With age comes wisdom, clarity, and maturity (in all forms). Yes, accompanying the maturity in your mind, your skin, too, experiences something called maturity—except it’s much less sought after than the former. Mature skin typically refers to over the age of 50, but identifies with anyone displaying a great amount of fine lines, wrinkles, dullness/dry skin, and reduced elasticity. While we’re all about embracing the beautiful journey our skin takes to get to a certain point, there’s nothing wrong with anti-aging goals of wanting to keep skin looking refreshed and feeling fabulous with a firmer, brighter skin barrier. That’s why we turned to experts to break down the best brightening skincare for mature skin. We spoke with dermatologist Angela Lamb, MD, and licensed esthetician Cassandra Bankson for insight.
Before we get into their picks, they both made a point to note that when it comes to brightening face serum, SPF, cleanser, and moisturizer/lotion, pay more attention to the ingredients than the brand name. Vitamin C, arbutin, azelaic acid, niacinamide, mulberry, bearberry, and licorice extracts are all effective at brightening the skin. This means their formulation targets hyperpigmentation or discoloration, sun damage, acne scars, and more. Once you determine you’ve found a product with the right skin care ingredients (lactic acid, glycolic acid, retinol/retinoids, peptides, glycerin, and nourishing ceramides are always welcome on mature skin), you can then look for something that caters to your skin type in particular. Whether you’ve got oily skin, acne-prone skin, blemishes/breakouts, dryness, or other skin issues, there are plenty of products with active ingredients to get you the results you deserve. The appearance of fine lines and lack of collagen production can be stressful enough—who needs to make it worse with dull skin?
Keep reading for their skin care product picks and prepare to pack your cart—trust us, there’s something for everyone!
About the Experts:
You can pretty much never go wrong with Paula’s Choice products, and Bankson loves this pick in particular. “What's great is that this one only brightens the areas of the skin that are rapidly turning over,” she says.
Save your skin and your money with one of Bankson’s top picks. “Vitamin C is an antioxidant that stops your skin from creating pigment in the first place,” she says. “This product supercharges your sunscreen and brightens all over.”
If you’re not familiar with Alpha Arbutin, you’re not alone. It’s a much lesser known (yet considerably more potent) brightening ingredient than vitamin C, for example. It’s so potent, in fact, that Bankson considers it the closest alternative to hydroquinone with a prescription. Added bonus? This product right here is a budget buy at just $11! “This ingredient works really well at night,” she says. “Use it under a moisturizer or night cream.”
If you’re looking for brightening skincare that provides an experience, this high-end product will do just that. In addition to the luxurious feel, Bankson stands by this because of the way it absorbs into the skin with encapsulated technology that penetrates deep and works all day.
The name of this product makes it clear what it does, but it’s especially recommended for sensitive skin (and it’s safe for pregnant women!) because “it excludes over 16,000 endocrine-disrupting ingredients,” says Dr. Lamb. “Rest assured, you won't have any flare-ups with this.” This powerful pick protects from UV, blue light, pollution, and oxidative stress, while deeply hydrating. Dr. Lamb says you’ll be left with a natural glow and brightened, more even skin tone.
If you’re ready to go all in with your brightening treatment, this guy will get the job done. “It has a patented formula of stable 20% pure Vitamin C and stable epigallocatechin gallate, which is an ingredient found in green tea,” Dr. Lamb says. “The two ingredients work together to prevent signs of aging.”
We still don’t understand how this amazing drugstore brand is always a budget-buy, but hey, we’ll take it. “It has pure vitamin C paired with salicylic acid and neurosensine,” Dr. Lamb says. “This refines skin texture and tone on the face and neck without harming sensitive skin.”
If you’re looking for a powerhouse product that packs a punch, Dr. Lamb’s got you. “The oil-free elixir blends l-ascorbic acid, silymarin, ferulic acid, and salicylic acid to protect from free radical damage, stave off excess oil production, and help to clarify pores.” Whew.
It’s another vitamin C rec you’ll love. Dr. Lamb’s a fan because it’s high in linoleic acid and helps reduce inflammation, making it great for those prone to acne flare-ups.
And the all-star award goes to… “This oil-soluble product soaks into the skin, has three forms of vitamin C, and delivers rapid and long-lasting results,” Bankson says. “It’s actually worth the price.”
Want in on all the IPSY skincare faves? Take our Beauty Quiz now to get started with your own subscription. Already a member? Refer your friends to earn points, which you can use toward products. Either way, don’t forget to check us out on Instagram and TikTok @IPSY.
Like this article? Share it with your friends by clicking the icons below!