For an inevitable phenomenon, ageing, or rather the outward signs of it, is seemingly one of the biggest thorns in our sides from a beauty point of view. We have a lot of bones to pick with ageing, and anti-ageing ‘trends’ seem to come and go, be it reducing the appearance of wrinkles, fading age spots or smoothing out a crepey décolletage. In a move that proves that contouring is the craze that will not die, ‘sculpting’ has this year taken precedence in the skincare rather than makeup market, with an uplift (sorry) in launches that claim to reduce sagging and restore our youthful bounce. As solving ageing conundrums go, defying gravity, Wicked style, seems like a pretty lofty ambition, but is there method in the contouring madness? We put a few of our qualms to Dr. Justine Hextall, Consultant Dermatologist on behalf of The Harley Medical Group.

What can a lifting cream actually do?

“The area of the skin where the collagen and elastin are found is in the dermis. These structures keep skin firm- the so-called scaffolding of the skin. As we get older, intrinsic ageing and the effects of our environment, for instance UV exposure, stress, pollution and smoking start to degrade the collagen and elastin. As a consequence, wrinkles develop and skin starts to sag.”