The Best Topical Ingredients to Turn Back the Clock on Your Skin

We’ve all been promised the elixir of youth at one point in our lives: this beauty product, or that chemical peel. They’ll make you look younger, take 5, 10 – no, 25 years off of your skin, leaving you feeling healthier, sexier – ageless.

That’s a lot to expect from a product!

So, we stand there in the beauty aisle staring at a rainbow of options, trying to decide between the $150 cream or the $15 mud-mask until we’re mentally exhausted. Then we either buy a product too quickly or end up walking away with nothing.

But this isn't getting us any closer to our goal of healthier, youthful, more radiant skin.

Factors that contribute to our skin's appearance

There are a number of factors that contribute to the health of our skin, namely:
  • Genetics – the skin-type and skin conditions we inherit
  • Lifestyle – the climate we live in, where we work (indoors/outdoors), our diet, exercise, and stress management
  • Aging – our skin's oil-production and elasticity, which decreases as we get older

While we can’t control our genetics, we do have much more control over our lifestyle, and so, can take the right steps toward replenishing our skin.

The first place to start – and the key to finding the best products – is to look at the ingredient list.

Start with the ingredients

There’s a potpourri of tried and true skin-reviving ingredients available to us – yay!

But because those beauty shelves are brimming with difficult to navigate products, the idea of sorting your way through them just sounds exhausting.

To help you in your quest for healthier ingredients to replenish your skin, we've made a top 10 list for you!

Top 10 ingredients to look for in topical skincare products


  1. Vitamin A (retinol) – Stimulates cell turnover and collagen production.
  2. Vitamin C – Lightens dark-spots, helps in collagen-production, and neutralizes free-radicals.
  3. Vitamin E – Another antioxidant, vitamin E helps to strengthen and repair the skin's natural barrier.
  4. Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) – Exfoliates and hydrates (glycolic and lactic acid are both excellent options).
  5. Hyaluronic Acid – Moisturizes and reduces the appearance of fine lines.
  6. Niacinimide – Calms inflammation and brightens skin.
  7. Collagen – An essential protein and building-block for the skin. It can also be taken as a supplement!
  8. Ceramides – Helps to seal in moisture inside the skin's natural barrier and protect it from irritants.
  9. Q-10 (ubiquinone) – Boasts antioxidant effects and helps to soothe skin.
  10. UV protection, ie. sunscreen – Perhaps the most important 'ingredient' to protect your skin is to always wear a sunscreen with an SPF-rating of at least 30.

Youthful skin is found in nature!

Hopefully, your next trip to the beauty aisle will be a bit more breezy with this ingredient-list. Remember that these ingredients won't reverse your skin's age drastically, but by investing in the long game, and by diligently using them, you might be surprised at how effective they truly are!


Feature photo by Noah Buscher on Unsplash