STYLE & BEAUTY
08/10/2015 09:36 am ET

Here's The Deal With Using Neck Cream

Do you really need a special cream devoted to your neck? Yes and no.

In our anti-aging skincare stash, there is no shortage of facial moisturizers, eye creams and night serums to help smooth fine lines and fade age spots. But when it comes to targeting these noticeable signs of aging below the chin, our regimen is seriously lacking specific products for the neck. 

Aside from the eyelids and hands, the neck is another area that reveals how fast you're aging. The skin on the neck is thinner than the skin on your face so it loses elasticity before most body parts. Yet, people still neglect to give it the TLC it truly needs. 

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While Nora Ephron had a hilarious take on this topic in her book, "I Feel Bad About My Neck: And Other Thoughts on Being a Woman," we went straight to a doctor to find out whether we really need neck creams.

Gervaise Gerstner, a consulting dermatologist for L’Oréal Paris, strongly suggests treating the face, neck and chest as one body unit. "The ingredients that are a must for these areas are glycolic acid peels (helps with discoloration and prompts the production of new collagen and elastin), SPF (sun protection), retinol (re-texturizes and reduces fine lines and wrinkles) and growth factors (stimulates collagen and elasticity)," she said.

While Gerstner believes there isn't a singular magical anti-aging ingredient for the neck, she stands by treating the neck just as aggressively as the face. "Just invest in high-quality face products, which can double as neck and chest products," she said.

Should you need treatment that's a bit more aggressive, Gerstner observes that the neck texture responds well to in-office treatments such as Fraxel laser, Botox and vertical bands to draw back the neck to appear tighter. Thermage is another skin tightening option for improving  jawline laxity.

For practical and preventative anti-aging options, shop our editors' picks below for some of the best firming and hydrating body moisturizers as well as neck creams.

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