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This dynamic duo -- Cindy Joseph, 53, and Julia Joseph, 30, who both model -- have refreshingly similar advice: pamper yourself and don't be afraid to let the real you shine through.
Don't take your glow for granted Being too casual about skincare -- a bad beauty habit typical of many busy young women -- helps set the stage for future problems. "I'm always amazed by the number of women who cleanse with just soap and don't moisturize," says Olivia Chantecaille, who together with her mother, Sylvie, co-owns and operates Chantecaille Cosmetics, in New York City. "Then they wonder why their skin looks ten years older than it should!" Washing off makeup at night, using moisturizer, and wearing a sunscreen of at least SPF 15 are basic, essential, but commonly forgotten steps to beautiful skin. Still sounds too time-consuming? Then do what Julia does and reach for a moisturizer already formulated with sunscreen, such as Olay Complete Defense SPF 30 Daily UV Moisturizer ($13.49). "It's a minimalist skincare routine, and I love it," says Julia. "I actually look forward to it every day."
Battle blemishes Acne may be a distant memory, but you still might have an oily complexion to deal with, as well as the occasional breakout. To combat both oil and blemishes, choose a moisturizer that's oil-free and noncomedogenic, meaning it won't clog your pores, and follow that with a sheer foundation that includes blemish-busting salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide. Great to try: Eucerin Clear Skin Formula SPF 15 Day Lotion ($10.29) and Almay Clear Complexion Blemish Healing Makeup ($11.99).
Don't overdo your makeup Despite having taut and glowing skin, younger women mask it with too much makeup. Your skin is at its peak, so it's smarter to display it than conceal it. "My mom and I both like a more natural look," says Julia, who favors sheer. For special occasions, emphasize one feature, or go for a monochromatic look with an all-in-one stick for eyes, lips, and cheeks, such as NARS the Multiple in South Beach ($35) or Bloom Sheer Color Cream in Cheeky ($15).
Smooth your lines Wrinkles are the number one worry for women in their fifties. But for Cindy, a little crinkle around her eyes is nothing to be afraid of. "I say bring it on!" she notes with a laugh. "I've earned these lines!" But if you're interested in counteracting Mother Nature a bit, then reach for any of the new anti-aging creams that are full of wrinkle-reducing anti-oxidants and amino-acid complexes. Therapy Systems Line Tox ($65), with muscle-soothing argireline -- just like botox -- causes an immediate smoothing effect. Or try RoC Retinol Correxion Deep Wrinkle Overnight Repair ($19.99), which claims to make skin appear a decade younger in just 12 weeks by smoothing and erasing fine lines.
Help your skin renew itself Because the skin exfoliates itself more slowly as we get older, the fiftysomething complexion can appear dull and lackluster. To help reverse the process, look for products with hydroquinone or kojic acid (both are skin lighteners) to counteract uneven skin tone, such as Philosophy A Pigment of Your Imagination ($30). Another option: mix a pea-sized amount of a luminizing cream, such as Chanel Sheer Brilliance in Sunkissed ($40), into your foundation or moisturizer, or apply directly to cheeks and temples for added glow and radiance. Cindy's best advice? "Wear less makeup," says this former makeup artist. "There's so much going on with your skin -- wrinkles, textures changes -- that too much makeup just makes it look worse!"
Help your makeup stay put Mature skin sometimes needs extra help to keep makeup exactly where you put it. One easy solution: makeup primers, which act like a sheer coating on your skin to both fill in any fine lines and imperfections, and set a smooth stage for foundation. After moisturizer or sunscreen, apply a thin layer of primer -- try Smashbox Photo Finish Primer ($36) or Laura Mercier Foundation Primer ($29) -- then wait two minutes before applying your foundation.
Moisturizer is a must The combination of thinner skin (another side effect of aging) plus years of sun exposure equals a complexion that craves moisture. One of the most buzzed-about ingredients to quench dry skin thirst is hyaluronic acid, which increases skin's natural ability to retain moisture, and therefore creates a more plumped-up look. Try beComing Boost Me Up Skin Immunity Hydrator ($35) or Chantecaille Flower Harmonizing Cream ($95).