Americans have an obsession with keeping their skin wrinkle-free, and there’s a multi-billion dollar cosmetics industry to support it. If you’re interested in keeping your skin healthy, but not interested in committing an entire paycheck to it, we’ve compiled a list of 14 tips that you can do yourself.
1. Keep out of the sun. Plenty of studies have found the connection between wrinkles and too much sun. UV light, and especially UVA, causes aging of the skin by breaking down the collagen and elastin which give it support. Wrinkles tend to appear on the face, neck and backs of the hands first as they are generally the areas most exposed to the sun. “Sun damage not only makes you look older, it is also the main cause of skin cancer, so there are plenty of good reasons for looking after your skin in the sun,” says Matt Gass from the British Association of Dermatologists.
2. Lather on the sunscreen. If you do go out in the sun always wear sunscreen even in the winter. “It is never too late to start wearing sunscreen every day,” says Hermione Lawson from the British Skin Foundation. “We know UV exposure is the main cause of skin agreeing, and remember, even on cloudy days up to 80 percent of the sun’s harmful UV rays can reach your skin.”
3. Stop smoking. Research shows that the skin of smokers ages more quickly than that of non-smokers. The skin tends to be thinner and has more furrows and lines. Smokers often get deep grooves around their lips. Smoking can break down the skin’s natural collagen which makes skin look less firm and more wrinkled.
4. Avoid drinking through a straw. When you’re pursing your lips a lot with a straw, you’re going to get those little lines around your lips. It’s not cute.
5. Be aware of how much you’re looking down at your mobile devices. You can use voice texting … holding your phone up and not looking down.
6. Antioxidants. They’re natural substances made up of vitamins and minerals found in plants. They can work to counter free radicals that damage DNA. Damaged skin cells may lead to wrinkles. You can eat and drink foods rich in antioxidants like blueberries, blackberries, kidney beans, and green tea. You can also use them on your skin. Many skin treatments contain a form of antioxidant. They include green tea extract, vitamin A, and vitamin C.
7. Try not to sleep on your side. Don’t skimp on sleep, and make sure you do it on your back. If you sleep on your side or front every night you can get sleep lines etched into your face which don’t disappear when you get up. Over time these lines can become a permanent facial fixture. Some people like to sleep on silk sheets and pillowcases to lessen the effect.
8. Limit frequent gum chewing. The repetitive motion of chewing, usually more on one side of the mouth, can cause wrinkles to be more pronounced on that side of the face.
9. Always wear your sunglasses, even when it’s cloudy. You’re always squinting when you’re in bright light. And that’s going to cause fine lines around your eyes. Any repetitive facial movement can overwork your facial muscles forming a groove which can turn into a wrinkle.
10. Try not to stretch your skin when applying or removing makeup. Just try to be gentle with your skin. Also we have a tendency to … raise our eyebrows and open our mouth and make all these funny faces. Try not to do that.
11. Limit consumption of refined sugar. It does nothing good. It breaks down your cells and causes inflammation.
12. Eat superfoods. There’s no single miracle food that makes us less wrinkly, but eating foods that are known to contain vitamins, minerals, and omega-3 fatty acids will all contribute to keeping your skin healthy and glowing. Vitamins A, C, E, riboflavin, niacin, pyridoxine, and selenium play a role in skin health.
13. Hydrate and reduce alcohol intake. Drink plenty of water and don’t overindulge in alcohol, which can dehydrate the skin. Water flushes out a ton of toxins, artificial ingredients, and other weird additives that could be clogging up your pores. Even the slightest bit of dehydration can cause fine lines, puffy eyes, and acne-ridden skin. At the very least, drink at least eight glasses of water a day to help rid your body of toxins and have healthier looking skin. Adding citrus like lemon helps facilitate the detox process, so drink up!
14. Moisturize. Even a simple moisturizer without any special ingredients will reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. The skin will look plumper and suppler rather than drier and lined. Try one with a built in sunscreen.