The Best Skin-Care Products for Over 70

By Judi Light Hopson

Skin tends to become somewhat thinner as we age. Protection of the skin for individuals over 70 is important since sun damage and dryness can become a problem. The skin is actually the body's largest organ, and we can gauge an individual's well being by the health of his skin. Older individuals can look healthier by keeping the skin soft and relatively free of age spots. There are many natural products and man-made cosmetics to help older skin look and feel good.

Sunscreen is great for older citizens.

Moisturizing and Cleaning

Ideally, people of all ages should wear moisturizer 24 hours a day on their face, hands and body. Skin care for senior citizens calls for retaining the moisture that is already present in the skin. Products with sesame oil or avocado oil are best. These oils are lightweight and can penetrate the pores for absorption into the skin. Moisturizers that contain no oil whatsoever lack the substance to hold existing moisture in older skin. Gentle soaps are good for cleansing, but cotton balls saturated with whole milk clean the skin deeper and more gently than any commercial product.

Sunscreen Is Vital

Wearing sunscreen daily on the face, neck and forearms is important in skin care for senior citizens. Because the body slows down its producing of natural oils as time goes on, aging skin grows less resilient to sun damage and age spots. An SPF (sun protection factor) of 30 or above is vital for protecting older skin from cancer. A sunscreen product should have either microionized zinc oxide or titanium oxide for maximum protection. If brown age spots do occur, creams and gels containing hydroquinone work well, even on fair skin. Creams with Vitamin C, which is ascorbic acid, can fade age spots as well.

Skin Creams and Vitamin E

Dry, flaky skin is always a concern in skin care for senior citizens. While a slow thyroid can be to blame for extremely flaky skin, it's usually just typical of the aging process. Rough elbows, feet, knees or hands soften up when petroleum jelly, heavier skin creams or Vitamin E oil is applied. Vitamin E can be applied directly to the skin from a supplement capsule to heal rough places on older skin.

Products to Fight Wrinkles

Vitamin A cream is believed to fight wrinkles in older skin. One form of Vitamin A, called tretonin, can be applied directly to the skin. It requires a doctor's prescription. Wearing a heavy face cream at night to prevent moisture loss will also help prevent wrinkles. These creams typically contain heavier oils or petroleum jelly, so they are too greasy for wearing in public. However, they prevent dehydration of older skin, especially during the night.

Exfoliation Products and Massagers

Men and women over 70 may benefit from having a chemical peel to soften up extremely hard skin. This process should be performed by a licensed dermatologist. Exfoliating the outer layers of the skin and exposing the softer skin beneath will make some deeper wrinkles disappear. Stimulating the skin with a pulsating electric massager is good, too. This kind of treatment helps cell turnover and makes the skin look fresher. The body's own blood supply regenerates the skin better than any external product.