According to a 2017 study, Australian women display more signs of ageing like facial lines and age skin structures, 20 years faster than American women. The study mostly measured photoaging, which is just one way to measure ageing skin.
The main reason why Australian women display such signs is partly because of the increased sun exposure. But there are many other reasons for wrinkles and fine lines.
Read on to see what causes wrinkles and how to help prevent wrinkles...
Common Causes of Wrinkles and Fine Lines
Of course, age is one of the main factors for wrinkle formation, as we age all our biological skin and body renewal processes slow. We experience a slowed healing response, slowed cellular genesis, causing a thinning dermal structure, a reduction in muscle tension and fat deposition. Those are just our biological factors - predetermined intrinsic changes - and they only account for 20-30% of ageing. Environmental factors as well as lifestyle are what create compounded ageing effects.
Environmental accumulates up to 80% of ageing (Ahmed, et al., 2020) causing exponential skin laxity and sagging the result, a less youthful appearance.
Let's take a look at some of the common causes of wrinkled and aged skin below....
Alcohol and Cigarettes
You might not want to hear this, especially since drinking a glass of wine (or more) a few nights a week is how you might relax from the stresses of the day. Drinking is also a primary way Australians socialise with each other.
Both alcohol and tobacco usage can dehydrate your skin and result in more wrinkles and fine lines. It also increases your sugar intake which leads to glycation ageing. Perhaps a topic for another article. This doesn't mean that you need to stop drinking alcohol completely. Moderation is always key here.
On the other hand, quitting smoking would be best for your skin in so many different ways. It's good for your heart, lungs, and brain health.
This is the big reason why Australian women (and men) struggle with wrinkled irregularly pigmented skin. Too many women have spent hours and hours baking under the sun in their youth without appropriate sun protection. And now they're suffering the consequences.
That's why it's so important to ensure you use an SPF30 or SPF50 sunscreen your face and any exposed areas. If you're using a chemical SPF, you must apply 20 minutes before going out in the sun, if wearing a physical SPF, no wait time is needed as it is immediately active and protective.
Regularly wearing sunglasses will add extra protection too as UV rays can damage your eyes also.
This is not as common, but it can be why you suffer from less youthful skin. When you lose weight a bit too fast, your skin isn't able to bounce back as quickly and this results in wrinkled skin in the areas of your body where you lost weight. It could be around your stomach, legs or arms.
Fat is a healthy element of our body when within reason, and fat deposition in your face is an integral structure in what contributes to a youthful complexion, thus the large market for fillers.
You are already aware of the importance of a nutritious diet packed with green leafy veggies, lean proteins, and superfoods. Not only is a nutritious diet necessary to boost your heart and brain health, but also to ensure that your skin looks supple and youthful. Healthy nutrients feeding new cell creation is key to longevity in skin.
Not Using Appropriate Products
One common mistake women make when choosing skincare products is thinking that one product is as good as the other. Just because it has the same ingredients or seems to do the same things doesn't mean they can be directly compared.
There's a reason why people pay a premium price for certain products - it's because they get formulated in a way that boosts skin health rapidly and effectively. For example, LaGaia UNEDITED's brand philosophy is scientifically formulated and pH balanced to deliver potent vitamins, botanical extracts, and other gems from nature.
If you don't have time to eat a nutritious diet or don't want to avoid alcohol or cigarettes, then you will have to find skincare products that can work overtime to boost your skin health. Of course, the ultimate combination is taking a bit from every column and consistently practicing a youth protecting lifestyle and regime.
Poor Quality Sleep
How many hours do you sleep at night? More importantly, what is the quality of your sleep? Do you toss and turn all night, or are you able to sleep through the night without any interruptions?
The quality of your sleep matters quite a bit in your skin health. Your skin is quite active at night, rejuvenating and healing itself while it doesn't have environmental factors like sun, pollution and other lifestyle factors to battle. If you don't give it the appropriate time and space to do this, then you are not going to achieve that youthful glow that you wish for. As well as wrinkles, your eyes will get puffy and dark without a good night's rest.
Where Are Wrinkles Most Commonly Found?
The first signs of aging are often at the outer corners of the eyes. These lines around the eyes are also known as laughter lines or crow's feet.
If you have a lot of stress in your life, you will also notice that your skin ages faster, and forehead wrinkles and other fine lines will become prominent throughout your face, neck, and around the mouth.
Other areas of the body prominently exposed to the sun, like our neck, décolletage and hands, are the two most prominent, then other area's like forearms upper back from sun exposure also tend to develop wrinkles and irregular pigmentation.
Most people only care about the wrinkles on their face though, because it's the part of our body that's always exposed. It's easier to hide the décolletage wrinkles or the wrinkles on our hands and forearms. It's significantly harder to do so with our faces.
The Best Ways to Treat Them and Prevent More
Prevention is better than the cure: this is especially true with fine lines and wrinkles. If you wish to avoid spending thousands of dollars in your older age on botox and other skin rejuvenation treatments, then prevention is the way to do it.
- Get at least 7-8 hours of good quality sleep every night
- SPF50 on your face and other exposed areas, no excuses
- Avoid or reduce tobacco and alcohol usage
- Reduce stress in your life and start a mindfulness practice
- Use anti-ageing products from LaGaia UNEDITED
- Eat a nutritious, well-balanced diet
- Avoid yo-yo dieting and extreme weight loss tactics
Start applying all these philosophies to your life bit by bit. You don't need to overhaul your life entirely, but start incorporating changes now, so you can hold on to your youthful skin for as long as possible.
How to Prevent Wrinkles - Build the Right Habits
You might know of someone who has flawless skin even though they are already in their late 50s, making you wonder what kind of sorcery they are up to.
It's not black magic; it's all about incorporating the proper habits into your daily lifestyle and using the right products to save your skin from your youthful indulgences.
Remember, that some of this is genetically predetermined, let's all start practicing a little more self love too.
Ahmed, A., Nikail, M., Zamakshshari, N., Abdullah, A. (2020) Natural anti-aging skincare: role and potential. Biogerontology 21:293-310. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10522-020-09865-z