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MD advice for moms: When to start a skincare program with your daughter

With everyone from Jessica Simpson to Justin Bieber hocking beauty loot, there are products ‘a plenty in the marketplace luring your pre-teen girl to get her primp on. While these beauty products promise a great deal of glamour and fun, you may have asked yourself what’s really necessary or healthiest for her skin over the long haul.

What the Doctor Says
According to board-certified dermatologist, Jessica J. Krant, M.D. founder of Art of Dermatology on 5th Avenue in NYC, everyone’s exact age to start a skin care regimen differs slightly. The reason is because everyone matures at a different pace and has different natural skin issues to manage. She explains when the best time to start a routine with your daughter, and which basic products are best.

When to Worry About Skin Care
A good age to start thinking about your skincare regimen is during early puberty, which spans a wide range, occurring among individuals between the ages of 9 and 14. This is when the body’s hormones start to rev up oil production and the first signs of acne can begin.

At this age, gentle cleansing with a moisturizing beauty bar or a glycerin bar is often enough, especially if followed by daily application of a light moisturizer for sensitive skin that contains SPF 15 or higher.

Add Antioxidants and Retinols with Age
Depending on how significant your acne, or how sensitive your skin is to different conditions, this basic skincare routine may be enough to get you through college and into your mid to late 20s. After college, add a plant-based antioxidant moisturizer. Some options include green tea, coffeeberry, feverfew and soy. Using this product at night while you sleep can help gently reverse the damage that the sun and environment are already accumulating on your skin.

By 30, it’s time to start considering a topical retinoid – a derivative of Vitamin A, to use sparingly at night. Krant recommends starting with an over-the-counter retinol during this decade. If you already have deepening, visible lines and more dullness than average, you should consider seeing your dermatologist for a prescription of Tretinoin. A pea-sized amount or less nightly will help start to reverse multiple signs of aging and slow the development of future ones.

For more information on skin health, see the American Academy of Dermatology’s website.

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Lauren Stewart
By: Lauren Stewart

Lauren Stewart is a freelancer writer from Michigan. She enjoys writing about beauty, health and fitness! She is passionate about learning new ways to take control of her health and wellness and is a makeup and skincare junkie! You can contact her by emailing