Is ageing skin inevitable?
Unless you’re Cher, then it kind of is. So, if you expect your skin is going to age, have you ever wondered why?
Or why it is that some of us seem to age better than others? What is their secret?
Is how you age just good luck and good genes?
More so, is there anything you can do to fight what appears to be a natural process and still find a way to age positively?
In this 4 part series about positive ageing: Is ageing positively even possible? Can we be happy in the skin we’re in? When the first signs of our skin ageing begin to appear, is there any way to feel positive about it? I’d even suggest, can we find acceptance in the passing of time and how it changes the appearance of our skin? Not so easy, but important for your mental wellbeing.
Read on and I’ll share with you what I know to be true.
The frustrating thing about your ageing skin.
It can be a frustrating thought. Just when you feel you’ve reached the most confident time of your life in your 40s and 50s, your skin begins to show signs of ageing. At first, it’s not too worrisome. Even so, these so-called signs of ageing leave you with lingering thoughts of inevitability, and despite how much you want to believe, there are nagging doubts about whether anything can make a difference to the changes you see in your skin.
Perhaps the key to positive ageing is education and confidently knowing how to make meaningful changes to your skincare regimen and lifestyle to manage, slow and even reverse the burgeoning signs of age. Not only can these actions give you healthy, ageless skin but a healthy perspective and a positive attitude towards how your skin looks and feels.
How and why the skin ages.
There are two ways we age.
Intrinsic ageing is the natural process our body goes through overtime. It’s the chronological ageing of our skin.
Extrinsic ageing, on the other hand, is caused by exposure to external factors such as the sun, pollutants and broad exposure to the environment.
Our skin is forever changing, and with up to 80% of all visible signs are caused by the sun, it’s worth thinking about what more you can do.
Sun Protection is essential but rarely foolproof.
As sun damage accounts for more than 80% of extrinsic ageing, it makes good sense to stay out of the sun and protect your skin from its damaging UV rays — not a new idea. The research and information are out there in abundance, and many will be happy to dispense advice. No matter what you know, and despite our best efforts, most of us will accumulate some degree of sun damage in our lives, leading to premature ageing. It’s almost impossible to avoid.
Not all sun protection is created equal.
Wearing sun protection is more complex than just applying an SPF. When choosing sun protection for everyday use, look for broad-spectrum over the SPF rating. And while the SPF rating is important, you want a broad-spectrum sunscreen that protects your skin from both the burning rays (UVB) as well as the longer rays that damage your dermal layer (UVA). Choose broad-spectrum sun protection containing ingredients to counteract free radical activation caused by the sun. Synergie Skin (pictured) offers broad-spectrum protection in their Uber Zinc with the additional support of the powerful antioxidants, vitamin E, Green Tea and Hydrolysed Tomato Skin. That’s a potent combination to protect your skin every day.
Enter the ageing enzymes.
As we age and as we accumulate more sun exposure, the antioxidant reserves in our skin become depleted, unable to fend off attack adequately. Free radicals are unstable and random molecules which trigger a cascade of events to disrupt the harmony of our cells.
Free radicals lead to an increase in age activating enzymes that gobble up the very molecules (collagen and elastin) that give our skin its integrity. In other words, and I hate to say it, it leads to the formation of wrinkles.
When your cells become sugar-coated?
Sometimes it’s not just the sun wreaking havoc; our lifestyle choices can play a massive part in how our skin ages. If we burn the candle at both ends, indulge in too many bad habits, and fail to exercise often enough, the cells in our body become sugar-coated – including the cells of our skin! It’s known as Glycation, a condition where glucose in our blood sticks to proteins.
It’s a normal process, but our bodies can become overloaded, and these sugar molecules attach to our collagen proteins, leading to dysfunctional skin and, again, the formation of wrinkles.
As sticky as this situation sounds, simple lifestyle changes and the inclusion of smart ingredients that communicate with the cells in your skin will go a long way in preventing the onslaught of Advanced Glycation End-Products (AGEs).
Once we reach our mid-40s hormonal disruptions can begin to contribute to changes in the appearance of the skin. The skin begins to lose some of its lustre, density and luminosity. Our skin becomes drier, brown spots and discolouration become more prominent and wrinkles more noticeable.
The time to act is now!
You might think this all sounds like a story without a happy ending. But the skin is a phenomenal organ. With a little help and commitment on your part, the natural repair mechanisms of the skin can slowly reverse the visible signs of damaged skin. Wrinkles, brown spots, discolouration, dryness and sensitivity are all consequences of these damaging biological activities.
You can take positive steps, regardless of how you feel about your skin today. Slowing down skin ageing at a biological level is empowering. Now that’s a confident feeling! You know to make the right choices. Gone is the stress (which also ages your skin), the doubt and worry all too often associated with ageing.
I don’t know about you, but having real solutions to slow down the way the skin ages is a pretty good feeling. You’re in control. You’re investing in your future skin.
Next week I’ll be sharing with you the most essential ingredients your skin needs to reach its potential both from the inside and out.
And by the way. If you want to look like Cher it will take a little more than skincare, but that’s another story for another time. In the meantime, get started and commit to a very good skincare routine.
You can achieve luminous, healthy skin at any age.
See you next time.