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Last decade’s fashions and an outdated hairstyle can certainly age a woman, but not nearly as much as wrinkly, dry skin. While fashion and hair issues can easily be remedied by a trip to the mall or the salon, making skin look younger is a more complicated process that requires daily attention. The following five steps can help take years off a woman’s face and help slow the future appearance of aging. Although they cannot stop time, they can restore a youthful glow to a woman of any age.

Before beginning the steps, it is important to determine your skin type. Everyone’s skin has different properties that will affect the products that are most effective for the given skin type. To decipher your skin type, start by washing your face and patting it dry. Take a small piece of tissue paper and dab it around your face. People with oily skin will be able to see the oil on the paper, while dry skin will emit no moisture. Most people have a combination of both characteristics and can use standard products. People with oily skin may be prone to blackheads and have larger pores, those with dry skin may experience flakiness and fine wrinkles and those with sensitive skin may have delicate pores and splotches of discoloration. Purchasing products that are specially formulated for your skin type can help remedy these problems and leave your skin radiant if you follow these steps for younger looking skin.

Step One: Cleanse

Each day, the skin absorbs makeup, oil, dirt and other impurities. Cleansing the skin of these contaminants can reduce acne and make skin look younger. Choose a cleanser that suits your skin type. For instance, people with oily skin should avoid cleansers that contain additional oils. A solution that contains salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide can help reduce breakouts and dry excess oil. Those with dry skin should use a gentle cleanser that contains an added moisturizer. Cleansers that are made of natural ingredients are most appropriate for sensitive skin, and people with combination skin can use most products without worry.

Use the cleanser once a day, preferably at night. Splash warm water on the face then gently rub a dime-size amount of cleanser into the skin. Rinse thoroughly with warm or cool water and pat dry. Over-cleansing can cause rashes, acne and flakiness so skip the cleanser in the morning and just use water instead.

Step Two: Exfoliate

Exfoliating removes dead cells, leaving your skin smooth, soft and glowing. The process also leaves a clean surface behind, which allows moisturizers to penetrate deep into your pores.

Use an exfoliating scrub twice a week during the morning. After cleansing, splash warm water on your face and rub a small amount of exfoliant on your face for about 30 seconds. Be gentle, as excess pressure can cause your skin to become irritated. Rinse completely using warm water and pat dry. If time is an issue, mix a small amount of the exfoliant into your regular cleanser to complete both steps at one time.

Step Three: Moisturize

Moisturizers hydrate the skin to eliminate dry patches, limit the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and give an all-around healthy glow. Apply a small amount of moisturizing lotion each day after cleansing and before applying makeup. Avoid using a moisturizer at night, as the skin needs time to breathe while you rest.

Step Four: Wear Sunscreen

Protecting your skin from the sun is universally accepted by doctors and beauty professionals as one of the best ways to keep your skin healthy and younger looking. Sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 should be applied each time you leave the house, even in winter or on cloudy days. Reapply often when sweating or swimming and avoid the sun during peak afternoon hours.

Step Five: Change Your Lifestyle

Cleansing, exfoliating, moisturizing and wearing sunscreen can only do so much to correct and prevent signs of aging. The best way to look younger is to adopt a healthier lifestyle. Abstain from smoking, get plenty of rest each night and exercise for at least thirty minutes per day. Choose fruits that are high in antioxidants, like blackberries, plums, strawberries and blueberries. These fruits contain vitamins and minerals that can help guard cells against disintegration and damage.