While aging is inevitable, lifestyle choices can impact how quickly and severely skin ages.
Incorporating these simple steps into a daily routine can have a lasting impact on how you look and feel.
In the skin, lack of moisture can lead to early development of signs of aging, like wrinkles.
Drinking 8 glasses of water a day is an easy, low-cost step that can help skin stay plump and youthful-looking.
Additionally, staying hydrated can help the body flush out toxins that contribute to acne.
Staying hydrated has added benefits for the entire body, including improved digestion, regulating blood pressure, and overall organ health.
Flavored waters and seltzers can help make staying hydrated easy and fun.
Harmful UVA rays from the sun penetrate deeply into the skin, contributing to visible signs of aging, like wrinkles and sunspots.
UVB rays from the sun can cause mutations which can eventually develop into cancer.
Regular application of a sunscreen with an SPF value of at least 30, especially when spending time outdoors, can protect skin from sun damage contributing to early aging.
Different types of sunscreen work via different mechanisms, but have similar effects.
Chemical sunscreens are absorbed by the skin and work by changing UV rays into heat.
Physical or mineral sunscreens sit on top of the skin and reflect UVA and UVB rays.
Some sunscreens can even prevent potential damage from blue light, or light from electronic devices.
3. Hyaluronic Acid
Hyaluronic acid is naturally found in the skin and joints, where it helps the body retain water.
As we age, the amount of hyaluronic acid in the skin decreases, leading to less moisture and more visible signs of aging.
Applying a hyaluronic acid serum can help the skin retain more moisture by forming a protective, moisture-trapping layer.
Hyaluronic acid serums are available from many retailers at a low cost.
4. Vitamin C Derivatives
Vitamin C is a natural antioxidant that can help brighten existing dark spots and overall skin appearance and should be used in combination with sunscreen and not as a sunscreen replacement.
Vitamin C is growing in popularity as an added ingredient in anti-aging creams and serums, but is also available in simple powders and creams from many retailers.
5. Vitamin A Derivatives
As we age, skin cells stop growing as efficiently, leading to duller and older-looking skin.
Vitamin A derivatives help promote cell growth or ‘cell turnover’, leading to a more youthful appearance.
Derivatives of vitamin A, such as retinol, retinoic acid, and retinoids, have recently grown in popularity for their effects in promoting skin cell growth.
Increased cell growth makes skin more sensitive to sun damage, so vitamin A derivatives should always be used with sunscreen.
In the United States, one relatively strong vitamin A derivative, adapalene, is available over-the-counter under the brand name Differin.
Other, less-potent vitamin A derivatives are widely available and growing in popularity as ingredients in anti-aging creams and gels.
Even stronger vitamin A derivatives, such as tretinoin or Retin-A, are available by prescription from dermatologists.