• Health & Wellness

    Mayo Clinic Minute: Do tweens need a skincare routine?

Filming and uploading each step of your daytime or nighttime skincare routine is all the rage on social media. And it's especially popular among young girls. But do 8- to 12-year-olds really need to worry about anti-aging serums, expensive cleansers and moisturizers?

In this Mayo Clinic Minute, Dr. Dawn Davis, a Mayo Clinic pediatric dermatologist, weighs in on what tweens should and should not be using as part of their skincare routines.

Watch: The Mayo Clinic Minute

Journalists: Broadcast-quality video (1:09) is in the downloads at the end of this post. Please courtesy: "Mayo Clinic News Network." Read the script.

Sharing the steps to achieve younger-looking skin is a popular trend seen on social media. It has young girls, in particular, seeking out pricey skincare products with anti-aging properties.

"Oftentimes, these young children will be given complex skincare regimens that are even more complicated than adults will use on their own skin," says Dr. Davis.

She says a lot of anti-aging products have acids and chemicals in them that can be potentially irritating to gentle or young skin.

"The more often that you expose yourself to a particular chemical, the more likely you are, as you age, to develop an irritant or allergic contact dermatitis from those chemicals," says Dr. Davis.

She says when it comes to skin in general, less is more.

"The best things that all children can do for their skin mirrors that of adults."

Here's what she recommends for tweens ages 8 through 12:

  • Wash face with water and a gentle cleanser twice a day.
  • Apply a hypoallergenic, unfragranced or unscented moisturizer to skin.
  • Apply a sunscreen that contains a physical blocker, such as zinc oxide.

"Once you reach pubertal stage or prepuberty, it is helpful to look for moisturizers that are specific to the face and neck if you're looking for cosmetic improvement," adds Dr. Davis.

Sunscreen is recommended for everyone 6 months and older. She also recommends sunscreens of at least SPF 15 when indoors and at least SPF 30 when outdoors.

Something else everyone can do to help keep their skin healthy is to avoid smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke.

Related Articles