If her makeup-free selfies on Instagram are any indication, Gabrielle Union is aging in reverse.
The actress, activist and author is now 48 years old (no, that's not a typo!), but could easily pass for at least 20 years younger—which she partly attributes to her oily complexion.
"When you're a teenager and it's causing havoc on your skin, it feels like the worst thing in the world," she explained to Us Weekly. "But as you get older, that oil is sort of like embalming fluid, if you will. It keeps you youthful-looking."
Unlike many of her celebrity peers, she hasn't gone down the injectables route just yet. "I get asked all the time how I look so young. I don't like needles. I'm not going to rule out Botox, but the idea of putting a needle in my face... I'm not there yet," she told Women's Health.
So what's her secret to looking this ageless?
Real talk: "I have pretty oily skin, I drink a lot of water, I don't smoke, and I don't have a hard life."
In fact, I'd say it is Gabrielle's devotion to self-care above all—rather than any specific skincare products—that gives her a lit-from-within glow.
Read on to find out how she looks after her skin, inside and out.
Gabrielle’s Morning Skincare Routine
Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash Pink Grapefruit Facial Cleanser: "[In] the shower, I use a pink grapefruit face wash by Neutrogena."
Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash Pink Grapefruit Foaming Scrub: "Right now I still use my Neutrogena pink grapefruit facial scrub and cleanser. I was with Neutrogena [as a spokesperson] for 10 years, and I'm no longer with them and the products still speak for themselves. Especially around that time of the month, I tend to use more products with salicylic acid and they're just a brand that I trust and have been using for a really long time."
Mario Badescu Toner: "[Then] my Mario Badescu toner... oil, and a sunblock."
4. Face Oil
Mirigal High Voltage Oil: "I started using this Mirigal oil underneath my makeup before work and that's been really amazing. It gives your skin this perfect canvas to put your makeup on."
Neutrogena Age Shield Face Oil-Free Sunscreen SPF 110: "I was a Neutrogena spokesperson for 10 years, and they taught me the importance of daily sunscreen. I go SPF 110. I don't mess around. A lot of people, especially women of colour, don't think they are at risk, which is not the case. Everyone's like, 'Black people don't burn," but yes, we burn as well—so do Latinas, Asians and everyone else... if I have to be worried about it, everyone has to be worried about it."
Kevyn Aucoin The Sensual Skin Enhancer: "On days I have breakouts, I'll use a concealer. [But] for the most part, I feel most like myself without makeup. It's how my friends and my husband and my loved ones appreciate me most... because I think makeup can be a mask, and I think the older we get, that we feel like the more makeup we have, the better we look. Sometimes it just looks like an older woman with a lot of freaking makeup on."
Fenty Beauty Sun Stalk'r Instant Warmth Bronzer: "I feel pretty good about where I'm at [with my skin] but wanted to pop my skin with a little something for these Zoom calls without putting on a full face of makeup. I saw someone online say they only use concealer and bronzer... I tried it and didn't even use concealer, just my Fenty Beauty bronzer [in] Caramel Cutie."
MAC Powder Blush: "A makeup artist taught me to use my blush as eyeshadow, too, which I do with my favourite MAC shade, Loudspeaker."
9. Lip Balm
Honest Beauty Magic Balm: "The lip balm is not goopy. Jess has managed to figure out a lip balm that absorbs and leaves your lips soft and supple. The woman knows her lip balm and I want kissable lips like Jessica Alba."
Gabrielle’s Nighttime Skincare Routine
1. Face Wipes
Makeup wipes: "After shooting, when I'm in the car heading home, I'll immediately take off all my makeup with makeup wipes. Don't go to sleep with your makeup on."
Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash Pink Grapefruit Facial Cleanser: "I like using a facial cleanser with salicylic acid in it to help combat breakouts before they start. When I'm shooting, I usually use Neutrogena's grapefruit cleanser."
Mario Badescu Toner: "That's pretty much daily."
Luzern Serum: "I'm kind of obsessed with the Luzern line; I use a lot of their products."
Luzern Force de Vie Pure Oxygen Crème Luxe: "As I've gotten older, my skin has become immune to things that worked a couple of years ago, so lately it's been a lot of trial and error. I like the Luzern skincare line."
Neutrogena Rapid Tone Repair Night Moisturizer: "Lately, I've been going through a hormonal shift and getting blemishes. My saving grace has been Rapid Tone Repair, which helps fade dark marks."
6. Face Oil
Julie Hewett 100% Organic Camellia Oil: "I apply the Julie Hewett Organic Camellia Oil at night to nourish my face. I was lucky enough to work with Julie Hewett, who's a makeup artist who also has her own skincare line. And she gave me her face oil. I thought, 'This just feels redundant, why would I put oil on top of oil?' It's really transformed my skin. I started using it this summer when we were filming Sleepless Nights in Atlanta, and I swear by it. I've told everybody about it. I'm not a paid spokesperson, but this oil is a godsend. It's amazing. And it's just a couple drops, and I've used it on my neck or my face. I don't want to call it a wonder product, but for lack of a better word, it's a wonder product."
Gabrielle’s Skincare Treatments
Skin by Tatum: "I love a good facial. For a lot of us women, every month you go through a crazy hormone situation, so I treat myself when I feel bloated and unattractive. I might still be bloated afterward, but I try to make myself cute. I go to Skin by Tatum. I swear by her. She doesn't actually shoot anything [into my face], but if there's a cream that she can rub in, or peel or mask or whatever, I'm gonna try it."
Cold tea bags: "For my face, I keep it old school. This week, we're on nights, so sleep is hard to come by. I've had puffiness. I chill some tea bags—right now it's Lipton—and use them on my under-eye."
Lip scrub: "I recently started making a lip scrub with olive oil and brown sugar. I use it to scrub the dead skin off my lips—it leaves them feeling so smooth and plump!"
Ice water: "Sometimes, if I'm really dead to the world, I'll submerge my face in ice water. Not only does it wake you up, but it'll also tighten your pores and make your skin feel smooth."
Gabrielle’s Diet, Exercise and Lifestyle
"What good is it to be emaciated and your stomach's always growling if you're not enjoying life? That sucks. Have a burger! You can't do it every meal, but don't deprive yourself. If you want the donut, have the donut. I try to make my plate like a rainbow. So if you can work in some sweet potatoes or yams or yellow peppers, just to try to make your plate as colourful as possible. Lean meats—I mean, I love a rib-eye, but I try to go for leaner cuts of meat."
Alisa Vitti: "[During IVF treatments,] my face looked like the surface of the moon, small chunks of hair were falling out. At 9 a.m. I had a flat stomach. By noon I looked like I was five months pregnant. [Alisa] said, ‘Cut out gluten, dairy, alcohol and caffeine and see if the swelling alleviates and it helps with your skin and hair.' I felt like she was trying to torture me. So I did it for six weeks. Then I was like, 'I need a drink!'"
"As my skin has changed over the years, I've been a little more diligent about what I'm putting into my body. So for skin food I've been doing a beet, carrot and kale pressed juice probably every other day. Those juices have been really helpful."
"Lifestyle-wise, the biggest change, honestly, came in my early 30s when I started drinking a gallon of water a day. I know, it's a lot. And when I'm really dieting hardcore or getting ready for a project, I sometimes go up to two gallons. Your coworkers will definitely think you have a drug problem because you'll be in the bathroom a lot, but it's the best thing you can do for your skin, hair, nails—everything. It's the easiest and cheapest anti-aging secret I can pass along."
"I like to mix it up so I don't get anxiety staring at the treadmill. Cardio could be jumping jacks, running up my driveway, side shuffles like I used to do in basketball, an elliptical, treadmill, or sled pushes."
"I'm not a morning person, but I have to work out early because of my schedule. The great thing about Pilates is that I can take out my annoyance from waking up early on the machines instead of human beings. It's for the greater good. My body responds to it, and I'm also more clear."
"I swear by massages every week."
South Beach Acupuncture: "I started getting acupuncture from this great guy in Miami, James Rohr. [My husband, Dwyane Wade] was getting it for migraines. I saw how much it really helped him and thought, 'Hey, I have a host of ailments.' Going from day to night shoots, you can get insomnia. It's helped me with that."
"The advice I would give to my younger self 10 years ago would be that you don't have all the answers. Don't stress out. Some of your day ones have been hating since day one, and getting rid of toxic people is probably the best anti-aging thing you could do in your life because a terrible crowd will age you like cigarettes."
"My best anti-aging tip is the ability to say no, no, and hell, no. We run ourselves ragged saying yes to every freaking thing, whether it's to our family, spouses or careers. I sleep eight hours a day and don't let myself stress out. A lot of people call it selfish, but I don't have any wrinkles."
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