As we age gracefully our bodies naturally change. These differences can be visible, like fine lines and wrinkles on the face. However, we can slow down the ageing process by altering and improving our lifestyle and skincare routines. Upgrading your lifestyle and skincare habits can improve the way you look and feel about yourself. Read on to find out how to prevent your skin from ageing.
Firstly we need to know what these are and how they are formed. Wrinkles are creases that form in our skin. Some wrinkles can be deep crevices or furrows and may be more noticeable around the eyes, mouth and neck. Wrinkles are formed by the cause of many factors, for some you can control and some you can’t. For instance: the natural process of ageing- naturally the skin loses its elasticity. UV exposure- ultraviolet radiation exposure rapidly increases the signs of ageing. Smoking- which can increase the ageing process of the skin and damage collagen. Facial expressions- persistent facial movements like squinting or laughing can lead to fine lines (still keep smiling though).
Sun Protection Factor (SPF)
Sunlight contains UVA (ultraviolet A) and UVB (ultraviolet B) radiation. The sun emits these two types of rays and reaches our skin. Both types damage unprotected skin in their unique ways.
UVA rays are known as the sun’s silent killers as they are the major cause of wrinkles and skin cancer. These rays speed up the ageing process by stimulating wrinkles, age spots, crippled skin texture, and damaging collagen and elastin. UVB rays are mainly responsible for superficial sunburn and skin damage that causes significant hyperpigmentation, peeling, flaking and cripply skin.
It is important to wear an SPF every day, even on cloudy days. This will ensure your skin is protected from UV exposure. An SPF of at least 30 is recommended with regular reapplication throughout the day for optimal protection.
Retinol is a type of retinoid which is made from vitamin A. It is well known for its significant anti-ageing benefits. There are different forms of vitamin A with various potencies and strengths.
Retinol helps boost collagen production and aids in cellular turnover. This results in a more even, smoother skin surface and helps reduce the appearance of sunspots, fine lines, and wrinkles.
Incorporating a retinol-based product into your skincare regime can kickstart collagen production to slow down the ageing process. Be sure to use a suitable concentration for your skin type.
Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that can neutralize free radicals. Its popularity comes from the benefits- collagen synthesis, brightening the complexion, reducing pigmentation issues and evening out skin tone and discolouration.
Vitamin C plays an important role in collagen synthesis as it provides our skin support and structure. As our skin degrades, this helps to repair and restructure the skin. As a powerful antioxidant, its main function is to protect the skin from environmental stressors. Exposure to pollution creates free radicals in the skin which damages the cells- stimulating wrinkles.
Using a Vitamin C will encourage collagen synthesis to reduce fine lines and wrinkles. This will ensure the skin is protected whilst strengthening the cells and structure.
Collagen And Peptides
Collagen is a naturally occurring structural protein that is important for the normal functioning of the body. This plays a vital role in skin health as it forms part of the connective tissue that keeps the skin firm and supple. It also helps the skin’s natural renewal process, where old skin cells are shed to make way for new cells that help the skin glow.
Peptides are amino acids (proteins) that can stimulate the production of collagen and elastin fibres. They are responsible for the strength and texture of the skin. It is well known for reducing fine lines and wrinkles, increasing firmness and elasticity, smoothing skin texture and strengthening the skin barrier.
These ingredients can keep the skin firm and tight whilst treating wrinkles. Strengthening the skin with collagen and peptides boost skin health and encourage youthful skin.
Hyaluronic acid is a humectant that has the unique ability to retain moisture. It is recognised for reducing fine lines and wrinkles due to its capacity to retain large amounts of water and filling in wrinkles. It has healing properties to wounds and aids in pain relief.
The antioxidant helps keep the skin looking plump and healthy. It is a naturally occurring substance found in our skin and holds 1,000 times its weight in water. This helps lock in moisture and keeps the skin smooth and supple.
Feeding the skin hyaluronic acid can help plump and soften the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. When applied topically, it acts like a sponge by attracting moisture to boost hydration on the surface of the skin. This keeps the skin fresh and healthy.
Glycolic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) that can stimulate cellular renewal. Its popularity comes from its efficacy in removing dead skin cells revealing a brighter and even complexion.
Glycolic acid helps to brighten hyperpigmentation, sun damage and uneven skin tone. It can improve the appearance of wrinkles, dry patches and melasma. Increased cell regeneration allows new skin cells to form whilst softening the appearance of wrinkles, age spots and pigmentation.
This is a great exfoliating ingredient to incorporate into your skincare routine. Whilst removing dead skin cells, glycolic acid can reduce wrinkles by boosting collagen and elastin- the building blocks of the skin.
Not only does smoking cause internal damage, but it can also have a visible effect on the skin too. Nicotine and any other smoking behaviour can contribute to premature ageing and deep wrinkles.
Nicotine causes blood vessels to narrow, reducing oxygen flow and nutrients to skin cells. This causes the skin to become dull, lacklustre and problematic. It can damage structures necessary for skin elasticity and health. This causes the skin to sag and lack firmness.
Repetitive squinting and lip pursing contribute to lines around the mouth and eyes. Heat and un-inhaled smoke may dry and damage the surface of the skin. This can lead to dehydration lines.
It is important to stop smoking to prevent the skin from ageing. In the market, there are alternatives and treatments to help you stop smoking more easily.
Reduce Alcohol Intake
Alcohol is one of the worst, most aggressive compounds to destroy your skin. Alcohol inflames the tissue, and systemic inflammation to the skin is caused. This creates a histamine reaction- that creates the redness, the flushing of the skin. Few years down the line of continuous drinking, the skin can be prominent to facial redness.
Alcohol removes the fluid in the skin which can increase the appearance of wrinkles, dryness and sagging skin. It actively draws water away from the body, therefore causing dehydration. When the skin is dehydrated, the skin forms dehydration lines and discomfort.
Moderation is key. Always take a reduced amount of alcohol and try not to consume more than you need. Also, in between drinking, consume larger amounts of water.
Avoid Repetitive Facial Expressions
Repetitive facial movements and expressions, such as squinting or smiling, can lead to fine lines and wrinkles. Each time you use a facial muscle, a groove forms beneath the surface of the skin. And as skin ages, it loses its flexibility and is no longer able to spring back in place. These grooves then become permanent features on your face.
Frown lines, smile lines, crows feet, marionette lines, forehead lines are the most common and quickly developing wrinkles that can form. Try to be conscious of your facial expressions without putting too much pressure or strain on the facial muscles.
Eat Vitamin Rich Foods
When we fill our diet with nutritious foods blasting with essential vitamins, minerals and nutrients, not only do our organs thank us, so does the largest organ- our skin. Eating vitamin-rich foods is the safest, easiest and healthiest way to prevent your skin from ageing.
Consuming dark leafy greens like kale rich in vitamin A, C, K and B, magnesium, iron and calcium help keep the skin clean and healthy. Red Peppers loaded with antioxidants like vitamin C and carotenoids help increase collagen production and protect and strengthen the skin.
Fruits and berries that are rich in vitamin A and C with an antioxidant called anthocyanin, help protect skin from damage from sun exposure and pollution. This moderates the inflammatory response and prevents collagen loss.
Drink Water And Stay Hydrated
Water is essential to maintaining optimal skin moisture and delivering vital nutrients to the skin cells. It helps to replenish the skin tissue and assists in increasing its elasticity, resulting in a delay in the onset of ageing, like wrinkles and fine lines.
Our skin is the largest organ of the body. Regular and plentiful water consumption can improve the colour and texture of the skin, by ensuring cellular turnover time is optimal.
Drinking 8 glasses of water can be difficult sometimes. You could carry a water bottle with you everywhere and consume it throughout the day.
Get A Good Night’s Sleep
Sleep has been proven to lower stress levels, reduce inflammation, and help us maintain a healthy mind and body. It can also improve the appearance and function of the skin.
While we’re sleeping, our skin switches into recovery mode and it’s an important time of repair and regeneration. After hours of exposure to UV and pollution, the skin needs time to heal.
The nightly renewal process is when you will get the most benefits from your anti-ageing products, and having enough sleep is necessary for ensuring the renewal process is successful.
Sleep is essential for cellular repair and regeneration. A maximum of 8 hours is recommended. If you struggle with sleep there are many products in the market to aid in sleep and relaxation.
Prevent Your Skin From Ageing
Following these steps and improving your lifestyle and skincare habits can have a huge impact on your skin and the way you feel. It is all about balance, health and choosing the correct routine for you.