Getting older brings about many physical and emotional changes. Wrinkles are one such physical change that is widely associated with aging.
Some people begin fighting wrinkling long before their first wrinkle even appears. A poll of 2,000 women conducted by DermStore found that around 30 percent of women under 35 regularly use anti-wrinkle products. The average millennial user starts at age 26 compared to the average currently 55-year-old woman, who began using wrinkle-reduction products at around age 47.
As skin ages, its natural tendency is to become less elastic. However, other factors also contribute to the formation of wrinkles. Understanding the main culprits behind wrinkles can help people combat them more effectively.
Exposure to UV light: The Mayo Clinic says that ultraviolet radiation speeds up the natural aging process and is the primary cause of early wrinkling. UV from the sun can break down the supportive connective tissue in the skin, which includes collagen and elastin fibers. Using sunscreen and staying out of the sun as much as possible can help.
Exposure to pollution: Pollution can cause free radical damage that contributes to wrinkling, advises Maral Skelsey, M.D., director of the Dermatologic Surgery Center of Washington. Other data indicates those who live in urban settings have more wrinkles and age spots than those who live in rural areas. Washing off skin contaminants from the air each day may be beneficial.
Smoking: The contaminants in cigarette smoke can damage the skin, promoting wrinkles, states the skincare company Nivea. Also, dragging on a cigarette purses the lips and can form deep wrinkles around this area of the face.
Poor diet and stress: Stress and eating unhealthy foods, such as a diet high in sugar, may contribute to premature aging of the skin. According to Kristina Goldenberg, M.D., board-certified dermatologist of Goldenberg Dermatology, after sugar is ingested it goes through a process called glycation, which involves binding to different proteins in the body. These proteins include collagen and elastin. By binding to these building blocks of the skin, sugar weakens collagen and elastin and will lead to an appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Stress can increase cortisol levels that affect the skin’s ability to stay hydrated and elastic.
Avoiding wrinkle triggers and following a dermatologist’s advice on skincare products and care can help people stave off wrinkles.
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