Moisturiser

The skin on our face is the first part of our body to show age and Australians spend millions trying to actively fight it around 370 million dollars a year.

But how do we know what we're actually buying works or are we just buying into clever marketing?

"If there was truly a magic cure cream that fixed every woman's problems there would only be one cream on the market instead of the hundreds that you see in every aisle of the supermarket and department store and that just goes to prove there really isn't one magic cream that is suited for all skin types."

A top of the range product, made in France, can set you back as much as $300, a lot of money when you consider there is face creams on the market for under $10. So how do we know as a consumer what to look for?

A blind skin test is what Dr Eleni Yiasemides of southderm skin clinic says all consumers should do when choosing a cream, and it's not about price or packaging.

"The 3 key ingredients that I encourage my patients to look out for number 1 without a doubt is the SPF so the sun protection factor. The second ingredient I ask my patients to look for is the vitamin a derived products, the prescription only variety is the best and that has the best results but there are some you can buy over the counter. The third main group of ingredients that I ask my patients to look for are the alpha hydroxy ingredient products so these are the glycolic acids the lactic acids the stallastisic acid products and what they do is exfoliate the skin to improve the surface of the skin even out the tone and the complexion."

Eleni says drinking litres of water makes no difference, and be cautious of marketing traps such as creams which claim to target specific areas. Do not over cleanse and avoid creams containing the preservative chemical mi which can cause severe allergic reactions.

O/lay has traditionally led the cheaper end of the market, but the good news is there are plenty of new quality creams under $50. National training manager for DR llewins, Kerrie Moore says always seek advice from the sales assistant and give a product time to work. "if you started using a product and you waiting to see results you want to wait at least 4 to 6 weeks before you start to see that allows the skin cell turnover to happen."