Although genetics mainly determine skin structure and texture, sun exposure is a major cause of wrinkles, especially for fair-skinned people. TNS
Saleha Irfan, Senior Sub-Editor/Reporter
With age comes wisdom and, of course, wrinkles.
While wrinkles may be a natural part of the ageing process, there are some things you can do to prevent them or reduce their appearance. For most, genetics play a big role in the development of wrinkles but some people are prone to them based on factors including sun exposure, smoking or an unbalanced diet.
While some people may see wrinkles as a sign of graceful ageing, others might not be too fond of them. If you fall into the latter category, worry not. There are quite a few steps you can follow to minimise your developing wrinkles.
Protect yourself from the sun
First and foremost, try and protect your skin from the sun by limiting the time you spend outside. If your job requires you to be out for most of the day, try and wear protective clothing like long-sleeved shirts, wide-brimmed hats and sunglasses. It is also important that you religiously use sunscreen when outdoors, even during winter.
The American Academy of Dermatology recommends using a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or more. Apply sunscreen generously, and reapply every two hours, or more often if you’re swimming or perspiring.
Also, when selecting skincare products, always choose the ones with built-in sunscreen. These products block both UVA and UVB rays.
One of the main reasons why wrinkles develop is because the skin loses moisture naturally as you age. So, to prevent premature skin ageing, make sure you use a moisturiser on dry skin. Though a moisturiser won’t prevent wrinkles altogether, it may temporarily ease tiny creases on the skin.
Even if you’ve smoked for years or smoked heavily, you can still improve your skin tone and texture and prevent future wrinkles by quitting smoking.
Eat a balanced diet
It is no wonder that people who eat clean and exercise look younger than those who don’t. Make sure to add plenty of fruits and vegetables to your diet as there is evidence that proves that certain vitamins help protect your skin.
HOW EFFECTIVE ARE ANTI-WRINKLE CREAMS?
I’m sure you have all seen aisles and aisles of beauty products lining the shelves at stores, all claiming to be anti-ageing. Many over-the-counter wrinkle creams and lotions claim to reduce wrinkles, or reverse them. But do these products actually work?
The effectiveness of anti-wrinkle creams depends in part on the active ingredient or ingredients. Here are some common ingredients to look out for that may result in some improvement in the appearance of wrinkles.
Retinol is a vitamin A compound, the first antioxidant to be widely used in non-prescription wrinkle creams. Retinol promises to tighten the skin thus reducing fine lines and wrinkles.
Another potent antioxidant, vitamin C serums can reduce premature ageing by protecting the skin from untimely wrinkles caused by sun exposure and damage. Make sure to store wrinkle creams containing vitamin C correctly. Before and in between use, store such creams away from direct air and sunlight.
Alpha hydroxy acids, beta hydroxy acids (salicylic acid) and poly hydroxy acids are exfoliants — substances that remove the upper layer of old, dead skin and stimulate the growth of smooth, evenly pigmented new skin.
This ingredient may help reduce fine wrinkles around the eyes and protect the skin from sun damage.
This ingredient has been used in products for wound healing, stretch marks and now wrinkles.
Green, black and oolong tea contain compounds with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Green tea extracts are the ones most commonly found in wrinkle creams.
Grape seed extract
In addition to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, grape seed extract promotes wound healing.
A strong antioxidant, this substance is related to vitamin B-3 (niacin). It helps reduce water loss in the skin and may improve skin elasticity.
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