How to Start an Anti-Ageing Routine in Your 20s, 30s and 40s – According to Experts

Could this be the * secret * behind the picture of Dorian Grey?

Let’s face it…the 10-step-Korean-skincare or the bizarre ‘Face Bra’ is not what you envisioned when it comes to an age-defying beauty ritual.

From hyaluronic acid to retinol, it is easy to get confused about which trending super beauty ingredient should you include, which order should these products be applied and more importantly – Are you too young to have an anti-ageing routine?

Well, the experts are on-page about one thing – No it is not.

“In this day and age, it's never too early to start taking care of your skin. The rising pollution levels and stressful lifestyles have made premature ageing a common occurrence. I think sunscreen is the biggest, most vital part of your anti-ageing routine and there's no age limit for that,” says Dr Geetika Mittal Gupta, founder & medical Director at ISAAC Luxe.

In your 20s

Anti-ageing for this age-group is more about preventive care and nourishing the skin rather than worrying about wrinkles. “Though wrinkles may not be a concern in your 20s, dark spots and uneven skin-tone are some of the common complaints. Your skin may begin to lose natural radiance, looking stressed and dull due to exposure to sun and stressful lifestyle,” says Dr Simal Soin, cosmetic dermatologist & founder, AAYNA Clinic.

So, here are the steps you need to include in your beauty regimen:


Always remove your makeup: This hack requires no age limit, TBH. So, if you’re not removing your makeup before hitting snooze, you may want to mend your ways.

“Hygiene is very important in our everyday routine, you should always remove every bit of makeup before going to bed as it can clog pores, cause pigmentation, blackheads and pimples. Removing every trace of eye makeup at the end of the day can play a huge role in preventing dark circles and baggy eyelids,” says Dr Bharti Magoo, cosmetologist, aesthetician & founder, Golden Touch Clinic.

Amp up the SPF: Sun damage is real, as experts have pointed out. The easiest way to include sun protection in your skincare routine is to opt for a moisturiser with SPF. If you’re battling acne or oily skin, opt for a medicate sunscreen and include a sebum control cream in your routine.

Invest in an eye cream: “Your twenties are a good time to start investing in an eye cream and a night cream. As you get older, you can add AHA-BHA acids, serums, night creams etc,” says Dr Geetika Mittal Gupta.

In your 30s

The prevention and caring get a serum-esque boost in your thirties. Adding regular exfoliation and great serums to a good cleansing-toning-moisturising (CTM) routine is advised. “Ageing is not just about your skin but also takes a toll on our organs, bones, muscles, eyes and hair too. Clean living and optimal hydration combined with the right products make it less likely for you to develop wrinkles and lines,” says Dr Bharti Magoo.

So, here’s what you need to add to your regular CTM routine to reach your best skin health:


Introduce double cleansing: As we age, our skin needs a little extra push to fasten the regeneration process. This is where exfoliation and double-cleansing come in. “It’s a great move to add double cleansing with micellar water, a pH-balanced facewash and a mild exfoliating toner in your routine,” says Dr Geetika Mittal Gupta.

Meet your HGs Vitamin C and Retinol: These two are the power players of any skincare regime courtesy their miraculous ability to fade dark spots, brighten the skin and stimulate collagen growth. “You can also start using Vitamin C serum and take up the potency as your skin gets used to it. This is to combat of pigmentation or melasma, often seen during pregnancy,” says Dr Geetika Mittal Gupta. You can increase the power of your beauty arsenal by opting for Retinol with a potent antioxidant like Ferulic Acid at night.

Increase the SPF: During the AM, it’s best to opt for a medicated sunscreen with a higher SPF to prevent damage and a Hyaluronic Acid-based day cream to moisturise.

In your 40s

“Your forties are all about addressing multiple signs of ageing such as deep wrinkles, sagging and loss of hydration with a skincare regimen that tackles these advanced symptoms,” says Dr Simal Soin. Here’s how you can do exactly that:


Retinol is the MVP of your beauty arsenal: Adding OTC Retinol in your regimen and see how your skin reacts. You can also opt for different variations combining Hyaluronic Acid or Ferulic Acid.

Amp up the moisturizing: As your skin’s regeneration abilities get slower, you need to amp up the hydration. “Moisturising sunscreen lotions, eye creams and facial oils can add the much-needed moisture-boost to your skin. Peptide creams that help increase cell turnover and boost collagen are also a great inclusion in your regimen,” says Dr Kiran Kaur Sethi, skin and cosmetic specialist, founder Isya Aesthetics.

Get the tools: We all get by with a little extra help from our friends and in this case, collagen supplements, massage tools and professional facials are your BFFs. “In your forties, invest in serum or facial oil that suits your skin texture and skin type and apply it religiously to keep up hydration. You can also use a facial massage tool if needed. It’s a good idea to include regular professional or medical facials in your routine,” says Dr Geetika Mittal Gupta.