Wrinkle creams: Your guide to younger looking skin

Anti Wrinkle Creams

Common ingredients in anti-wrinkle creams

The effectiveness of anti-wrinkle creams depends in part on the active ingredient or ingredients. Here are some common ingredients that may result in slight to modest improvement in the appearance of wrinkles.


Retinol is a vitamin A compound, the first antioxidant to be widely used in nonprescription wrinkle creams. Antioxidants are substances that neutralize free radicals — unstable oxygen molecules that break down skin cells and cause wrinkles.

Vitamin C

Another potent antioxidant, vitamin C may help protect skin from sun damage.

Hydroxy acids

Alpha hydroxy acids, beta hydroxy acids and poly hydroxy acids are exfoliants — substances that remove the upper layer of old, dead skin and stimulate the growth of smooth, evenly pigmented new skin.

An anti-wrinkle cream may lessen the appearance of your wrinkles, depending on how often you use it, the type and amount of active ingredient in the wrinkle cream, and the extent of the wrinkles you want to treat. See a skin care professional to help you create a personalized skin care plan, assess your skin type, evaluate your skin’s condition and recommend the products for you and your budget.

But if you want to take the guesswork out of your skin care regimen, try these more reliable ways to improve and maintain your skin’s youthful appearance.

Protect your skin from the sun.

Exposure to UV light speeds up the natural aging process of your skin, causing wrinkles and rough, blotchy skin. In fact, sun exposure is the No. 1 reason for signs of aging in the skin, including uneven pigmentation. Protect your skin — and prevent future wrinkles — by limiting the time you spend in the sun and always wearing protective clothing and a hat. Also, use sunscreen on exposed skin year-round when outdoors, even in winter.

Choose products with built-in sunscreen.

When selecting skin care products, choose those with a built-in SPF of at least 15. Also, be sure to select products that are broad spectrum, meaning they block both UVA and UVB rays.

Use moisturizers.

Dry skin turns plump skin cells into shriveled ones, creating fine lines and wrinkles. Though moisturizers can’t prevent wrinkles, they can temporarily mask tiny lines and creases.

Don’t smoke.

Smoking causes narrowing of the blood vessels in the outermost layers of your skin. It also damages collagen and elastin — fibers that give your skin its strength and elasticity. As a result, skin begins to sag and wrinkle prematurely.