Can You Reverse Skin Ageing? The Scientists Weigh In
6 minutes read
The debate about how do we reverse the effects of skin ageing continues… Beauty Daily finds out what the experts have to say.
Ageing is not a condition we should be battling. It’s part of life and a complete privilege and also, let’s face it – inevitable. However, past skin offences (yes, we’re looking at you, Bahamas 1992) and the effects of self-inflicted sun damage and the like – can most definitely be worked on and dramatically improved. Products, treatments, and lifestyle choices can help support skin’s health from the inside out.
Let’s explore what should be in our pro-ageing arsenal- not to make you look younger, but a better, fresher version of you.
How do we age?
“As we age, it is natural for the face to lose some of its youthful fullness,” says the American Academy of Dermatologists (AAD). “Our genes largely control when these changes occur. The medical term for this is ‘intrinsic ageing’.” The AAD differentiates this type of ageing from ‘extrinsic ageing’ caused by environment and lifestyle choices.”
What causes skin ageing?
According to Charlotte McHale, Clarins Training Manager, “Sun exposure and smoking are the two most impactful external factors that contribute to premature skin ageing.”
Aside from its health implications, sun damage causes deep wrinkles, age spots and has been proven to break down collagen and skin elasticity. (What keeps skin looking young and bouncy).
“Using a daily SPF with a high factor (SPF30 or SPF50) will have a visible and significant impact on preventing premature ageing; but it won’t reverse the signs of ageing,” says McHale. She adds: “However, the earlier you start using SPF, obviously the younger you’ll look for longer.”
Smoking and pollution
If the sun didn’t cause your wrinkles, it’s likely that smoking and pollution played a huge part.
Loss of collagen and elastin
Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body. Healthline states, “It’s also what keeps the skin youthful by providing structure to the dermis, the skin’s thickest layer. Unfortunately, as we age, the body loses collagen and elastin- both help keep the skin firm and tight and give its youthfulness.”
The production of collagen starts to decline by the age of 25 for both men and women. After age 30, the collagen levels in your skin and body begin to drop by 1-2% each year according to a study.
It decreases even more in women after menopause. Collagen also decreases due to the effects of environmental aggressors and poor lifestyle choices such as ultraviolet rays, pollution, smoking, alcohol consumption and poor nutrition.
Sagging skin “is most prevalent on the face and neck,” says Anne Chapas, clinical instructor of dermatology at New York’s Mount Sinai Medical Centre. Adding, “Diet, weight fluctuations and lifestyle factors are a major cause.”
Current anti-ageing technology
Dive into a decent anti-ageing read. Scientist Andrew Steele’s book ‘Ageless‘ – is eye-opening and offers practical ways to help slow down the process.
It looks into how scientists have been studying every aspect of the body. From DNA, mitochondria, stem cells, the immune system, even up to the ‘ageing genes’ that have helped animals enjoy a tenfold increase in lifespan.
It could lead, in the not too distant future, to treatments that might slow down our own bodies’ decline. But, until then – it’s back to simply taking good care of oneself.
How to reverse skin ageing naturally
Although we don’t have a time machine, there are ways to reverse some skin ageing problems.
Unless you want to resort to surgery, a good quality skincare regimen is one of the best ways to start. Scientifically proven ingredients, delivery systems, efficacy testing, and of course, honest genuine reviews are some of the best ways to find something to support you and your skin.
You can also employ some clever colour correcting. The new Nutri-Lumière Revive is a lilac-toned cream, full of kaki extract that enhances skin by counteracting sallowness, yellowness and dullness – brightening and re-igniting the complexion with un-surpassed glow.
The natural ingredients to have on your radar:
- Harungana: nicknamed the the ‘elixir of youth‘ as it encourages skin renewal, regeneration and is similar to Vitamin A derivative Retinol. It is proven to promote collagen synthesis for firmer skin, restoring skin density and promoting an even-looking, radiant complexion.
Sourced in Madagascar, this organic plant extract is as powerful as retinol but a more natural, gentler alternative. It is found in the Super Restorative Range.
- Leaf of Life: is a super plant that thrives in dry climates. Sourced in Madagascar, this succulent absorbs moisture, retaining water in the core of its leaves. A similar trait of hyaluronic acid (skin’s sponge molecule) is lauded for its ability to absorb up to 1,000 times its weight in water. It can revive even the most dehydrated skin. The Leaf of Life extract solves dry skin issues which prevent the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and fosters soft and hydrated skin. This plant extract is found in the Hydra-Essential Range.
- Turmeric Extract: is a powerhouse antioxidant. It is known for its exceptional anti-ageing properties and helps fight significant signs of skin ageing. It is the hero ingredient in Double Serum and Double Serum Eye.
How to reverse skin ageing with a healthy lifestyle
- Use SPF daily on your face, 365 days a year.
- Stop smoking.
- Drink plenty of liquids to keep your skin and body hydrated.
- Eat lots of fresh fruit and vegetables. Scientists believe eating vitamin-rich food helps us look younger. An interesting Dutch study showed that women’s wrinkles might well be related to what they eat. Foods rich in anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants can help improve the skin’s elasticity and slow the signs of ageing; try avocado, pomegranate, green tea, olive oil, flax seeds and salmon.
- Eight hours sleep every night. Adding in a nourishing night cream will also do wonders.
- Exercise is vital as it increases mood, cognitive function and helps with our general wellbeing – which registers on your face.
- Taking natural supplements may help with the skin ageing process. There are several collagen products available on the market which supplement our skins’ loss of collagen as we age. Vitamin C is another powerhouse that repairs damaged skin cells and also assists in collagen production.
- Try Together Health, Beautiful Hair, Skin and Nail Daily, it’s a combination of natural, glow-giving nutrients to enrich your hair, skin and nails complete with vitamins, minerals, live enzymes, phytonutrients and amino acids.
Reversing skin ageing – try these DIY massage techniques:
Facial exercises: These include facial yoga: to improve the skin’s elasticity and help reverse the signs of ageing. Studies have shown facial exercises to be extremely effective in lifting the epidermis.
Using a jade roller: This Chinese beauty tool has been used for centuries to stimulate circulation, tighten facial skin, reduce puffiness and improve circulation.
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