Prevent wrinkles before they form with these tips
Wrinkles are a common part of life. The longer we live, the more memories we have to share, and the more our skin develops wrinkles as part of the natural aging process.
However, many people feel that an overabundance of wrinkles makes us look—and feel—older when we look in the mirror. Luckily, there are plenty of tried-and-true methods to reduce wrinkles or prevent them from popping up in the first place.
- Stay hydrated! A glass of water won't make wrinkles magically vanish, but a healthy commitment to hydration gives your skin the moisture it needs to hold its shape. Water boosts elasticity and keeps your skin healthy—and dehydrated skin is more prone to damage, distortion, and other signs of aging.
- Quit smoking. The reasons to quit smoking are practically infinite, and wrinkle reduction is one of them. Cigarette smoke ages the skin because it releases an enzyme that breaks down collagen and elastin, two components your skin needs to retain its elasticity.
- Stay out of the sun. Or when you can't, wear sunscreen. Sun damage is one of the leading causes of wrinkles. If you know you'll be spending the day outdoors, put on sunscreen and reapply every couple of hours. Your skin will thank you! And if you can't live without tanned skin, look into a good self tanner.
- Sleep tight! Bad sleep results in an excess of cortisol, a hormone that breaks down skin cells. Extra cortisol leads to extra internal skin damage, which makes your skin more prone to burns, wrinkles, and other visible signs of aging. So find a great mattress and pillow and get those suggested eight hours of Zzzzs.
- Stay up to date with vision testing. Squinting causes "crow's feet," the fine wrinkles at the corners of the eyes. You can minimize squinting by staying up to date with glasses prescriptions, wearing hats or sunglasses on sunny days, and keeping your face (and mind and body!) as relaxed as possible.
- Eat healthy. Soy, cocoa, and a diet rich in fruits and veggies are all linked to boosting skin quality, which in turn reduces your risk of wrinkles.
- Take care of your skin, but don't overdo it. A high-quality skincare routine is critical to keeping your skin healthy. That means cleansing, exfoliating, moisturizing, and using the right mix of products like toners, treatments, serums, and, yes, under-eye creams. However, over-washing your face can dry it out, damage the skin, and lead to more wrinkles than before. Commit to a healthy skincare routine, but don't go for too much of a good thing!
- Moisturize! Remember what we said about staying hydrated? Moisturizers act as an extra layer of protection between your skin and the outside world, but they also add some much-needed hydration to your skincare routine.
- Boost your diet with antioxidants. Antioxidants protect your skin from free radicals. Free radicals are atoms that are missing electrons, and they naturally try to grab an extra electron from anything they encounter. When free radicals come in contact with your skin, they try to snag that electron from your skin's atoms, resulting in damage that builds up over time. Antioxidants (like those found in berries, prunes, Granny Smith apples, and red kidney beans) reduce the number of free radicals that encounter your skin, so a diet rich with them will help boost your skin quality.
- Eat your vitamins! Vitamins C, D, and A all have a proven impact on your skin quality. A healthy, balanced diet that's low in red meats and junk food, but high in vitamin-rich foods, leafy greens, and antioxidants will give your skin extra defense.
- Reduce stress when you can. The 21st century is a stressful time to be alive—we all know that! However, committing to stress reduction wherever you can find it will improve your physical and mental health—and it's a great way to reduce wrinkles. We pick up wrinkles on our faces through actions like scowling, frowning, squinting, and making all kinds of "stress" faces. Trying out stress-reduction techniques like meditation, yoga, or regular massages can all have an impact on your overall health. Plus, a peaceful face develops less wrinkles!
- Try wrinkle-reduction treatments. Ingredients like alpha-hydroxy acids, retinoids, and Vitamin C all have a proven impact on reducing and preventing wrinkles. Look for topical under-eye creams especially for wrinkles and serums with "anti-aging" capabilities!
- Try a dermatologist treatment. Procedures like Botox injections, chemical peels, dermabrasion, and laser/light resurfacing can boost your skin's natural healing properties, restore elasticity, and leave your skin looking younger and wrinkle-free.
- Get wrinkles filled. If you've gone through all your options, you might consider getting stubborn wrinkles medically filled with collagen, hyaluronic acid, or another synthetic compound that boosts your skin's natural elasticity.
They may be one of the more pesky signs of aging, but wrinkles can be prevented or minimized with some healthy swaps, routine additions, and carefully-selected products.