Getting older is an inevitable part of life, and we all know it. But getting older can look very different from person to person…quite literally. Why is it that some people look ten years younger or ten years older than people who are their same age?
Here’s the thing: wrinkles are complex. There are a lot of factors that contribute to them in both a positive and negative way. This means there are many steps you can take to keep wrinkles to a minimum, but it also means you might have habits right now that are causing wrinkles without you realizing it.
Let’s take a closer look at our common enemy, wrinkles, and get to know them a little better for the purpose of kicking them out of our lives as much as possible.
1.Wrinkles can be a warning sign for your health.
First of all, let’s get on the same page about this one: I’m not claiming that there are magical wrinkle arrangements on your skin that can diagnose you with specific illnesses, so please don’t start begging your local palm reader to look at your forehead. Wrinkles can, however, give you a clue about an important part of your health: your stress level.
Stress is a major contributor to health issues, and it also tends to make itself visible on your skin in the form of wrinkles. Forehead creases, in particular, tend to be deeper in people with high stress levels because we tend to furrow our brows when we’re stressed. If your wrinkles are telling you that you need to find some zen, your health will thank you for listening to them.
2.Technically, limiting facial expressions can limit your wrinkles.
Repeated facial expressions are a major contributor to wrinkles. In some cases, if you make the same facial expressions repeatedly over the years, the muscles that create these expressions may stay contracted the way they are when you’re purposely contracting them. This pinches the skin above them into a wrinkle. In fact, that’s how Botox works – by relaxing facial muscles to smooth out the wrinkles above them.
Because of this, it’s *technically* true that if you make a concerted effort not to smile, frown squint, or make other facial expressions whenever possible, you’re likely to have fewer wrinkles than your peers. This is one of those situations where you have to weigh the pros and cons, though. Is it really worth being on your guard 24/7? Frankly, it’s a lot easier to just start using a daily anti-aging cream instead.
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3.There are two kinds of aging: intrinsic and extrinsic aging.
Wrinkles are a combined result of both intrinsic and extrinsic aging. Intrinsic aging is the inevitable aging that naturally occurs over time, like your body producing less skin-firming collagen as you get older. Extrinsic aging, on the other hand, is accelerated aging that happens because of external factors like sun damage and pollution.
Truth be told, extrinsic aging has a much larger impact on aging than you probably realize. That’s why it’s so crucial to wear sunscreen on a daily basis.
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4.Some people are naturally less susceptible to wrinkles.
Thanks to that extrinsic aging, some people age more quickly than others because of habits like sun exposure, smoking, and so on. But it’s not all about lifestyle. Some people are naturally more prone to wrinkles than others.
Skin pigmentation plays a large role, for example. Sun exposure damages your skin when it reaches the deeper layers of your skin. Skin pigment blocks some of the sun’s radiation from reaching those deeper layers, and because of this, the darker your skin is, the less susceptible you are to wrinkles.
Your skin’s natural thickness can affect your wrinkles too. Wrinkles partially happen because your skin thins with age, and thinner skin is less able to withstand the movement of facial expressions and the effects of gravity. That’s why areas of your face with thin skin, like your eyelids, wrinkle more quickly than thicker areas. Some people naturally have thicker skin than others, and these people are less prone to wrinkles.
5.You can eat your way to having fewer wrinkles (to a degree).
There’s no miracle pill for preventing wrinkles, but there are some ways you can tweak your diet to keep looking younger. The most effective tip: eat more antioxidants.
Antioxidants are found in many whole foods, especially fruits and vegetables with rich, deep colors. These nutrients help your body fend off sun damage. You can supplement this by using skin care products with antioxidants too.
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Eating in a heart-healthy way can keep your skin looking youthful too. The healthier your heart is, the better your circulation will be. That circulation is essential to giving your skin the oxygen and nutrients it needs to stay healthy and bright.
Kicking Wrinkles to the Curb
Wrinkles are not a welcome addition to anyone’s aesthetic, and while they’re perfectly natural, there are plenty of ways you can keep them to a minimum. Start putting your new knowledge to work!