin turn around. The 40s have nothing on you!

If you still have questions about this article? Kindly drop it in the comment box below, we will be happy to help you.

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