April 22, 2021
Whether you’ve been battling wrinkles for years, just starting to notice a few crow’s feet, or trying to make a pre-emptive strike against aging, there are simple steps you can take to keep your skin healthier and younger looking.
Protect Your Skin from the Sun
The sun is the #1 cause of wrinkles. Ultraviolet (UV) light causes skin to age by breaking down the collagen and elastin that provide support and elasticity.
Tanned skin is damaged skin.
So, try to limit your time in the sun as much as possible. Use a broad spectrum sunscreen—and apply it generously—every day. Even in the winter and on cloudy days, 80 percent of the sun’s harmful rays can reach your skin. Be sure to choose a sunscreen that contains zinc (10-14%). It’s the most important ingredient in any sunscreen.
Don’t overlook the obvious. A simple moisturizer makes lines and creases far less noticeable. Try one with sunscreen for one-step benefits.
Include More Fruits and Veggies in Your Diet
The vitamins (particularly vitamin C), minerals and antioxidants in fruits and vegetables help skin look more radiant, and protect against some effects of photoaging, or premature skin aging from repeated exposure to UV radiation. Try to take advantage of fresh produce year-round.
Get Enough Sleep
Recent studies are finding an even greater connection between a good night’s sleep and the appearance of your skin. Sleep allows your body to repair damage from the day. Aim for 7-9 hours every night.
And while you’re catching your z’s, try doing so on your back to avoid sleep lines. Over the years, sleeping with your face in the pillow can wrinkle your skin. You may also want to consider a pillow designed to prevent wrinkling.
Wear proper eyewear both in and out of the sun.
Pricey sunglasses don't guarantee better protection. Look for a pair that says it blocks 99 or 100 percent of UVB and UVA rays.
Research shows that stress has a huge impact on all areas of your health, including skin health. Help avoid wrinkles by making stress relief part of your daily routine. Swimming, jogging, long baths, reading backyard games, yoga, walking your dog, meditation…whatever works for you. Consider putting down your phone and taking a break from social media.
In addition to all of its other harmful health effects, smoking has been shown to break down the skin’s collagen. That’s why smokers’ skin tends to be thinner with more lines, and deep grooves around the lips. If you smoke, try to quit. Many helpful resources are available at smokefree.gov.
Look Good Feel Good
Start making some positive changes today. When your skin looks good, you just naturally feel good. Learn more about skin care services at Lancaster General Health.