We hate to break it to you, but...once they appear, wrinkles can only be truly reversed by medical or surgical intervention. As we age, we produce about 1% less of collagen per year and our skin loses elasticity drastically. This process can be accelerated by a variety of lifestyle habits that dry and thin our skin, making it prone to fine lines and wrinkling. The great news is that there are some steps you can take as of today (and at no matter what age!) to delay or reduce their appearance.
WHAT CAUSES WRINKLES?
Approximately 10% of the skin’s aging is caused by what we call intrinsic factors–meaning the natural aging processes in which biological functions weaken. When our skin is depleted of collagen, elastin and adequate hydration, it begins to lose its healthy appearance.
However, the heaviest hitter is extrinsic aging, which accounts for 90% wrinkle formation. Intrinsic aging is unavoidable and happens to everyone; extrinsic aging is preventable.
Lifestyle factors that can speed up skin aging include excess alcohol consumption, smoking, and exposure to environmental stressors like pollution, blue light and UV rays. These factors increase the skin’s exposure to free radicals and oxidative stress, which over time, causes inflammation and premature aging.
HOW CAN YOU PREVENT WRINKLES?
Sun Protection: Sun exposure is the No. 1 reason for signs of aging in the skin, so we cannot stress enough how important SPF is when it comes to preventing premature aging. A good, daily sunscreen (applied rain or shine, inside or outside!) will protect your skin and prevent the onset of wrinkles.
- Vitamin C is the best antioxidant around when it comes to protecting the skin from free radical damage. Applying once a day in the morning before your moisturizer and SPF is the way to go!
- If you’re looking for plump, smooth, hydrated skin, Hyaluronic Acid (HA) is your best friend. Moisturizers and serums can't entirely prevent wrinkles, but high-quality ones with HA will physically trap water inside the skin, temporarily masking those pesky lines and creases.
- Retinoids (also referred to as retinols) are one of the top anti-aging ingredients. Retinols have the ability to increase collagen production, slough off dead skin cells and help repair sun-damaged skin through increased skin regeneration. In turn, this plumps the skin and rapidly gives it the appearance of smoother texture. Each retinoid has a slightly different degree of potency: some are available OTC, while others are available by prescription only.
So, there you have it. As we mentioned, you can’t eliminate wrinkles altogether––but why would you? They are made to embrace, and they are reminders of good laughs and days lived. Yes, we all age and wrinkle: but we can always make it healthy and beautiful.
Until next time,