anti aging anti wrinkle

Understanding Skin Aging: Its Causes, Prevention And Skincare


Our skin ages as we grow old. Skin aging is often characterized by wrinkles, fine lines, age spots, dryness, etc. It also becomes thinner and loses fat which makes it less plump and smooth. The process of aging isn’t solely based on genetics.

Several factors are responsible for premature skin aging. So it is important to keep a check on these factors in order to protect the skin.

People with aging skin often have some common questions like what is skin aging? What are its causes, prevention or treatment? What age does skin start to age? How can I stop my skin from aging? How to stop the skin from thinning? How can I increase collagen in my skin?

If you are the one with such questions too, do not worry. All your queries are answered below so keep reading on.

What Is Skin Aging?

As we grow older the condition of our skin changes. That’s how people can guess the age of a person from the texture of their skin. Skin aging is a natural process which means that the most voluminous organ of the body undergoes changes as we age.

Generally, the first signs of aging skin begin to be visible at the age of 25 years. But different people experience aging of the skin at different times as a number of factors determine the skin aging. It is marked by signs of wrinkles, fine lines, sagginess of the skin. 

Though it is natural for skin to age, in the modern era premature aging is a cause of concern. Our skin is aging faster than it actually should. It is due to a number of factors like pollution, sun, etc, which are discussed further in this write-up.

What Causes Skin Aging:

The factors that cause the skin to age are characterized in two categories as- Extrinsic and Intrinsic. Only 10% of aging is intrinsic, meaning it happens naturally as we get older. Extrinsic aging is caused by environmental and lifestyle factors you may come in contact with every day.

Intrinsic causes include:

Hormonal Influences:

Reduced messaging between cells due to a decrease in levels of estrogen.

Poorer Blood Supply

This affects the supply of oxygen and nutrients to the skin’s surface.

Genetics

The genetic makeup of our body also decides how quickly signs of aging appear.

Extrinsic causes include:

Sun

  • Most of the premature aging is due to sun damage.
  • While Vitamin D is very beneficial to your health, too much time spent in the sun leads to photo-aging. 
  • UV rays damage skin cells, decreasing their productivity. 
  • Over a period of time, your skin can’t recover from the negative side effects, resulting in age spots, wrinkles, and sagging.

Smoking:

  • People with a habit of smoking tend to have more wrinkles than nonsmokers of the same age, complexion, and sun exposure.
  • Though the reason is unclear, it is assumed that smoking interferes with normal blood flow in the skin.
  • It is one of the most controllable extrinsic factors, as it causes chemical changes in the body. 
  • This results in an acceleration in the aging process and makes it crucial to avoid. 

Pollution:

  • Pollution in the environment can also speed up the aging process.
  • Your skin is attacked by free radicals from smog, exhaust, and smoke, breaking down healthy skin cells.

Technology:

  • Our digital devices also release free radicals due to their fluorescent lighting.
  • This makes it imperative to protect your skin by incorporating sun protection and antioxidants, even when not in direct sunlight. 

Gravity:

  • Yes, you heard it right. Gravity also has an effect on your skin.
  • As the skin loses its elasticity, gravity causes drooping of the skin.
  • It makes the eyebrows and eyelids to sag, looseness, and fullness under the cheeks and jaw (double chin), and lengthening of the ear lobes.

Obesity:

  • Increased weight causes the skin to stretch. 

Daily Facial Movements: 

  • Due to the loss of elasticity in the skin, lines on the face become more visible.
  • It usually starts appearing in the 30s or 40s.
  • Fine lines may appear on the forehead horizontally, on the nose vertically, on cheeks and around the mouth as small curves. 

Sleeping Position:

  • Sleep creases are commonly seen on the side of the forehead, starting above the eyebrows to the hairline near the temples, as well as on the middle of the cheeks.
  • They result from the way the head is positioned on the pillow and may become more visible after the skin starts losing its elasticity.

Dry And Itchy Skin: 

  • The dryness of the skin becomes common in later life. 
  • With age, the loss of sweat and oil glands may also worsen dry skin. 
  • Dry skin itches because it is irritated easily. If your skin is very dry and itchy, see a doctor because this condition can affect your sleep, cause irritability, or be a symptom of a disease.

Stress:

  • Stress in general hampers the overall well being of a person.
  • The increased amount of stress impacts skin negatively.

Signs Of Aging Skin: 

skin aging

 

  • Slack: With aging, skin tends to lose its elastic tissue (elastin and collagen). This causes the skin to become slack and hang loosely.
  • Transparent: This is caused by the thinning of the epidermis (surface layer of the skin) and dermis (deeper layer of the skin).
  • Fragile: Increased skin fragility is caused by flattening of the area where the epidermis and dermis (layer of skin under the epidermis) come together.
  • More easily bruised. This is caused by thinner blood vessel walls.
  • More prone to developing skin lesions, such as non-cancerous (benign) tumors.
  • Loss of facial volume resulting in sagging skin, flattening of the cheeks, etc.
  • Rough, dry, and itchy.
  • Wrinkles.

How To Reverse Aging Skin?

  • Protect your skin from the sun every day. 
  • Apply self-tanner rather than get a tan.
  • If you smoke, stop. Smoking greatly speeds up how quickly skin ages.
  • Avoid repetitive facial expressions.
  • Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet.
  • Drink less alcohol. Alcohol is rough on the skin.
  • Exercise most days of the week.
  • Cleanse your skin gently. Scrubbing your skin clean can irritate your skin. 
  • Make it a routine to wash your face twice a day and after sweating heavily.
  • Applying a facial moisturizer every day is a must. 
  • Stop using skincare products that sting or burn.

Skin Aging Prevention:

Once you become aware of what causes premature aging, you can take preventative measures to minimize the effects. Your lifestyle choices can largely prevent the signs of extrinsic aging, so it’s best to be aware of what you’re putting in your body and what you’re exposing your skin to on a daily basis.

  • Lifestyle: Regular exercise ensures a healthy body. Light exercise like jogging, stretching helps maintain proper blood circulation. This, in turn, helps with slowing down skin aging and ensures tight skin.
  • Nutrition: A healthy diet, rich in fruits and vegetables, will ensure an intake of antioxidants that can help to limit the damaging effects of free radicals on the skin. A variety of nutritious foods should be included in the diet which are beneficial to the skin. These include carrots, apricots, oranges, and yellow fruit and vegetables, blueberries, leafy green vegetables, bell peppers, tomatoes, beans and other pulses, oily fish (such as salmon) and nuts.
  • Quit Smoking: Smoking accelerates aging remarkably, reducing elasticity and causing the dullness. Quitting smoking will help to improve the skin’s appearance.
  • Reduce Alcohol Intake: Consumption of alcohol in larger amounts affects the skin’s appearance. It causes the skin to age faster. So limit your alcohol intake to have younger-looking skin.
  • Good sleep: A good night’s sleep can help as part of a holistic approach to skin aging. Prevent skin aging with a good night’s sleep.
  • Eating more of the right foods should be part of a holistic approach to skincare. Supports skin by eating healthily.

Care For Aging Skin

Care for aging skin

A good skincare routine is an essential part of a holistic approach to treating all signs of aging: wrinkles, loss of volume, loss of elasticity and related conditions such as age-induced dryness or sensitive aging skin.

If your skin is healthy, good care will ensure it stays in condition. If not, a consistent routine can help to improve it. 

  • Cleanse: To remove make-up, dirt, and chemicals from the skin proper cleansing is a must. This is vital, as chemicals on the surface as a result of pollution can trigger oxidative stress. Try Pre-wash Micro Cleansing Oil or Amino Acid Micro Emulsion Cleanser  from Recherche.
  • Care: Care: This is essential to replenish and hydrate skin with products that address your primary aging concern. Choose Rejuvenating and Hydrating Mask.
  • Protect: Protecting skin from the sun’s rays, even on cloudy days, is the most important step in preventing premature skin aging. Choose a day cream that includes an SPF and protects your skin from the sun or, for more intense exposure, use a dedicated sun protection product. Give a try to DNA ReCode Serum from Recherche.
  • Creams with color pigments can also be used to even the skin tone and correct your complexion. Choose a CC Cream that evens skin tone for a radiant complexion. Facial ReSculpt contour cream from Recherche is a good anti-aging cream to try out.
  • When choosing skin care products look for brands that are of cosmeceutical grade rather than cosmetic grade like Recherche. Give a try to Recherche’s Anti-Aging range for better results.

Bottom Line

Skin aging is a natural phenomena which cannot be eliminated but can be kept in check. Incorporating small changes in our daily lives can have positive impacts on our skin.

If the signs of aging skin begin to bother you too much than seeing a dermatologist can be helpful. As these days advanced treatments are also available to help fight with aging skin.

WRITTEN BY

Coreenna Ong

Head of Research

Coreenna Ong has more than 20 years of extensive experiences in research and development, conceptualization, formulation, production process development and bring to market skincare products in the beauty industry. Ms Ong is currently the Director, Research and Development at Recherché skincare.

Recherché is a Singapore cosmeceutical skincare brand, with its products clean, green, plant-based and specially catered for Asian skin. It is also the pioneer in developing edible skincare actives to specifically address skin concerns.

Within just 2 years, Ms Ong’s research has led Recherché to win several awards and accolades for its products.

Ms Ong’s research focuses on harnessing the latest formulation technologies, knowledge and techniques to distil and extract nature's essence, and then apply them synergistically for maximum results.

She has authored 2 best-selling Beauty and Wellness books with Marshall Cavendish. The books had multiple runs and remained popular and in print circulation for several years. They are currently available in the Singapore National Library collection.

Ms Ong was also a Beauty columnist for Lianhe Zaobao, Singapore's largest Chinese-language newspaper publication, with huge regional presence. As its weekly expert contributor, she shared the latest research and technologies from the Beauty industry, and addressed the many skincare issues and concerns of the newspaper's readers regionally, including offering beauty tips, quick fixes and insider knowledge.

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