Baffled by the number of so-called anti-ageing skincare products on the market?
Here's our pick of the best with proven anti-ageing ingredients
Star ingredient… Alpha Hydroxy Acid
Derived from milk and fruit sugars, Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) are a welcome alternative to harsh face scrubs. They work by exfoliating the surface of the skin as well as hydrating it from the inside out, so are perfect for mature skin. They also stimulate collagen working to firm and brighten. Common forms you might find in skincare products are glycolic, lactic and citric acid. Make sure you use a high-factor sunscreen alongside your AHA though, as skin will be extra vulnerable to sunburn.
Best buy… Paula's Choice Skin Perfecting 8% AHA Gel Exfoliant £23/100ml
A lightweight gel that contains glycolic acid to gently exfoliate leaving skin smooth and glowing. It's a bit pricey, but badly formulated AHAs can easily irritate the skin, so it's worth spending a bit more. Contains skin-soothing anti-irritants, but introduce the product gradually. You can order a sample to try before you buy.
Star ingredient… Antioxidant Vitamin E
Vitamins A, C and E are the most common antioxidants found in skincare. They are thought to help fight free radicals, which are unstable compounds that damage skin cells. It's this damage that can cause dry skin and other signs of ageing. Vitamin E is well known for its wrinkle-fighting benefits and is proven to help aid regeneration, so could help reduce the appearance of age spots.
Best buy… JasÖn Vitamin E Oil 45,000 IU, £9.99/60ml
This face oil combines maximum strength Vitamin E, plus other essential oils such as evening primrose. These potent ingredients work to reduce fine lines and wrinkles. Use on its own at bedtime, or mix with your normal night cream.
Star ingredient… Hyaluronic acid
Naturally occurring in our skin, hyaluronic acid is responsible for keeping skin nicely hydrated and plump. Levels naturally deplete as we get older, which can lead to wrinkles and a loss of firmness. Larger molecules of hyaluronic acid can't penetrate the skin, which is why it's more effective if the molecules are fragmented.
Best buy… L'Oréal Revitalift Laser Renew Night Anti-Ageing Cream-Mask, £19.99/50ml
Designed to improve your skin's capacity to renew overnight by more than ten per cent using a clever formulation of active ingredients. Although it sounds a little odd, you just use it like your usual night cream and just wash it off in the morning.
Star ingredient… Peptides
A protein that stimulates new skin cells, peptides are thought to help heal damaged cells. In fact, experts are divided on whether peptide molecules are too big to effectively penetrate deeply enough, but even so they're great at hydrating the skin.
Best buy… Marks & Spencer Formula Advanced Super Peptides Firm & Lift Eye Cream, £12/15ml
Targets dark circles and also works to improve elasticity with its blend of hardworking ingredients including peptides. This reasonably priced eye cream is clinically proven to lift and improve skin firmness around the eye in just four weeks.
Star ingredient… Retinol
A natural form of Vitamin A, retinol is a star performer when it comes to anti-ageing. It helps speed up cell turnover and boosts elasticity and collagen to encourage cell repair and reduce wrinkles. While many so-called anti-ageing ingredients don't have much to support the claims, there's lots of research backing the positive benefits of retinol.
Best buy… Olay Professional Deep Wrinkle Complex, £29.99/30ml
Penetrating deep into the skin's surface this intensive serum is designed to reduce the appearance of even the deepest wrinkles. Containing Pro-Retinol as well as Niacinamide, which is known for its soothing anti-inflammatory properties you have a powerful anti-ager that shouldn't irritate the skin.
Rhodes to Heaven Orange Skin Food Light £35/50ml
This star in the making is all about boosting collagen. Its hero ingredient is extract of ‘lupin seed coatings', which may sound a bit fancy, but is formulated to promote the production of collagen. It also contains other proven ingredients including shea butter, rosehip oil, Vitamin E and aloe vera. Combined they make a lightweight, yet nourishing cream and you can get away with just using one product day and night.