Choosing The Right Makeup For Post Menopausal Skin

Cynthia Bailey, MD|March 30, 2010

Dr. Dr. Bailey: Your antioxidant skin care program has been such a help for my post menopausal skin.  Thank you.  I was wondering if you have any suggestions regarding cosmetics for flaky skin that is prone to breaking out.  Is there any difference between eye shadows, liners, powder and blushes or is one just as good as the other as long as the skin care program is sound? Thank you, Helen Dear Helen, I’m so glad to hear that My Antioxidant Kit is helping your post menopausal skin! Thank you for your feedback. I wonder why your skin is flaky and breaking out.  Common skin conditions that occur as we age and that cause facial skin to flake and break out include rosacea and seborrheic dermatitis.  You may want to see your dermatologist to see if you may have one of these conditions. What ever the cause of your skin problems, it's hard to put makeup on flaky skin. Makeup color goes on heavier in the scaly areas and looks uneven.  To create an even skin surface before putting on makeup many of my patients find it helpful to first cleanse and gently exfoliate their skin with nondrying  Noble Zinc Soap and the Facial Buf Puf. The second issue is that adult skin that is prone to 'breaking out' is often actually sensitive and easily irratated.   The goal with makeup is to create the aesthetic appearance  you want without irritating your skin problems. This means figuring out what products flair up your skin and avoiding them.   Look for products that claim to be gentle and hypoallergenic.   Anti aging ingredients in makeup can be irritating so I recommend avoiding them; they won’t be present in therapeutic amounts and you’re already using great anti aging products in the antioxidant kit. This goes for your moisturizer as well.  Your moisturizer and makeup should sooth and support the antioxidant kit products, not irritate your skin; they should ‘dial in’ the moisture and appearance you want- and that’s all! My favorite type of gentle, hypoallergenic makeup for sensitive skin is mineral make up. I especially like the loose powders. Powders don't need to be preserved like liquids do and so they have fewer chemical ingredients that could irritate your skin.  There are great foundations, eye shadows and blushes that are loose or compressed powders and that are made with high quality natural ingredients. They look great and the minerals often provide additional sun protection on top of your sunscreen giving you an anti aging bonus. Eyeliners on the other hand have to be moist or waxy which means they'll need some chemical preservatives.  The good news is that eye products are formulated to be extremely gentle so they are rarely a problem for sensitive skin. Mineral makeup brands that I or my patients have had consistently good experience include:

  1. Drug store brands like Almay and Neutrogena and Physician’s Formula.
  2. Department store brands like Clinique and Prescriptives.
  3. Spa and boutique brands like Bare Minerals, Glo Minerals and Jane Iredale.
  4. Natural food store brands like Dr. Hauschka, Hemp Organics and Mineral Fusion.

There are many other good mineral makeup brands that I haven't listed.    Try the products before you buy them.   Ideally you want to wait 24 to 48 hours to see if your skin tolerates a product before you buy it. One last important point about makeup and post menopausal skin is that we often should use less of it as we age. This seems counter-intuitive but unfortunately makeup can accentuate wrinkles and sagging skin.  This is because makeup products migrate into our creases during the day, making them more visible. The lesson here is that there’s no substitute for powerful anti aging skin care and good sun protection, like the Antioxidant Kit that your using. I hope this helps. Warm Regards, Cynthia Bailey MD, Dermatologist If you found this information helpful, you may also want to read: Facial Skin Care For Problem Skin With Rosacea, Seborrhea and Clogged Pores Disclaimer: Please realize that availing yourself of the opportunity to submit and receive answers to your questions from Dr. Bailey does not confer a doctor/patient relationship with Dr. Bailey. The information provided by Dr. Bailey is general health information inspired by your question. It should not be a substitute for obtaining medical advice from your physician and is not intended to diagnose or treat any specific medical problem (and is not an extension of the care Dr. Bailey has provided in her office for existing patients of her practice). Never ignore your own doctor’s advice because of something you read here; this information is for general informational purpose only.

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