“Benjamin Buttoning.” Ageing backwards. Stopping time. If there’s one effect or buzzword that elicits the same visceral reaction from beauty editors, skincare experts, and customers alike, it’s anything with the term anti-ageing in it. The truth of the matter is this: There’s no miracle cream, gel, serum or treatment that has the power to actually reverse or halt the signs of ageing on the skin. (Sorry, it just doesn’t exist.) That said, there are a small number of products that come pretty close, and we’re about to share an edit of them below.
Per a roster of celebrity makeup artists—Emily Cheng, Naoko Scintu and Emma White Turle—we’re uncovering a curated selection of the best anti-ageing moisturisers. The keyword here being curated because according to them, not every cream or moisturiser on the market works the same. Luckily, they find that the below six do wield high-performing effects that plump and lift the skin and combat fine lines and wrinkles. So without further ado, keep scrolling to discover what makes each one so beloved and a few of the other products they recommend building out your routine with as well.
Turle introduced this cream to me by saying that it’s considered a scientific masterpiece and that she’s inclined to agree. I was immediately intrigued. “This lifts the skin from the first use,” she explained. “And over a few weeks of use, lines are diminished and skin is brighter. It’s very rich but very light and works beautifully under makeup. The driest and most tired of skin is immediately revived with this. I hide this from my husband.”
Another anti-ageing gem Turle swears by? Susanne Kaufmann’s Face Fluid. “This is a moisturiser where they’ve harnessed natural skincare with science to create a formidably powerful, light, easily absorbed moisturiser,” she shared. “Susanne’s anti-ageing range is quite remarkable and gives significant long-term effects as well as hydrating skin immediately. I would use this every day, let it absorb for a few minutes and then apply makeup. You don’t need a primer, as it creates a perfect canvas that holds your makeup.”
Turle insists that massage is a key factor in anti-ageing. She broke down the benefits of facial massage tools, explaining, “Apart from dispersing fluid that can gather around the eyes and jawline, this stimulates blood flow to facial muscles, to help to heal and to ease away tension. I like to use a gua sha or a facial roller.”
“Both of these will lift the face and smooth out the lines. The roller works wonderfully around the eye area to massage away jet lag, wine or insomnia. I always have them in my kit bag,” Turle noted.
“My mom has the most beautiful skin and swears by SK-II,” shared Cheng. “She loves the essence paired with the R.N.A. power anti-ageing face cream. [Editor’s note: The R.N.A. face cream is sadly unavailable in the UK.] She struggles mostly with sunspots and firmness, which she and I have seen vastly improve since she started the duo. She is also particular about scents and has pretty sensitive skin. A win for her!”
Cheng shared that she’s currently in Vancouver, having stayed put much longer than planned, and completely ran out of all her usual favourite skincare products. “I was lucky enough to get my hands on Dior’s Le Micro-Caviar de Rose Gelée,” she told us, “which is not something I would normally go for because rose isn’t my favourite scent. However, I gave it a go, and I am so pleasantly surprised. I find that I get very dehydrated skin in Vancouver, and it usually takes forever for my skin to go back to normal. I used the cream and within two days noticed a huge difference. The dry patches dissipated. I’m all about prevention at this point. Fine lines and wrinkles appear the drier your skin is, so keeping hydrated is key for me. It’s been about a week now, and all the dry patches are gone, I have not broken out (which I usually do with new products because my skin is so sensitive), and overall it feels firm and super soft. Right now I use this day and night alone with a prescription acne creme for blemishes.”
Cheng says that SPF is the name of the game. “In the day, I apply Glossier’s sunscreen or Dr. Barbara Sturm’s sun drops over top, which is a must,” she said. “I massage my moisturiser thoroughly into my skin and neck and wait for it to absorb before applying sunscreen.”
Cheng recommends applying your SPF (yes, even if you’re staying indoors!) over your moisturiser and ensuring both are absorbed into the skin.
“The first few days when I was extremely dry with more intense dry patches, I applied Dr. Barbara Sturms hyaluronic acid before the gelée,” Cheng noted. This particular serum is a beauty-editor favourite.
Scintu, the makeup artist behind a number of your favorite celebrity looks, tells us, “I love this moisturiser as its deeply hydrating and also helps rebuild the skin to make it more youthful in appearance. It also encourages the production of collagen, which we all cannot get enough of! It actually makes the skin firmer and plumper, which is what I look for in a great moisturiser. I apply a pea-size amount to my fingertips and rub in to the face using an upward circular motion.”
Scintu shared another favourite of hers, Sisley’s Youth Protector. “I love a good moisturiser that contains SPF. As we all know, anti-ageing prevention is best for youthful-looking skin. I love Sisley’s Youth Protector, which contains an SPF 30 and is also a perfect base for makeup. You don’t need a primer with this product, and it contains gorgeous ingredients that nourish and protect the skin. I like to use this over Omoressence in the morning for maximum hydration and protection with the two products combined. Just make sure you allow the Omoressence to soak into the skin completely before applying the Sisley Youth Protector.”
“I actually love using this moisturiser in combination with Blue Diamond Concentrate serum, also from Omorovicza,” Scintu shared. “This serum just seems to fill in those fine lines, which I think makes the skin look the best it can. It’s all about hydration—the plumper the skin is, the healthier it appears.” In addition to the concentrate serum, she also loves Omoressence, which is actually a hydrating essence. “I love to use this on my clients and also on myself. It contains all those repairing minerals from the hot springs in Budapest. Pat this product in to clean skin, ready for your moisturiser of choice.”
Cheng’s three-step routine for moisturising with the most benefits? “First, make sure your skin is well cleansed before you apply. If you are on the drier side, use a hydrating toner or essence before moisturiser. Then, gently massage moisturiser into your skin so that it fully absorbs, gets blood circulation going and the product won’t just be sitting on the surface.”
If you’re looking for a do-it-all toner that hydrates, calms and refreshes, look no further than Caudalie’s cult-favourite elixir, which you can apply whenever or wherever, on clean skin, on top of makeup or really at any point in your routine.
Next up, the affordable products makeup artists swear by.