Of course aging is a normal occurrence of life, but premature aging can be a real problem for some. While there are many factors we might not be able to change such as hormonal imbalance, genetics and environmental conditions, there are some that we can. Our lifestyle choices can have a direct impact on how our skin ages.
Here we have compiled a list of some helpful tips to slow down the aging process.
ALWAYS protect your skin from the sun. You should never leave the house without first applying an SPF, we recommend an SPF of 30 or higher. While applying sunscreen is important, it's just as important to remember to reapply, as some sunscreen lotions only protect you from the sun for a certain amount of hours. Don't be shy when applying either, lather it on thick and don't forget to apply to the neck and chest area as well. Of course wearing a hat and UV protection sunglasses helps too!
Diet matters. A diet rich in fruit and vegetables is shown to prevent premature aging of the skin. While eating a diet high in simple carbs and sugars can do the opposite, causing the skin to lose its elasticity in turn making the skin look older.
Stay hydrated. Hydration is key for keeping skin looking healthy. The skin is our largest organ and needs water to fuel collagen production. Also avoiding access amounts of alcohol and caffeine is important as it dehydrates the skin, causing us to lose that plumpness that hydrated skin provides.
Don't stress the small stuff. We know, easier said than done, right! Stress has a physical effect on our bodies and long term stress leads to an inflammatory response that triggers faster aging. Make sure to take time for yourself, however that looks for you. Quiet activities, yoga practices, or just a short walk in nature can help relieve the stress our bodies so often hold onto.
Get your ZZZ's. Getting plenty of restful sleep is crucial to keeping us looking and feeling young. We need that time for our bodies to repair and reset itself. When we're asleep, the skin's blood flow increases, rebuilding its collagen which in turn reduces wrinkles. While on the other hand, sleep deprivation is associated with diminishing skin barrier and makes our cells age quicker.
Wash your face. We recommend cleansing the face morning and night, and after sweating. Gently washing the skin is important as it helps to remove dirt, oil, makeup, dead skin cells and environmental pollutants from the day. Not cleaning the skin can trap dead skin cells and bacteria in, leading to clogged pores and preventing the skin from its normal shedding and renewing process. When that happens our pores can appear larger and skin more dull, negatively affecting any youthful appearance we work so hard to achieve.
Apply a moisturizer. As our skin renews and repairs at night, applying a nightly moisturizer can slow the aging process by increasing the absorption of moisture locked into the face maintaining your skin's moisture barrier. A daily moisturizer is recommended as well as we want to prevent the skin from becoming too dry as well as keep it protected from absorbing environmental damage.
What are the signs of premature aging?
If you are suffering from sagging skin, dryness, patchiness, sun spots, itchy skin or wrinkles it might be time to start paying closer attention to your daily routine as you may be showing signs of premature aging. It's not too late to start prevention of future damage!