Take a look at the images below \u2013 Halle Berry and Nicole Kidman \u2013 similar in age yet you can see more lines and sagginess in Nicole\u2019s face \u2013 especially around her eyes. While these women both look amazing for being in their late 40\u2019s, Halle maintains a much younger looking appearance.There is an age-old adage, \u201cblack don\u2019t crack\u201d that I hear a lot as an African American woman and dermatologist. The adage refers to the tendency for people with darker skin to retain their youthful appearances, despite advancing in age. There is some interesting science behind this idea that people with darker skin do not age as early as their light-skinned counterparts. It turns out that genetics do play a helpful hand in helping those with darker skin tones to age later. When we talk about aging, there are two elements to consider: Chronological aging and photo-aging. The first part of this \u2013 chronological \u2013 is the actual passing of years. We cannot stop the passing of years that will leave their mark. Photo-aging is aging that happens as a result of damage from Ultraviolet (UV) light. Darker skin contains more melanin which protects the body from UV rays. When there is less melanin, there is more chance of damage to the elasticity beneath the skin\u2019s surface. This damage causes wrinkled, dry skin. Additionally, the body will attempt to produce additional melanin as a defense mechanism, but this can result in age or liver spots on the surface of the skin which also contribute to an older appearance. Despite the genetics that help African American woman retain their youthfulness, a good skincare routine will go a long way to ensure that skin remains healthy and glowing. Living a healthy lifestyle is also important \u2013 if your diet is lacking and you aren\u2019t getting enough sleep it\u2019s going to show! Genetics alone are not going to protect anybody from the signs of aging! Aging gracefullyI believe that everybody should be allowed to age with grace \u2013 in their own personal way. \u00a0Proper skincare routines started from an early age\u00a0will help to ensure healthy skin and will go a long way to help prevent the signs of aging coming too early. \u00a0\u00a0Once the aging process begins, there are plenty of\u00a0non-surgical options that will help to mask the signs of aging.My personal anti-aging routine is as follows (affiliate links):1. I wash my face a with a gentle cleanser twice a day. Some brands I love are Vanicream Facial Cleanser, Hydropeptide Cleansing Gel, and Cetaphil Facial Cleanser.2. I have acne, so I then apply my morning acne medication, followed by a moisturizer with sunscreen. I love Aveeno Positively Radiant and CeraVe AM Lotion. They both have SPF 30, which is a great sunscreen for the cooler months. In summer time, I use Spf 50 for added protection.3. Once a week, I use a home peel. My current favorite is the Hydropetide Plump and Polish Peel, which has microdermabraision crystals that help minimize the appearance of my prominent pores.4.\u00a0 As I am in my mid-thirties, I have now started to pay a little bit more attention to preventing aging around my eyes, so I use an eye cream called\u00a0Eye Authority\u00a0as well as a\u00a0lash product\u00a0that has resulted in fabulous thick eyelashes.5. Twice a year, I get Botox in my forehead which helps me maintain a soft, wrinkle free look.6. Lastly, I get chemical peels every 3 months, for added deep exfoliation and prevention of dark spots, and fine lines and wrinkles.