All skin is ageing. Whether you’re anti it or not it’s going to happen. But there are things you can do to prevent your skin from ageing prematurely and keep it looking younger for longer. Gentle, regular cleansing with products suited to your skin type and condition is an important first step in caring for skin whatever your age, and it matters even more as we get older. Here are seven cleansers that stand up to the test of time. In alphabetical order:
Algae has been making health and beauty waves since ancient times. Rich in minerals and trace elements, micro-algaes are sometimes called the ‘retinol of the sea’ because of their hydrating and healing properties. Algenist’s Genius Ultimate Anti-aging melting cleanser (£32 for 100ml) is powered by their patented formula of alguronic acid and microalgae oil – both sustainably sourced. The brand makes bold claims for its anti-ageing effectiveness, promising ‘visible skin transformation in just 10 days’. That’s a tall order for a cleanser, but there’s lots to love about this product. The silky green gel melts into an oil that makes light work of removing dirt and make-up without drying. Add water and it turns into a milk emulsion and washes away easily – no cloth required. With a mild, sweet, slightly vanilla-y smell, it leaves skin soft and springy. Available at Cult Beauty.
Top of the aroma charts is Aurelia’s Miracle Cleanser. Camomile, eucalyptus, rosemary and bergamot lift the spirits while the luxurious creamy formula lifts off the grime. Aurelia fuses these bio-organic plant and flower essences with probiotic and peptide technologies for gentle but effective cleansing. This nothing-short-of-a miracle cleanser strengthens skin’s ability to protect itself and boosts the production of collagen and elastin that support the firm structure associated with young-looking skin. Cleansing with Aurelia is always a treat and never a chore, which means I spend longer massaging the product into my skin. And that massaging helps slow down the visible signs of ageing. Available in tube (£22 for 50ml), glass jar (£42 for 120ml) or pump dispenser (£65 for 240ml), along with a muslin cloth, here.
3. Elemental Herbology
There’s a cleanser for everyone in the Elemental Herbology range. The Purify & Soothe Cleansing Balm (£30 for 75ml) is a delicious and nutritious hot cloth option for dry, sensitive skin. When skin starts to lose its natural radiance, Vital Cleanse (£29 for 100ml) helps it to zing. When skin shows the signs of time, Bio-Cellular Super Cleanse (£28 for 125ml) offers age support. This omega-rich cleanser contains a gentle blend of fruit acids, kombuchka (your guess is as good as mine) and vitamin C to boost cell production, brighten and strengthen skin as it cleans. The thick milk (or light cream?) has an all-natural, plant-based fragrance and you can pick one up on from the Elemental Herbology shop (free delivery) or at lookfantastic (£22.40 + postage, and a 20% discount for first time shoppers).
4. Emma Hardie
The botanical beauty that is Amazing Face Moringa Cleansing Balm (£47 for 100ml with a cleansing cloth) is the best-of-the-balms for dry, sensitive, ageing skin. Facialist Emma Hardie’s formula combines moringa seed oil (from a tree native to Asia and associated with reducing inflammation) with wild sea fennel and vitamin E to purify and reduce pores. Orange, neroli and mandarin oils work alongside jasmine and rose to revitalize dull and dehydrated skin. Packed with essential oils, this cleanser is best removed with a hot cloth and can also be left on as a rescue mask when your face needs a little pick me up Treat yourself here where there’s 10% off if you sign up for the newsletter.
All skin gets drier as we get older, but if yours is somewhere north of dehydrated and you’re a fan of an all-natural balm, you’re going to love this. I’ve been missing the sea so much over the last few months, and there’s nowhere the sea is more beautiful than the Hebrides. That’s where ishga harvest the antioxidant-rich, collagen-boosting seaweed that infuses Marine Cleansing Balm. It massages in smoothly, but it isn’t coming off without a hot cloth, so it’s definitely a product to indulge in when you have the time to relax into your routine. And relaxing won’t be a problem thanks to the dreamy lemongrassy fragrance. This new find has been one of my little lockdown pleasures and, when things open up again, I’m loving the idea of an ishga organic rejuvenating facial at Coworth Park spa (£130 for 60m). Until then, put one in your basket here for that spa at home feeling (£38 for 100ml and 10% off your first order if you sign up for the newsletter).
6. Kat Burki
Kat Burki’s KB5™ Calming Gel Cleanser is a great first step in a skincare routine for oily and combination skin that’s showing signs of ageing. Foaming cleansers can dry skin out, leaving it feeling tight, but not this one. Apply it to wet or dry skin, it forms the gentlest of lathers once water is added and rinses away quickly and easily leaving you clean without the squeaky. The colourless gel with a natural fruity fragrance is loaded with powerful nutrients that boost skin health as they remove make up and grime. The hero five in the patented complex are arnica, gotu kola (an Asian medicinal herb), lavender, calendula and chamomile, but the blend includes many more. I’ve yet to meet a dud in the Kat Burki range. My skin loves her products. Try it for yourself at net-a-porter (£47 for 130ml).
If you’re looking for a gel texture but your skin is dry (lacking oil) or dehydrated (lacking water), Renaissance Cleansing Gel (£36 for 100ml) is the one for you. The yummy-smelling pink gel emulsifies into a milk on contact with water and rinses off easily. This is my go-to for a quick but effective cleanse. There’s always one in a shower near me and friends who’ve stayed (remember those days?) and helped themselves rate it as much as I do. Powered by pumpkin enzymes, chamomile and the brand’s signature MSM (a form of sulphur that cells use to build collagen), it’s further enriched with skin-boosting vitamins C and E. This power-packed cleanser soothes and strengthens temperamental skin and leaves you feeling nourished and refreshed. Pop one in your trolley here.
Once you’ve found a cleanser that works for you, stick with it. Tempting as it is to chop and change your skin will thank you for a bit of consistency when it comes to cleansing. Message me @lucy_holls with any questions or comments. I’d love to hear your experiences or help you find the cleanser of your dreams.