Wrinkles...every woman's (and some men's) nightmare. I want to embrace natural ageing, and even though I sometimes joke about getting botox in my forehead, I would never do it. However, I am turning 22 this year myself, and I have noticed that my skin is changing.
Our skin consists of two layers, an outer layer epidermis and an 'inner' layer dermis. Wrinkles appear in dermis, the layer below epidermis. This layer is formed of collagen and other proteins and as we age, our bodies are producing less collagen. This protein is what makes our skin elastic and smooth, and less collagen (unfortunately) means saggier skin and wrinkles. But there are many different factors that impact this process, that mostly are affiliated with your lifestyle. These are for example sun damage, smoking, dehydration, poor nutrition, facial expressions (like laughing), pollution and toxins (great if you live in a city like London...), natural ageing and sleeping on your side (with cheeks pushed against the pillow).
So, what can one do to prevent wrinkles and ageing at an early age? Let me give you a few tips.
1. DON'T SMOKE
This should be an obvious one. We all know the danger of cigarettes and there are many reasons why you shouldn't smoke. One of them is that it causes wrinkles.
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2. STAY HYDRATED
"A healthy outside starts from the inside". So, stay hydrated by drinking water or tea (which is also full of antioxidants), and get rid of all the toxins in your body. If drinking loads of normal water bores you, try coconut water for example. Or cut some fruit and herbs in your water, to make moisturising your skin from within more fun. Find some inspiration here.
3. HAVE A BALANCED DIET
This follows the second point. All unstable molecules, like pollution and toxins, that damage our skin do not like antioxidants that we get from different vitamins, such as A, C & E and beta carotene (found from plants and fruits, like oranges and carrots). There are plenty of foods that include antioxidants, such as blueberries, spinach and beans. In a nutshell, eat (at least) your 1 of 5 a day!
Also, you should remember to eat loads of saturated fats. Yes, fat. Good saturated fats are part of a healthy lifestyle, and will help your skin stay young as well. These fats make your skin more elastic, as well as more resistant to the oxidative damage from the sun. Good saturated fats can be found in foods like avocados, eggs, fish and dark chocolate.
photo from here
4. FIND A GOOD SKINCARE ROUTINE
So, how to fix your skin from the outside? The easiest trick is to protect your skin from the sun. Use high SPF, preferably nontoxic, but also try to cover your skin whenever possible. I know it is nice to be tanned, but you will thank me later!
Get a simple skincare routine that you won't change too often. Changing your skincare regime often just messes up with your skin and will cause spots and dryness. SO, if you find that something works, don't change it. Here's a good skincare routine if you are in your 20s.
You don't have to waste your money on expensive moisturisers that claim to get rid of your wrinkles forever either. There are some natural products, such as coconut and organ oil that will help you to keep your skin young. Coconut oil is very moisturising, and it is said to reduce age spots, wrinkles and even cellulite. Besides from cooking, you can use it on your skin for example as a body moisturiser and makeup remover. Argan oil, less oily than coconut oil, is ideal to use on your face (if you find coconut oil to be too oily). Argan oil is still very moisturising, full of antioxidants and is natural anti-inflammatory. Find here some other oils that are good for your skin.
Remember to detox your skin with face masks every now and then. You can find good ones from different drug stores for less than £1, but you can also DIY at home. Here are some ideas for homemade face masks.
Dehydrated skin, puffy eyes, dark circles and mirthless complexion are some signs of a lack of sleep. A good night's sleep with enable your body to naturally enhance its ability to fight environmental and natural damage, which will show as a brighter, more youthful complexion. Sleep reduces your stress hormones (which causes thinner skin, stretch marks and discolouration), and it increases melatonin, the sleep hormone, which acts in the same way as antioxidants fighting age spots and fine lines. Sleep will also produce human growth hormone, which induces growth and cell reproduction. The collagen-producing cells are responsible for skin's elasticity and tightness. So, get some Zs!
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