According to a recent survey sponsored by a European skin-care company, the primary concern among older women, at least when it comes to their skin, is dryness, followed by wrinkles and a sagging neck. Natural skin remedies for these problems are always worth a try, considering that, quite often, they’re free and work just as well as over-the-counter products.
Try these skin salves from the Rodale Remedy Finder before plunking down $100 on the latest potion:
• Dry skin. Buy fatty soaps. Standard soaps contain lye, which can be irritating as well as drying, but some soaps, such as Dove, contain extra amounts of fatty materials, such as tallow (animal fat), cocoa butter, lanolin, or even olive oil, and will moisturize better than a pricey cleansing cream or any standard-formula soap. And after you wash up, don’t dry your face completely: Moisturizers are more effective when applied to slightly damp skin than to completely dry skin. When it comes to choosing moisturizers, don’t assume that expensive creams are more effective. There’s no evidence they work better than petroleum jelly or mineral oil, says one dermatologist. However, since those are both derived from nonrenewable petroleum, opt for vegetable oils like sunflower or peanut oil.
• Sagging neck. The skin on your neck is the thinnest skin on your body, and that makes it particularly susceptible to the process of aging. Using the same treatments you would for wrinkles and dry skin can help prevent neck skin from sagging. And maintaining good posture can eliminate strain on your neck muscles, which can add to sagging. The way you dress can help conceal any sagging you may already have, as well. Standard turtlenecks can pinch loose skin and accentuate sagging skin, but a loose-fitting or scrunch-neck version can help hide sagging.