A lot can change as you get older. You may make new friends, pick up unexpected hobbies, change your sense of style, travel to places you’ve never been, and make all kinds of amazing memories. Over the years, your appearance will shift, too—fine lines and wrinkles, after all, are a completely natural part of aging.
Aging skin is nothing to be ashamed of. But there’s also nothing wrong with wanting to avoid fine lines, wrinkles, dark spots, and hyperpigmentation. When it comes to your skin health, prevention is the best approach. As a part of a solid skincare routine (more on that in a bit), Curology’s new Future-ProofBefore we get into the ins and outs of our new anti-aging personalized skincare product, it’s helpful to understand precisely what causes signs of aging in your skin. Intrinsic aging is aging that happens with the natural passage of time and genetic factors—it’s something you can’t control. Extrinsic aging, however, is due to factors you do have power over. These include:
Following a healthy lifestyle by eating a diet rich in whole foods, avoiding smoking, and practicing good sun protection by wearing a broad spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30 every day can help you to prevent early signs of aging. And while no treatment can “freeze” your skin in time, effective skincare ingredients, like those found in Future-Proofᴿˣ can help you to slow the signs of aging, too.
Future-Proofᴿˣ is a personalized treatment made with clinically-proven ingredients to help defend your skin against early signs of aging like fine lines, wrinkles, hyperpigmentation, and dark spots. Think of it as your all-in-one preventative treatment that goes beyond keeping your skin clear of breakouts and blemishes, working to keep your complexion as smooth and glowing as possible in the long run. Depending on the recommendation of your dermatology provider and your pregnancy status, Future-Proofᴿˣ may include ingredients like tretinoin—the gold standard topical ingredient for treating aging concerns that’s more effective than over-the-counter retinol (another kind of topical retinoid)—to help fade dark spots, improve skin texture, and improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Your skincare journey doesn’t just stop when you achieve the results you want—whether that’s a glowing complexion, blemish-free skin, or an even skin tone. Taking care of your skin is a lifelong practice, and having a solid skincare routine will help you to not only achieve your skin goals, but maintain them. Future-Proofᴿˣ is formulated with dermatologist-approved ingredients like tretinoin to help keep your skin clear and defend against signs of aging by boosting collagen production, fading hyperpigmentation, and smoothing the skin’s surface. Your hydrating formula also includes soothing ingredients, such as vitamin E and aloe, which help keep skin calm as it adjusts to the active ingredients in your prescription treatment. When used consistently—along with daily broad spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher—Future-Proofᴿˣ can help prevent and smooth the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Future-Proofᴿˣ’s power is all in its effective active ingredients. Although your exact Curology formula may vary depending on what your dermatology provider determines will be most appropriate for your skin, Future-Proofᴿˣ can contain the following ingredients:
Tretinoin: Considered the gold standard of anti-aging ingredients by dermatologists, this prescription retinoid (a derivative of vitamin A) is more effective than over-the-counter retinol for treating skin concerns like aging and acne. It increases cell turnover to improve fine lines, skin tone, texture, and firmness, in addition to unclogging pores.²
Azelaic acid: This multitasking ingredient can help promote an even skin tone by reducing inflammation and hyperpigmentation.³ Like tretinoin, it also helps to unclog pores.
Niacinamide: A form of vitamin B3, this antioxidant helps fight inflammation and hyperpigmentation (including dark spots that may arise with age).⁴
Tranexamic acid: Similarly to niacinamide, tranexamic acid can help with hyperpigmentation. This ingredient works by inhibiting melanin production.⁵
While the Custom Formula is designed to treat acne, Curology Future-Proofᴿˣ is intended to maintain skincare results and help prevent signs of aging once acne is well-controlled. Think of it as the perfect next step for your skincare journey if breakouts have become a thing of your past.
Results vary from person-to-person. Remember, everyone’s skin is unique! You may start to see changes—like an improvement in the appearance of fine lines and dark spots—after a couple of months of regular use, although some people see a difference within as little time as a few weeks. Others see subtle changes after a year (or more) of use. But with consistency (and diligent use of sunscreen each and every day), you may gradually see the benefits of your personalized prescription formula, as 85% of patients say their Future-Proofᴿˣ formula has improved the appearance of their skin,* and 82% say it’s even more effective than over-the-counter skincare products they’ve purchased.*
Future-Proofᴿˣ is custom-formulated to fit right into your routine—the most important thing to do is follow your Curology provider’s instructions! If you’re new to Curology, we typically recommend a simple three-step skincare routine over incorporating complex skincare products like masks and peels (those are totally optional). When you wake up:
Wash your face with your cleanser of choice or water alone.
Moisturize with a non-comedogenic moisturizer.
Apply broad spectrum SPF 30 or higher for protection against UV rays, which can cause sun damage.
Wash your face with your cleanser of choice. Then, wait until your skin is completely dry.
Apply Future-Proofᴿˣ in a thin layer on your face and neck and leave it on overnight—don’t rinse it off!
Moisturize with a separate moisturizer, if desired.
As with any product that contains active ingredients, it’s best to start off slowly and avoid overcomplicating your skincare routine. To avoid the risk of side effects like dryness and irritation, pause your use of the following for a few weeks:
AHAs (e.g. glycolic acid or lactic acid)
BHAs (e.g. salicylic acid)
Physical exfoliators (e.g. brushes and scrubs)
While it’s totally optional to use any of these skincare products, you can generally continue using them once your skin adjusts to your Future-Proofᴿˣ formula. Always talk to your Curology dermatology provider about the best routine for your skin concerns and goals.
Retinol, another Vitamin A derivative, is generally a less effective, over-the-counter alternative to tretinoin. So while using Future-Proof, it’s unnecessary to continue using retinol on your face—though you can put it on your upper chest and the backs of your hands, recommends Curology provider Elise Griffin, PA-C.
Benzoyl peroxide, one of the most common active ingredients in over-the-counter anti-acne products, can inactivate tretinoin if they’re mixed in the same formula.⁶ It’s important to note that Twyneo is a relatively new topical medication that contains both tretinoin and benzoyl peroxide. Its formulation combines the two ingredients and keeps them stable by using new technology. That said, aside from Twyneo, both ingredients do also appear to work if one is applied at a time, with a few minutes in between applications. “If it works in your routine, I suggest that any benzoyl peroxide be applied in the am, and your personalized formula in the pm,” recommends Griffin.
As previously mentioned, we’re all about keeping things simple—when you’re using effective, clinically-proven ingredients and prescription skincare, in addition to avoiding extrinsic aging factors (like smoking and sun exposure), there’s no need to over-complicate your routine. But there are a few additional (optional!) steps you may add to your skincare routine to help prevent the earliest signs of aging, like fine lines.
Once you are able to use your Future-Proofᴿˣ formula nightly without irritation or dryness, you can consider adding other ingredients and products for an extra anti-aging “boost” to your routine. For instance, an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) can help increase collagen production in your skin and “unglue” dead skin cells that are stuck together, and an antioxidant-rich vitamin C serum can help repair fine lines and wrinkles, in addition to treating dark spots, says Griffin.
Here’s what an anti-aging skincare routine may look like:
In the morning:
Wash your face with a gentle cleanser
Apply a vitamin C serum (optional)
Apply a non-comedogenic moisturizer
Apply sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher
In the evening:
Remove makeup (if applicable)
Wash your face with a gentle cleanser and pat dry
Once or twice a week, use a chemical exfoliant such as an AHA (e.g. glycolic, lactic, or mandelic acid)—also optional!
Apply a thin layer of Future-Proofᴿˣ to your skin once it has dried and leave it on overnight
Apply a non-comedogenic moisturizer
When you want to see results, it’s best to turn to the pros for expert advice and clinically backed ingredients. Curology was founded in 2014 by dermatologist David Lortscher, who aimed to make effective skincare and licensed dermatology providers more widely accessible. Curology is a full-service skincare solution, which means that a subscription doesn’t just get products to your door—it also gives you access to medical expertise from our team of licensed dermatology providers and continued support along your skincare journey.
If you’re new to Curology, you can snap a few selfies and take a short quiz, after which a dermatology provider will prescribe you a personalized formula with clinically-proven active ingredients for your skincare goals, subject to consultation. The cost of your Curology subscription will vary depending on which other products—like our non-comedogenic physical sunscreen—you choose to add to your routine. If you ever have questions about different products or skin concerns, your dermatology provider is there to guide you.
Yes! Curology offers personalized prescription formulas with ingredients such as tretinoin, azelaic acid, tranexamic acid, and niacinamide to help smooth skin texture and treat signs of aging like fine lines and dark spots.
We offer tretinoin in our personalized prescription formulas, although we can’t guarantee you’ll be prescribed tretinoin. That depends on your skin and medical history, as well as where you are in your fertility journey. If your medical provider determines that tretinoin is a good option for you, this can be included in your Future-Proofᴿˣ formula.
At times, topical treatments for acne may be drying, which can cause fine lines and wrinkles to temporarily appear more obvious—but topical prescription treatments for acne are not known to age the skin. Some research suggests that people who experience acne may develop signs of aging like fine lines and wrinkles later than those who do not.⁷
1. M. A. Farage, et al. Intrinsic and extrinsic factors in skin ageing: a review. Int J Cosmet Sci. (April 30, 2008).
2. Hilary E. Baldwin, et al. 40 Years of Topical Tretinoin Use in Review. JDD. (June 2013).
3. Brian C. Schulte, et al. Azelaic Acid: Evidence-based Update on Mechanism of Action and Clinical Application. J Drugs Dermatol. (September 2015).
4. Jasmine C. Hollinger, et al. Are Natural Ingredients Effective in the Management of Hyperpigmentation? A Systematic Review. J Clin Aesthet Dermatol. (February 2018).
5. Seemal Desai, et al. Effect of a Tranexamic Acid, Kojic Acid, and Niacinamide Containing Serum on Facial Dyschromia: A Clinical Evaluation. JDD. (May 2019).
6. B. Martin, et al. Chemical stability of adapalene and tretinoin when combined with benzoyl peroxide in presence and in absence of visible light and ultraviolet radiation. British Journal of Dermatology. (September 1, 1998).
7. Simone Ribero, et al. Acne and Telomere Length: A New Spectrum between Senescence and Apoptosis Pathways. Journal of Investigative Dermatology. (September 27, 2016).
Elise Griffin is a certified physician assistant at Curology. She received her Master of Medical Science in physician assistant studies from Nova Southeastern University in Jacksonville, FL.
* Subject to consultation. Subscription is required. Results may vary.
*Disclaimer: In a survey of 1,704 Future-Proof Rx patients in October 2022.
*Disclaimer: *In a survey of 1,704 Future-Proof Rx patients in September 2022.
Elise Griffin, PA-C