The neck is one of the first areas that give away the age. Similarly to the eye area, the skin of the neck is thinner and more delicate than the facial skin and is characterized by less sebaceous glands and a thinner hypodermic fatty layer. Therefore, it has a tendency to wrinkle earlier. Additional factors that contribute to the looseness, sagginess and older look of the neck skin are gravity, genetics and environmental factors, such as the sun’s radiation that accelerates the appearance of fine lines and hyper pigmentation.
Over the past years, several treatment technologies for the neck area have been developed in the field of plastic surgery. However, alongside these technologies, the cosmetic world also has a number of innovative treatments to offer, which are based on effective actives and provide solutions for the various problems that characterize the areas of the neck and décolleté.
What are the important ingredients to look for?
The most important ingredients, whose effectiveness in skin care, including the neck skin, has been scientifically proved, are Retin A and Retinol— which are both derivatives of Vitamin A. Studies which utilized Retinol showed significant improvement in the condition of the wrinkles and sun damages in just 24 weeks. While Retin A requires a doctor’s prescription, Retinol is a component in the care products of many leading cosmetic companies. Since the neck skin is more sensitive than the facial skin, it is recommended to begin applying the product which contains Retin A or Retinol on the neck once a week. If there is no irritation, the frequency can be gradually increased until eventually the product is applied every night.
No less important are the moisturizing components. While at a young age a simple moisturizer may be sufficient care for the neck skin area, with the aging process the importance of using a moisturizer of high quality which is richer in moisturizing components increases, since the amount of water in the skin decreases with age, and thus it becomes harder and harder to maintain an optimal level. Besides water, neck creams also contain additional actives which increase skin’s moisture levels and also assist maintain long lasting hydration deep in the skin. One of the principle ones is hyaluronic acid, which serves as a sort of sponge that absorbs water and holds it in the skin. Without these substances, the application of a moisturizer resembles the application of water on the skin. The water evaporates from the skin and also draws with it more water that is in the skin and thus can dehydrate it even more. It is important to make sure to apply a moisturizer at least twice a day, in the morning and in the evening.
The fatty components also have great importance in the care of the neck area. Thus, ingredients such as murumuru and cupuacu butters act to nourish and balance moisture level while plant oils such as acai enrich the skin with vitamins A & C as well as essential fatty acids Omega 3, 6 & 9.
Beyond the products designated for the neck, sunblock is the most important in the prevention of premature skin aging, a significant portion of which is caused by the sun’s radiation. Therefore, it is important to use a well-formulated sunscreen with a protective factor of SPF 15 or above and to apply it daily to face, neck, décolleté and hands.