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Is naturally younger-looking, wrinkle-free skin really possible?

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There’s no question about it: Everyone wants to look younger.  You may yearn for the days when your skin was soft, smooth, and glowing.  But beyond your 20’s, can you really continue to have soft, smooth, wrinkle-free skin?  Well, according to most of the commercial cosmetic companies, it is possible as they promote the ‘reduction of fine lines and wrinkles’.

But is that so?  Is that the secret we’ve been looking for?

Short of inserting needles and chemicals into your skin, your skin will naturally wrinkle.  That is just something you cannot avoid.  However, you can reduce the speed at which your skin wrinkles by taking care of it throughout your life.  Below I’ve given a quick rundown, decade by decade of how better to look after your skin so you can delay the inevitable signs of ageing.

 

The 20s

You’ve waved farewell to the spots and blemishes of adolescence and entered a decade where your skin still retains its youthful glean.  However, looks can be deceiving even at this tender age.  Skin cell renewal falls by up to 28% and the shedding of dead cells is less efficient, thus leading to a less glowing complexion.

So what should you do? 

Well if you have taken up smoking, then you should seriously try to give it up.  Not only for the health of your lungs but also for the health of your skin.

If you’re becoming very figure-conscious and jumping from diet to diet, then, rather than yo-yo dieting, reduce the less healthy foods you’ve consumed throughout your teenage years which may now be more showing on your waistline and replace them with plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables and foods high in fibre.  And drink plenty of water to keep hydrated. 

Start protecting your skin in summer from the harmful UV rays of the sun by applying a cream containing UV filters.

If you’ve started wearing makeup, then acknowledge the importance of removing your makeup with a gentle cleanser at the end of each day.

And begin introducing a gentle weekly exfoliation into your skincare regime to help the skin shed those dead cells.

 

The 30s

By now your skin has been subjected to a number of years’ exposure to elements such as sun and pollution, all of which have had an effect on the fibres in your skin making your skin less taut and elastic.  The first fine character and definition lines start to appear in your face.

So what should you do?

As I personally noticed, at this stage in life you will probably find that you now need to add moisturiser into your daily routine – if you wore a lot of makeup in your 20s, you may have had to turn to moisturising cream a little earlier.  It now becomes even more important to eat a well-balanced diet which is abundant in Vitamins such as A, B, C and E as these help your skin repair itself and stay moist.  A party lifestyle may now need to be curbed a little more as alcohol may encourage blood vessels in your face to dilate which can lead to permanent red spider veins later in life.  Alcohol also sucks away essential nutrients from your skin.

Exfoliate your skin once or twice a week.

 

The 40s

The skin’s ability to produce natural sebum (oil) declines considerably.  In addition to your skin continuing to lose elasticity, it will become increasingly fragile.

So what should you do?

Natural Jojoba Oil (Simmondsia chinensis) has become a very popular oil in cosmetics as it closely resembles the skin’s sebum so try to find petroleum-free cosmetic products which contain Jojoba oil. 

Continue to exfoliate your skin but bear in mind that your skin is becoming more fragile so make sure you do not exfoliate too often and damage your skin – you may find that once a week is sufficient.

As deeper wrinkles start to take hold you may wish to try some gentle retinoid cream which incorporates a pure form of Vitamin A as such creams may help reduce fine lines and wrinkles.  However, if you choose to use a cream containing Vitamin A, please also make sure you carefully protect your skin from the sun as Vitamin A makes the skin more sensitive to the sun.

 

The 50s

The skin’s ability to produce sebum declines even further.  Your skin becomes, not only more fragile, but also, physically, more sensitive and more prone to bruising, and blood vessels more prone to damage.  For women, oestrogen levels will decline after menopause.  This means that the skin will start to lose its tone and may become dry and itchy.  Pigment cells may join together to create brown age spots.

So what should you do?

Continue with the skincare regime you established in your 40s, only take greater care with your skin as it becomes more fragile.  Keep alcohol to a minimum.  Ensure protection from the sun is kept to a maximum, especially if using ‘anti-ageing’ creams containing Vitamin A.

 

The guidelines above will not stop your skin getting older, but they are designed to keep your skin healthier for longer and the bonus will be reduced wear and tear on your skin.  No matter what the television or glossy magazine ads may profess, you cannot stop the aging process.

What is important to remember is that it is much more attractive to age naturally, healthily and, thus, gracefully.  A face which shows the characteristics of ageing can be every bit as beautiful as the flawless complexion of a 20 year old.  An older face is merely the portrait of a life well-lived and experienced.  Be proud of who you are, who you have been and who you have yet to become.

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