Aging is inescapable. It causes the skin to become drier and thinner, leading to the appearance of fine wrinkles, fine lines, loss of firmness/ elasticity and increased pigmentation.
Aging also brings with it several types of health problems like Type 2 diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease.
The body may start undergoing premature aging at times. The body starts showing aging signs sooner than you might expect. This may be caused by several environmental factors including lifestyle and dietary factors.
However, you can prevent premature aging by taking care of your skin and overall health, and avoiding certain day-to-day habits.
Here are the top 10 habits that make your skin age faster.
It is no longer news that smoking harms your health in many ways. But smoking can also hasten the aging process of your skin.
The harmful chemicals in cigarette smoke starve your skin cells of oxygen, which can lead to pale, uneven coloring. It can cause the breakdown of collagen, giving your skin a saggy, loose skin. The whole process of smoking can cause deep wrinkles around the mouth.
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A research in 2007, published in the Journal of Dermatological Science reports that smoking tobacco leads to fast-tracked skin aging.
Also in 2013, a study published in Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery highlighted the facial changes caused by smoking between smoking and nonsmoking identical twins.
The study notes a 5-year difference in smoking history can cause visible differences in facial aging in twins.
Avoid smoking or even spending time with a smoker.
Drinking Excess Alcohol
Alcohol is a known natural diuretic. So excessive drinking can lead to dehydration. Dehydration drains the natural moisture from your skin, which inevitably makes you look older than your age.
Drinking alcohol in excess causes a weakening of healthy nutrients in your body, particularly vitamins A and C. These antioxidant vitamins are vital for maintaining vibrant and supple skin. Increased intake of alcohol is even associated with skin cancer.
READ ALSO: 11 Ways to Control Your Intake of Alcohol
A study in 2014 reports that higher current alcohol intake, higher lifetime alcohol intake and even a higher preference for white wine or liquor were linked with increased risk of melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer.
Drinking in moderation is the best. Men should limit themselves to 1 to 2 drinks a day, and women to 1 drink a day.
Too Little Sleep
Getting insufficient sleep, even for a night, can make you look and feel tired. It can cause dark circles and bags to appear under your eyes. Lack of sleep for days can affect the appearance of your skin.
Sleep deprivation can increase your cortisol level, which in turn can worsen inflammatory conditions of your skin. Secondly, it can cause poor collagen formation, which leads to aging of skin.
In a 2013 research by the University Hospitals Case Medical Center, physician-scientists discovered that sleep quality impacts skin function and aging.
READ ALSO: 6 Proven Tips for a Good Night’s Sleep
According to this study, poor sleep had increased signs of skin aging and slower recovery from several environmental stressors, such as interference of the skin barrier or UV radiation.
To enjoy beautiful and flawless skin, try to get between 7 and 9 hours of sleep per night. Also, it would be helpful too to use a satin pillow case to avoid fine lines and wrinkles.
Regular and lengthy exposure to sunrays is one of the worst things you can do for your skin. Exposing your skin to sun for long weaken you skin cells and blood vessels which causes a leathery-looking tanned skin. It even leads to pigmentation, reduced skin elasticity and a degradation of skin texture.
A study published in Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology in 2013, states that UV exposure appears to be responsible for 80 percent of visible facial aging signs.
Freckles can turn into brown sun spots, the skin takes on a dry, leathery appearance, and wrinkles and sagging increase.
Protect your skin by wear a hat, covering up with clothing and using sunscreen that is broad-spectrum, before going out on a sunny day.
Lack of Proper Skin Care
It is crucial to follow a proper skin-care routine to keep your skin healthy and immaculate. Different skin types need different types of treatment. It is therefore necessary to know your skin type to help learn how to maintain it.
Regardless of your skin type, you must wash your face twice a day as well as after exercise or whenever you’ve been sweating.
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It is important to remove your makeup before going to bed. The chemicals in makeup can block the skin pores and lead to aging signs. It is also important to use minimal makeup.
Also, exfoliate your skin gently once a week to get rid of dead skin cells. Scrubbing your skin roughly can irritate your skin and hasten skin aging.
You tend to frown a lot when you are stressed. Frowning is not good for your appearance. Excessive frowning over time causes the muscles in the face to conform to that movement. This leads to formation of wrinkles on the forehead, which make you look older.
Stress even plays a key role in instigating and driving events that cause skin aging at the cellular level. Stress contributes to breakdown of the collagen, damages DNA and promotes the release of pro-inflammatory mediators, which trigger premature aging signs.
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A study published in Inflammation Allergy and Drug Targets in 2014, highlights how the brain and skin communicate with each other, how the skin reacts to the stress by activating the endocrine and immune systems, and the negative impact of chronic stress on skin health.
Constant worry, anxiety, or stress takes a negative toll on your skin. Stress will never go away completely, but you can manage it and reduce the effects through meditation, gentle exercise and yoga.
Forgiveness is something most of us believe in, but we don’t always practice it. Holding resentments against any person or situation is bad for your health and general appearance. Unforgiveness adds more stress to your life, which boosts your level of the hormone cortisol. Cortisol leads to high blood pressure, weight gain, and high blood sugar.