Yes, you certainly age every time you blow out your birthday candle! While it’s true that a little bit of those fine lines here and there flags the wisdom that you’ve earned throughout the years, it becomes definitely problematic if you look much older than your real age. Once you notice that you’re starting to look much older than other people your age, it’s time to do something about things you’ve been doing wrong to your skin.
Listed below are ten tips to help you give your skin more TLC and even reverse skin aging.
- Use a Broad Spectrum Sunscreen with at Least an SPF30: The sun is your skin’s worst enemy. No matter what skin care product or procedure you undergo, if you have chronically exposed you skin to the sun’s harmful UV rays over the years, you have already predisposed yourself for premature aging. Sun damage may not instantly show but the damage accumulates underneath your skin.
Other than using sunscreen, use an English hat, sunglasses, and long-sleeved shirt to provide an extra barrier between the sun’s UV rays and your skin. Consider getting a darker tint if you spend a considerable number of hours inside your car.
- If you are a Smoker, it’s Best to Quit Now: Next to the sun, smoking is the second common cause of premature aging. Cigarette smoke contains thousands of harmful chemicals which do not only damage your skin but your overall health as well. The heat of the smoke and the repeated facial expression brought about by the act of smoking itself injures the skin, causes it to dry, and generally makes skin more prone to wrinkling. What’s worse is that smoking slows down collagen production, thereby suffering skin cell repair processes.
- Drink Less Alcohol and More Water: Alcohol, if taken in moderation, will not damage your skin. In fact, regular red wine drinkers have been observed to age slowly, and tend not to develop diabetes and memory loss. Red wine contains polyphenols and resveratrol, powerful antioxidants that help protect the skin from the damaging effects of free radicals. Healthy serving of red wine is only one glass per day. To help keep skin moisturized from within, drink plenty of water throughout the day.
- Improve* Intake of Natural Antioxidants: Colorful vegetables and fruits contain high levels of antioxidants, including Vitamin A, C, and E which help fight skin damage by protecting the skin from free radicals. Foods which contain high levels of these essential vitamins and antioxidants are often very colourful. Great examples are carrots, mangoes, red bell peppers, oranges, and green leafy veggies.
- Include Healthy Oils in Your Diet: Omega-3 fatty acids do great things for your skin and your heart. Omega-3 helps lower cholesterol levels and helps keep skin supple to touch. Trout, salmon, and tuna are your best sources for omega-3. Cook with extra virgin olive oil which contains the highest amounts of monounsaturated oil which means it helps significantly lower cholesterol levels and generally good for the heart. Extra virgin olive oil also contains high levels of antioxidants that help protect skin from damage.
- Exercise Daily: Only a regular workout can give you a naturally glowing skin. Regular exercise pumps up your heart, promotes* healthy blood circulation, and ensures that oxygen and essential nutrients are distributed throughout the body to effectively fuel cellular repair processes. A healthy blood circulation helps repair and rejuvenate skin.
- Sleep Well: Many of the body’s repair and renewal processes, including skin repair, occur when you sleep. Too little rest and sleep causes skin to dry and break, making it more prone to wrinkles.
- Avoid Negative Stress: Unnecessary anger and a worrisome attitude do not help you solve the root of the problem. They only give you fine lines and wrinkles. Take on a more carefree attitude and practice better ways to handle negative stress. Find things that help relax your tensed body and mind like taking a hot bath or listening to soothing music. Stop allowing stress from controlling you rather, put it under control. Else, stress will make permanent marks on your skin, and that’s not a souvenir you’d want to keep.
- Avoid Repetitive Facial Expressions: The more expressive you are, the more likely you will develop fine lines and wrinkles earlier. Wrinkles, in fact, are creases borne out of repetitive facial expressions. If you squint, get your eyes checked. It may be a sign of eye damage.
- Keep Skin Ultra-Hydrated All The Time: By keeping skin well-hydrated, skin becomes supple, moist, and less prone to wrinkling. Other than drinking plenty of water, reach for over-the-counter topical creams and moisturizers. To obtain products with higher amounts of active ingredients like retinol, hyaluronic acid, and glycolic acid, consult with your dermatologist.
Aging may be a natural body process you cannot stop but, that does not mean aging is not something you cannot slow down. There are many ways by which you can help protect your skin and it’s never too late to start today.