3 Reasons Why Minka Kelly Looks Younger than Her Age

Actress Minka Kelly is geared to make a splash in her new movie, where she plays Jackie Kennedy.  Yet in real life, the 32-year-old has managed to play a teenager on Friday Night Lights until she was nearly 30.  How did she do it?

1.)  She uses moisturizers religiously.

Minka Kelly at 2007 NBC Upfronts

Want skin like Minka’s? Don’t forget to moisturize!

“I make sure to wash my face every night before I go to bed. I’ve been using eye cream since I was 19, and moisturizer. I can’t get out of the shower without fully lathering my whole face and body with moisturizer,” Minka says.

Why it makes sense scientifically:  Even the most basic moisturizer makes a difference in the skin over time, because it gives the skin a chance to rest, according to Dr. Fredric Brandt, M.D.  When the skin is properly hydrated and protected, it devotes less energy towards repair and more towards activities like maintaining collagen production.  What’s more, lipid-rich moisturizers help the skin be less susceptible to allergens and irritants, according to research published in Acta Venereology Derm in 2003.

2.)  She has olive skin.

Why it makes sense scientifically:  Though it’s unfair, those with the darkest skin tones have a built-in SPF of up to 10 (British Journal of Dermatology, 2002).  While Minka is not this dark, the olive of her complexion stems from extra melanin, which imparts her more sun protection than pale-skinned women (British Journal of Dermatology, 2002).  And you can’t mimic the effects by getting a “base tan,” either:  Those with naturally darker skin have larger melanin-producing cells (called melanosomes).  People with darker skin have more melanosomes that last longer and produce more UV-protective melanin than in lighter-skinned individuals (Nature, 1969).

So what can the pale-skinned do?  Wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 daily.  And don’t depend on foundations or powders with SPF, either:  Studies show people apply 1/14th the amount needed for the SPF on the bottle, giving you an SPF of 1.1 from a product labeled SPF 15.  Not cool.

3.)  She wears her hair right.

HOLLYWOOD, CA - JANUARY 29:  Actress Minka Kel...

Just a small wave can make hair look more thick and voluminous – and hence make you look younger. (Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife)

Why it makes sense scientifically:  Though 32 is still quite young, hair loss can begin in women any time after the teenage years, with 20 to 40 million women in the U.S. affected (Cosmetic Dermatology).  As one ages, hair tends to become thinner and less luminous as well.  By wearing her hair in a voluminous style regularly, Minka makes the most of what she’s got, giving off clear signs of youth.  The lighter dyed portions of Minka’s hair also temporarily cause the cuticle to swell, making hair temporarily fuller and thicker.  Unfortunately, dye will also dry your hair out over time, so it’s a toss-up there.

Bottom Line

Minka Kelly looks significantly younger than 32 because she has naturally slightly-olive skin; moisturizes regularly; and wears her hair in youth-enhancing voluminous styles.

What are your thoughts on this piece?  Let me know!

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5 thoughts on “3 Reasons Why Minka Kelly Looks Younger than Her Age

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