There are many things that cause our skin to age. Some of them we can't do anything about, others we can — and those are the techniques that will help your skin appear younger and smoother and give it the bloom of health.
1. Keep it clean.
“If you are not already exfoliating as part of your weekly routine, you definitely need to start,” explains Aly Mac, an esthetician with the skin care giant Kate Somerville. Removing the outermost layer of skin helps “unclog and minimize the appearance of your pores by removing any lingering dirt or grime, [and] helps to prepare your skin for any products you choose to put on after."
If your face is a little peach fuzzy, there are many gentle fragrance-free depilatory creams and easy to use devices that will remove hair relatively painlessly.
2. Add vitamins.
Moisturizers are great for keeping your skin hydrated, but using one with vitamin C has other benefits.
“Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that brightens dark spots, smooth fine lines and, importantly, scavenges free radicals from the environment, pollution and UV radiation,” explains Sara Hogan, M.D., a dermatologist at UCLA Medical Center, Santa Monica. “Over time, those free radicals can damage the skin, leading to premature signs of aging.”
3. Skip sugar.
Processed foods, alcohol and refined carbs cause inflammation in the body and can also lead to premature aging.
“The damage is seen in the form of fine lines, wrinkles and dull, sallow skin,” says dermatologist Dr. Joel Schlessinger.
For a vibrant visage, eat fish for its omega-3 fatty acids and lots of fresh fruits and veggies rich in vitamins A and C.
4. Give yourself a boost.
As your body ages, it loses collagen, the protein responsible for giving your face that youthful bounce. The good news is that “collagen peptides are a supplement that can help your body replace its lost collagen,” says Beth Czerwony, a registered dietitian at the Cleveland Clinic. “They help firm the skin and plump it up to keep you looking a bit younger.”
Collagen peptides are available in powder form at almost every drug store and bigger stores like Walmart and Target.
5. Screen out.
“A lifetime of sun exposure can cause wrinkles, age spots and other skin problems,” say experts at the Mayo Clinic.
To combat that, they recommend wearing protective clothing like tightly woven, long-sleeved shirts and a wide-brimmed hat; using sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15; and seeking shade between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., when the sun's rays are strongest. Use a mineral-based sunscreen even on cloudy days as UV rays are strong even when it's not sunny. Also, wear sunglasses to avoid squint lines from developing around your eyes.