9 Wrinkle-Smoothing Serums That Actually Keep My 33-Year-Old Forehead Smooth

No one talks about it, but being a selfie-taking beauty editor and writer in 2018 can be anxiety-inducing. We’re supposed to be the pioneers of “flawless” skin with no hormonal pimples, minimal discoloration, and wrinkle-free skin. But really, we’re just like everyone else.

We drink (some of us even smoke—I know), get fewer than seven hours of sleep (often), accidentally have that extra hangover-inducing margarita (and the tequila shot). Oh—and we eat lots and lots of sugary, buttery treats at those fun beauty events. This all adds up to the perfect recipe for “bad” skin.

Then we’re expected to take #selfies, sharing our “glows” with the world. Bring on the filters, face-tuning apps, and emergency appointments to the derm. My advice: There is no quick fix for beautiful skin. Topical creams, injections, lasers, facials, and the like can only take you so far. Your skin is your largest organ, and it reflects what’s going on internally, health- and stress-wise.

That said, I personally do rely on one product category to keep things fresh and smooth, regardless of how many glasses of champagne I drank at my best friend’s engagement party. This secret weapon is called a targeted wrinkle-fighting formula. Unlike your go-to moisturizer, it works to instantly plump skin, fill in lines, and keep everything looking creaseless.

Wrinkle fillers are usually made of more advanced structural molecules of hyaluronic acid that are cross-linked and therefore act as a sponge to draw in water and plump up the skin cells quicker and for longer periods of time,” Marnie Nussbaum, MD, a top dermatologist in NYC, tells Byrdie.

Patricia Wexler, MD, another in-demand dermatologist in NYC, agrees. “They give longer-lasting results and stimulate your own collagen production,” she explains. “In other words, wrinkle fillers are actually changing the structure of the skin, not just hydrating. They give immediate and long-lasting benefits. The technology has evolved to bring larger particles that help attract water and plump lines while still delivering the line-erasing results.”

While I started using these in my 30s (I’m now 33), Nussbaum said you can begin when you notice a change in your skin’s texture. “A topical wrinkle filler could be used as soon as fine lines appear,” she notes. “The immediate and long-lasting hydration will minimize the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.” Wexler adds that factors leading to wrinkles are smoking, genetics, pollution, photodamage, weight fluctuation, and poor health (basically, many of the woes I mentioned earlier!).

Use this product in your routine after your anti-aging serum, advises Wexler. Serum is usually lighter than the wrinkle filler, and you don’t want the former to interfere with the function of the latter’s active ingredients.

Here, I share my tried-and-tested favorites for keeping me feeling confident and camera-ready.

Up next, learn how this dermatologist-recommended supplement can help reduce premature aging of the skin.