Obsessing over those newest fine lines and under-eye circles? Once you’re on the other side of thirty, aging can start to seem like a downhill battle at times. Short of making an appointment with your dermatologist or plastic surgeon, it’s easy to feel like there’s nothing you can do to combat it.
Don’t lose heart—keeping your complexion in tip-top shape doesn’t require thousands of dollars, a facelift, or a time machine. There are actually a number of easy beauty tips you can tackle to help take back your youthful complexion—and fast.
We’ve compiled eight of the best anti-aging beauty hacks, guaranteed to provide visible results.
1. Slather on the SPF
Why is this beauty tip at the top of every…single…anti-aging list, ever? Because it’s the one skincare tip guaranteed to work on everybody. Aging is both intrinsic (caused by genetics and diet) and extrinsic (caused by your environment), and making sure you’re well protected against the elements with a broad-spectrum sunscreen is the best way to fight the good fight. (Other than being the child of an ageless wonder like Gabrielle Union, because girl does not age.)
TRY Cetaphil DermaControl Oil Control Moisturizer SPF 30 ($14) or Bare Minerals Prep Step Broad Spectrum SPF ($30), or if you want a bit of tint, try Urban DecayNaked Skin One & Done Hybrid Complexion Perfector ($34) or Black Radiance True Complexion BB Cream ($5).
2. Swap Your Black for Brown
If you’ve automatically reached for the black eyeliner and mascara over the years, consider switching to brown. Dark black makeup can be harsh and accentuate fine lines. Instead, opt for liner and mascara in a slightly lighter brown shade. You’ll still get the eye definition you crave, but it’ll make your eyes appear brighter and your features softer.
TRY Maybelline Great Lash Mascara in Dark Brown ($6) or Benefit Cosmetics They’re Real! Lengthening and Volumizing Mascara in Beyond Brown ($24), and try NYX Slim Eye Pencil in Brown ($4) or Charlotte Tilbury Rock ‘n’ Kohl Iconic Liquid Eye Pencil in Barbarella Brown ($27).
3. Moisturize—From the Inside
Okay, we know it’s a bit of cliché, but a well-hydrated body (and face) is really half the battle when it comes to smooth, plump skin. You don’t need to go overboard with glass after glass (after glass after glass) of water—your body will simply urinate out what you don’t need, anyway—but do make sure that you’re hydrating throughout the day. You’ll see an immediate difference in your complexion, skin tone, and even under your eyes. Real world tip: Aim for a glass with each meal and snack, and work your way up from there.
Also: Drink water out of a glass, not a bottle or straw. The pursing of lips when using a straw or drinking from a bottle can actually cause mouth wrinkles!
4. Sleep on a Silk Pillowcase
Once you make the switch to a silk pillowcase, there’s no—and we mean no—going back. Not only does the fabric stay delightfully cool, ensuring a comfortable night’s sleep, but the it’ll help avoid tugging on your skin during the night, which means fewer wrinkles over time. A silk pillowcase also helps keep your hair frizz-free (seriously), and even helps to moisturize your face. In short: instant bedtime magic.
5. Get Your Zzz’s
Speaking of sleep, you’re not getting enough of it. Studies have shown that women need more sleep than men—thanks, in part, to our multi-tasking brains!—and most people are eeking by with seven hours a night, if they’re lucky, when you actually need closer to nine. You’re busy, it’s hard to squeeze in an extra hour, your mind is racing a mile a minute at night, and there are episodes on Netflix to catch up with: we get it. But aiming to go to bed an hour earlier will make a huge difference not only in your complexion, but possibly in your waistline, too.
Tips: Unplug an hour before bed, take a warm bath, drink some milk (or a sip of whiskey)—do whatever you need to catch those extra Zzz’s, but make it a priority. Your body, face, waist, and mind will thank you.
5. Try a coral-pink lip
There are certain beauty truths, and chief among them is that red lipstick makes you look older. On the other hand, rocking a pink, slightly coral lip shade will actually help you look younger. Aim for a soft, dusty, peachy-pink to help brighten your face and recapture a youthful glow. This shade is universally flattering, meaning it looks fab on every complexion.
6. Cut Bangs
A quick fringe trim will not only help you look more youthful—at some point during your childhood, you and everybody you knew likely sported a cute pair—but it will also help hide the inevitable frown lines that start to etch themselves across your forehead and between your brows as you get older. Just think of bangs as instant Botox, but without the needle.
7. Soft rosy blush
You know the redness that creeps across your face when you’re embarrassed? That’s the shade of rosy pink blush which will help instantly shave off five years. A rosy pink—which, yes, really can work for every complexion—brushed with a light touch on the apples of cheeks is an instant time machine, trust us.
8. Use a Moisturizer with Hyaluronic Acid
Because hyaluronic acid holds 1000 times its weight in water, moisturizers containing this key hydration ingredient will help to visibly plump skin within the first application. While the benefits will also be cumulative over time, the immediate result is a softer, cushier, dramatically younger looking complexion, instantly.