It seems like everyone wants to look younger. Unfortunately, our skin doesn't always help us look younger. As we age, we start getting wrinkles. And the more wrinkles we get, the older we look.
You can't stop wrinkles from happening. Sooner or later, everyone will get them. But you can possibly help slow down the time when they do appear. It all depends on how you live your life.
The opposite is true, too. The way you live your life can give you more wrinkles earlier in your life.
How does your skin make wrinkles?
First, you should know what happens in your body that makes wrinkles. According to clevelandclinic.com, as you get older, your skin cells divide slower. The inner layer of the skin, which is called the dermis, also begins to thin.
The outer part of your skin changes, too. Just below the outer layer of your skin are fibers. The fibers are made from chemicals called elastin and collagen. These fibers work to support your skin. As you get older, the fibers become loose and unravel. As they break apart, it causes depressions on the skin.
Your skin also loses its ability to stretch as you age. Your skin starts having a hard time holding on to moisture. Finally, your skin starts taking longer to heal. The medical experts at clevelandclinic.com say all of the things listed above can cause wrinkles.
How does your lifestyle cause wrinkles?
Now you know how your body makes wrinkles. Now, let's talk about the things you do that make your body create wrinkles. According to WebMD, some things you do will make your skin age faster. If you can avoid doing these things, your skin may look younger, longer.
Here is WebMD's list of the things to avoid so that you look younger.
Limit the amount of sun on your skin.
Getting too much sun is the leading cause of wrinkles. So, a "healthy" tan is not really all that healthy. Tanning is really a sign of skin damage. It shows that the sun's rays have gotten under the skin. The sun's rays damage the skin's support structure. Most wrinkles are caused by sun exposure throughout your life. But do not worry; it's never too late to stop this process.
Here's what you need to do. Wear sunscreen with sun protection factor of at least 15. On packages of sunscreen, the sun protection factor is usually called SPF. The rays of the sun will hurt your hands and face most. This is because they are usually the most exposed part of your body. So, you should put sunscreen on your hands and face every time you go outside.
Smoking is bad for your heart and lungs – and your skin. Smoking speeds up the aging process. It wrinkles your skin and makes you look older than your real age.
You can see early wrinkling under a microscope in smokers as young as 20. If you keep smoking, as you get older, more wrinkles will occur. Wrinkles are also more likely to be deeper in smokers. Tobacco smoke gives skin an unhealthy color and rough texture, as well. If you do not want to look like a senior citizen while you're young, stop smoking.
The faces you make could cause wrinkles.
People call wrinkles at the corners of the eyes "crow's feet." If you have wrinkles between your eyebrows, those are called "frown lines." Small muscle movements could cause wrinkles. Over your lifetime, frowning, smiling, or squinting can cause wrinkles.
You can take steps to reduce the wrinkles. For example, wear sunglasses to avoid squinting in the sun.
The way you sleep can cause wrinkles.
Do you sleep on your back, your stomach, or your side? The way you sleep may actually cause wrinkles. Even if you have a very soft pillow, sleeping puts pressure on your face. Over years, this can press lines into your chin, cheeks, or forehead.
To reduce the wrinkles that sleeping can cause, you can sleep on your back. People who don't sleep with their face on a pillow do not get sleep lines.
Frequent dieting can cause wrinkles.
WebMD.com says that certain types of diets can cause wrinkles. Some people lose a lot of weight and then gain it back. This is called yo-yo dieting. Some experts believe that years of repeated yo-yo dieting can damage the skin. When you gain weight, your skin stretches. Then, if you lose weight, your skin shrinks back. But if your weight goes up and down a lot, the skin may not bounce back. Repeated stretching of the skin may damage your skin's elastic structure. And that structure gives your skin a youthful, firm tone.
How can you prevent wrinkles caused by yo-yo dieting? If you decide to lose weight, do it at a slower pace. Most experts say you should lose a pound a week. Avoid binge eating, which leads to fast weight gain that could stretch your skin.
Prevent wrinkles through diet and nutrition.
Your skin is your body's largest organ. Like your heart and brain, your skin needs good nutrition to at its work best. The skin needs B vitamins and the vitamin called biotin. These vitamins help make new, healthy skin cells.
Many other vitamins can help your skin, too. Vitamins C and E are known as antioxidants. They can protect skin and reduce damage from the sun. Vitamin A helps to maintain and repair skin tissue.
Where can you get these helpful vitamins? It's easy. Just eat a balanced, healthy diet full of fresh fruits and vegetables. Five to seven servings a day are best. Tomatoes have biotin and vitamin C. Carrots have both biotin and vitamin A. Green leafy vegetables and almonds are loaded with vitamin E.
Clevelandclinic.com lists other foods that help prevent wrinkles. These foods are high in antioxidants. Antioxidants are substances that may protect your cells against the effects of free radicals. Free radicals are made when your body breaks down food. They are also come from tobacco smoke and radiation.
So, it's helpful to eat foods that are high in antioxidants. Foods high in antioxidants include dark berries such as blueberries, cranberries, blackberries, and raspberries. Beans are also high in antioxidants, including red beans, kidney beans, and pinto beans. Also, drinks that may be helpful include green tea, red wine, and coffee.
Water is an easy way to stop wrinkles.
As you get older, your skin becomes thinner and drier. So it becomes more important to drink plenty of water. That way, you replace the water your body is losing. WebMD.com suggests that you should drink six to eight glasses of water a day. But talk to your doctor first. This is important if you have had heart failure or are on dialysis.
Some products help stop wrinkles, too.
We've learned that things you do to the inside of your body can cause wrinkles. These can make you look older than your real age. The American Academy of Dermatologists, or the AAD, also has some skin-protecting suggestions. And their suggestions don't cost a lot of money.
Keeping your skin healthy and slowing down wrinkles doesn't always mean breaking the bank. Dermatologists are doctors who treat the skin. Just follow these practical tips from leading dermatologists:
- Cleanse, treat, and prevent. Once every 12 hours, use some sort of treatment or product on your skin. This can include sunscreen.
- Use sunscreen 365 days a year. This helps prevent sun damage that could lead to wrinkles.
- Get the most from your body moisturizer. In winter, put moisturizer on damp skin when you get out of the shower. This will lock in moisture.
- Consider using petroleum jelly. This common product might help prevent wrinkles.
- Remember, a more expensive skin care product is not necessarily more effective. Some brands contain fragrances that may lead to skin problems.
- Consider products that do more than one thing. Examples include a moisturizer plus sunscreen and a lip balm with sunscreen.
- Get the most for your hard-earned money. When choosing anti-aging products, you should look for vitamin A and alpha hydroxy acid as ingredients.
Wrinkles cannot be stopped. But they can be delayed.
Sooner or later, everyone is going to get wrinkles. They are just a part of getting older. But if you make some small lifestyle changes, you can delay when they appear. You can also slow down the appearance of wrinkles with certain products. And always remember, it's not how old you look. It's how young you feel.