Unlike the author Nora Ephron’s tongue-in-cheek titled book, I Feel Bad About My Neck, And Other Thoughts on Being a Woman,
I don’t feel bad about my neck
—yet. The truth is I didn’t feel anything about my neck, not until I started writing this article. I had forgotten about my neck, at least in terms of it deserving of skincare. I took care of my face, but anything south of my jaw line (besides a recurring mole hair on my throat) had to fend for itself. All that’s changed. Because sometimes you get assigned the story you need to not only write but read.
Here’s a fun fact: neck wrinkles can appear before face wrinkles. The neck tends to age faster than the face because the skin is thinner. The natural loss of collagen
and elastin in the skin can lead more readily to sagging, loose skin and wrinkles. Generally speaking, you should treat your neck as if it was an extension of your face, which technically it is.
The principles of treatment for the neck and décolletage are the same as they are for the face, in that the goals are to protect, prevent, repair, and restore. The best preventative approach to is to lavish the love on your neck by cleaning, exfoliating, moisturizing and applying sunscreen. Here are eight neck care tips worth sticking your neck out for.
Neck skincare step 1: Cleanse with care
When washing your face, extend the cleansing routine to your neck. Use a gentle cleanser to remove dirt, oil, and makeup. Use upward strokes to avoid tugging at the delicate skin.
Try: Derma E Advanced Peptides & Flora-Collagen Gentle Jelly Cleanser
, $14, vitacost.com.
Neck skincare step 2: Exfoliate consistently
Like your face, your neck and chest can accumulate dead skin cells and, as a result, look rougher (and older) than they actually are. To avoid this, use a mild exfoliator 1-2 times a week to promote circulation and skin turnover as well as prepare your skin for moisturizer.
Try: MyChelle Dermaceuticals Fruit Enzyme Scrub
, $18, vitacost.com
Neck skincare step 3: Moisturize zealously
Apply moisturizer daily or even morning and evening to keep the neck skin hydrated. Look for products with ingredients like hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and ceramides, which help to retain moisture.
Try: Acure Ultra Hydrating Plant Ceramide Daily Facial Lotion
, $22, vitacost.com
Neck skincare step 4: Minimize sun exposure
The neck is often exposed to the sun, making it susceptible to sun damage. Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30 on your neck daily and reapply throughout the day if needed.
Try: Devita Solar Protect SPF 30
, $27, vitacost.com
Neck skincare step 5: Be firm
Consider expanding your repertoire of neck-specific creams to include one that contain ingredients like peptides and retinol, which may help improve skin elasticity and reduce the appearance of fine lines.
Try: CSI Rejuvenating Neck Cream
, $10, vitacost.com
Neck skincare step 6: Up your massage game
Gently massage your neck in upward motions to stimulate blood flow and promote lymphatic drainage. This can help reduce puffiness and enhance the absorption of skincare products. Additionally, while applying your products, keep going with upward strokes to work against gravity. A tool such as a Gua Sha can also help to stimulate circulation to the neck area and reduce puffiness.
Try: Koa Life Rose Quartz Gua Sha Massage Tool, $18, vitacost.com
Neck skincare step 7: Seek out collagen-boosting ingredients
Look for products containing collagen-boosting ingredients like peptides and vitamin C to help maintain the elasticity of the skin on your neck.
Try: Reserveage Beauty Firming Neck & Décolleté Cream with Pro Collagen Booster
, $25, vitacost.com
Neck skincare step 8: Beware of tech neck
Constantly looking down at screens can contribute to the development of "tech neck" lines. In addition to causing neck pain and strain, this posture also scrunches up your skin. If you hunch over like that for hours, you’re going to develop horizontal lines on your neck and under your chin. Try to keep your devices at eye level whenever possible.