If you've ever stared at a picture of Halle Berry and wondered how many SK-II masks it takes for her to look exactly the same as her 25-year-old self, you can stop calculating.
A new study from Harvard University, 23andMe, and Olay has suggested a possible explanation that has to do with genes rather than expensive skin care. A team of Harvard scientists led by professor of dermatology Alexa Kimball analyzed data from over 1 million people (provided by 23andMe) and found that Methuselah genes, or "younger genes" — the ones responsible for characteristics like more-effective DNA repair and the skin's ability to protect against damaging environmental factors (sunlight, etc.) — are found in one-fifth of black Americans, while only one in ten white Americans is a carrier. The presence of these genes allows some people to look ten years younger than their age, according to the paper.
Young looking celebs
Why some people get to look 25 forever
Gwen Stefani, of the band No Doubt, performs at the Global Citizen 2015 Earth Day on the National Mall, Saturday, April 18, 2015, in Washington. (Photo by Nick Wass/Invision/AP)
Shailene Woodley arrives at the premiere of "The Divergent Series: Insurgent" at the Ziegfeld Theatre on Monday, March 16, 2015, in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 07: Actor Dylan McDermott attends the 5th Annual Athena Film Festival Ceremony & Reception at Barnard College on February 7, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images for Athena Film Festival)
Elle Fanning arrives at the 8th Annual Women In Film Pre-Oscar Cocktail Party on Friday, Feb. 20, 2015, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)
Harrison Ford attends the 12th Annual Living Legends of Aviation Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on Friday, Jan 16, 2015, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Rob Latour/Invision/AP)
Iman attends a special screening of "Desert Dancer", hosted by The Cinema Society, at The Museum of Modern Art on Tuesday, April 7, 2015, in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
Halle Berry arrives at the 3rd Annual Kaleidoscope Ball on Saturday, May 2, 2015, in Culver City, Calif.(Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)
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Photo by: Dennis Van Tine/STAR MAX/IPx
Julianne Moore attends the 2015 Bookexpo in New York City.
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The study, which will be presented next week at the World Congress of Dermatology in Vancouver, has provided the science behind the colloquial explanation for why my 63-year-old mother is often mistaken for my older sister: Black don't crack.