After 25, the skin shows signs of aging. Even though skin aging is an inevitable biological process, people always try to find new methods and products to fight against and slow down skin aging. However, skin aging is not only a result of time; many reasons cause aging problems that anyone can face, even when we are young. This article will explain in detail and show some tips about the best anti-aging skin care routine.
What is skin aging?
With aging, the skin loses its elasticity and ability to return to its normal form. Skin aging is part of the natural human aging process. Skin aging can be understood as weakening your skin’s function, leading to sagging, less elastic skin conditions, large pores, and brown spots. While the signs of aging on other body parts are difficult to spot, the skin is the first place that shows the most aging signs.
What Causes Skin Aging?
Not only by age, but skin aging of a person can depend on internal factors like genetics, hormones, etc., and external factors like sunlight, pollution, chemicals, toxins, etc.
The loss of collagen & elastin
The reason for the appearance of signs of skin aging can include a significant loss of elastin and collagen over time. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body, found in bones, joints, tendons, and skin. In the skin, collagen makes up 70% of the skin structure and acts as a “glue” to stick, connecting the subcutaneous tissues to help the skin stay firm.
Like collagen, elastin is a protein that plays an important role in the skin, connecting cells. However, if collagen is likened to a supporting framework that makes the skin stretch and firm, elastin is like a rubber band that helps the skin stay elastic.
The main cause of the decline of these two proteins is age. At 25, the skin loses 1% of collagen every year, increasing gradually over time; until 50, the skin has lost up to 45% of collagen. In addition, collagen and elastin can also be damaged by other external factors such as sunlight and pollution. Besides these two proteins, over time, we also lose the amount of fat underneath the skin layers, causing the outermost layer of skin to thin and sag, forming wrinkles, and causing skin aging to become more serious.
Exposure to sunlight ages the skin
Nothing ages skin as much as UV radiation from the sun; UV exposure is responsible for 80% of the signs of aging on the face. Besides premature wrinkles, the sun also causes papules and vascular disorders. These rays also damage and break down the skin’s elastin over time, leading to premature sagging.
Exposure to sunlight usually harms the epidermis – the outermost layer of the skin, leading to a myriad of other harmful effects like melasma, freckles, dark spots, etc.
A little-known cause is that skin aging is also affected by genetic factors. You might inherit this trait if your parents had wrinkles early. However, we can completely age our skin less or more than our parents, depending on the level of sun exposure, diet, skincare process, and daily habits.
Besides the sun, skin exposure to other external free radicals can degrade collagen and elastin fibers, including toxins, pollutants, and even the food you are consuming.
Lack of skin care or improper care
Do not take care of your skin, or the wrong skincare will bring many problems like acne, melasma, freckles, lack of moisture, etc. A suitable skincare routine helps the skin absorb nutrients well, reducing skin problems and increasing collagen production. However, extreme skincare or wrong skincare can also harm your skin.
Excessive weight change
Weight gain or loss inadvertently affects the rate of skin aging. A study has found that gaining weight over a prolonged period can destroy the skin’s collagen and elastin, causing the skin to lose elasticity and sag. This even affects the skin’s ability to recover after weight loss. It is most common in women during pregnancy and after giving birth. After losing weight, your skin has lost a lot of collagen and elastin in the previous weight gain, plus a sharp reduction in the subcutaneous fat layer makes the skin loose and elastic.
Consuming too much sugar, wine/beer, soda, or even coffee, condolences, you are on your way to aging. All these foods contain substances or active ingredients that change the bonds in the body, directly affecting the skin’s elasticity—smoking a cigarette damages the lungs and many other parts of the body. Research shows that smoking contributes to wrinkles and aging.
Signs of aging skin
You will notice that the skin has different signs of aging at different ages.
- From 25 to 30, you will see obvious signs of aging. Although the skin is still tight, some small wrinkles begin forming in the corners of the eyes, mouth, and smile lines.
- From 30 – 40, you will begin to feel the most obvious changes in the skin; at this time, the aging process has taken place strongly. The skin’s natural life cycle begins to slow down, which means the appearance of brown spots, wrinkles, sagging, and reduced collagen production begins to form. Hormonal changes can also cause acne in adulthood, as in teens.
- As the same aging process in your 40s continues into your 50s, dermatologists warn that menopause can worsen these signs. Changes in estrogen levels can make skin drier. The loss of collagen can lead to sagging skin along the jawline and around the eyes.
- At 60, the most noticeable change is that your skin will be thinner. Daily skin care can fight wrinkles and improve firmness, but not enough to combat facial sagging.
However, you do not need to worry too much because now there are many ways that you can apply to reduce the degree of skin aging or prevent it from an early age.
Best anti aging skin care routine you should try from now
The good news is that while you can’t influence internal factors (like genetics), or external factors (sunlight, smog, pollution, etc.), there are things you can completely control to reverse aging. Here are a few ways to help you prevent external agents and restore your aging skin.
Use sunscreen daily
Even if you can’t see it, UV rays from the sun still destroy the good proteins in the skin, leaving behind a tan, rough, and sagging skin over time. The single most important anti-aging thing you can do for your skin daily is wear high-SPF sunscreen—zinc oxide or titanium oxide to protect you from the sun’s harmful rays. SPF (short for Sun Protection Factor) is the sun protection index, which helps protect your skin from the sun’s radiation.
The sun emits two types of radiation: UVA rays and UVB rays. UVA rays contribute to skin aging signs such as wrinkles and sagging. UVB rays, although shorter, do not penetrate glass but are known to cause skin cancer and often cause sunburn.
SPF works by extending the skin’s natural protection against the sun’s rays. For example, SPF 50 will protect skin 50 times more than without sunscreen.
In general, you should use sunscreen with an SPF of 30 when you don’t have to go out much and must use sunscreen with an SPF of at least 50 when participating in outdoor activities. In addition, you should choose a sunscreen labeled “UVA/UVB protection” or “broad spectrum,” a broad-spectrum sunscreen that can protect against the harmful effects of both UVA and UVB rays. And don’t forget that the average sunscreen only works for 2 hours; if you are active outdoors continuously, don’t forget to reapply sunscreen.
Add anti-aging ingredients to your anti aging skin care routine
There are many anti-aging skincare products, but each has a completely different effect. When buying anti-aging products, read through the ingredients to see if they have the following substances and understand the function of what you apply to your face. Let’s find out some popular ingredients used for anti-aging recently:
- Alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs): AHAs can help your skin look fresher and more youthful by reducing the effects of the sun, exfoliating the skin’s exterior, and helping skin retain moisture. Glycolic Acid is a common type of AHA.
- Ammonium lactate (Ammonium lactate): If your skin is dry and flaky, ammonium lactate can help retain moisture and remove dead skin cells.
- Antioxidants commonly found in vitamins E, C, and coenzyme Q10, can restore aging skin and may even help protect it from damage from exposure to the sun and the effects of free radicals. These molecules irritate the skin and cause it to become inflamed.
- Beta hydroxy acids (BHA): Similar to AHAs, BHAs help exfoliate your skin. They are intended to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles. In product ingredients lists, BHAs may be listed as salicylic Acid, salicylate, sodium salicylate, willow extract, beta-hydroxybutyric Acid, tropic Acid, or trethocanic Acid.
- Lactic Acid, a type of AHA derived from milk, is often added to moisturizer products to support removing dead skin cells and increase your skin’s moisture.
- Peptides: Peptides are protein ingredients that are sometimes added to anti-aging products because they can increase collagen in your skin, making it appear thicker.
- Retinoic Acid is the gold ingredient in anti-aging in the skin today—a specialized form of vitamin A. Applying retinoic Acid daily for several months can improve your skin’s texture and tone, and your collagen production will increase.
- Urea-a common ingredient in moisturizers, urea increases the skin’s ability to hold water and reduces the scaly appearance of dry skin.
- Vitamin C: promotes collagen growth, fights wrinkles, and even clears up damage from UV rays.
In general, anti-aging skin care products contain more than one of these ingredients. Remember that some of these ingredients can cause skin irritation, so use caution when using anti-aging products for sensitive skin.
Don’t forget the eyes area
The skin around your eyes is the place that early and easily shows the signs of aging on the face, so don’t ignore this important part of your skincare routine. Because of its thin and sensitive structure, you should use a special product for eye skin, combined with a gentle massage of the eye area to help cosmetics easily penetrate.
Wash your face gently
Washing your face is important to remove any skin care products or makeup you’ve applied during the day and your skin’s natural oils, pollutants, and bacteria buildup. However, the habit of vigorously rubbing when washing your face with the belief that it will help remove dirt on the skin will inadvertently damage your skin, pulling wrinkles to become more obvious. Or sometimes, using the wrong face wash also accidentally causes skin irritation.
Use a gentle cleanser to protect your skin and keep it resistant to dehydration. When choosing a cleanser, keep the pH in mind. If the pH in the cleanser is too high, your skin can become irritated and even drier; choose a cleanser with a low pH in the morning and a different cleanser that will cleanse your skin but still mild in the evening. You also don’t need fancy cleansers with active ingredients because cleansers don’t stay on your skin for too long.
Keep your skin hydrated
One of the big reasons for wrinkles is a lack of moisture in the skin, but luckily you can easily fix it by using a moisturizer. However, do not forget to distinguish between hydrated and moisturizing:
- Hydrators draw water from the external or internal environment of the body to provide moisture to the skin
- Moisturizing creates a film on the skin, preventing water from evaporating, escaping, and locking moisture on the surface, and keeping water active only on the skin’s surface.
Usually, moisturizer products have both of these benefits, but your skin does not always need both. For example, if you have naturally dry skin year-round and tend to peel, it’s not weather-induced dehydration; your skin is having trouble retaining moisture. So you will need a moisturizer to create a protective film on the surface to lock in moisture.
Drink enough water
Drinking enough water helps you stay active and improves your energy levels and brain function. It has also been shown to help keep skin healthier and reduce signs of aging. Drinking water is also a method to moisturize the skin and the whole body. On average, every day, do not forget to provide at least 2l – 2.5l of water for the body.
Physical or chemical exfoliation
As you age, your skin slows down. Dead skin cells aren’t replaced by new ones as quickly, which means your skin starts to look dull, uneven, and more prone to showing signs of aging. Exfoliating is a great way to help remove dead skin cells from your skin.
There are two main types of exfoliants: physical and chemical. It is best to avoid physical exfoliants with large particles, as it makes your skin more prone to sagging; even if you are not careful, you can cause skin irritation.
Chemical exfoliation uses acids to break the bonds between skin cells, removing the top layer of dead skin. Chemical exfoliation helps to fade uneven pigmentation, hydrate the skin, unclog pores and reduce signs of skin aging.
There are many chemical exfoliants; the most commonly used are AHAs, BHAs, and Retinol. However, when using chemical exfoliants, you should be aware of the concentration of acids. You can do it yourself at home with a mild concentration, but if the concentration is too strong, it is considered another form of peel. For the skin of the body, give priority to using a physical exfoliation product; because the body skin structure is not as thin as the face skin, you can use an exfoliating scrub with particles to help remove dirt and soften skin.
Use anti-aging skincare essential oils
If you are looking for more natural skin aging treatments, you may consider using essential oils. Essential oils can’t eliminate wrinkles, but they can help minimize them. Other benefits of essential oils in an anti-aging skincare routine include:
- Boost collagen
- Even skin tone
- Reduce inflammation
- Promotes skin cell turnover
- Protect your skin from environmental damage
To use essential oils in anti-aging, follow these steps:
Step 1: Choose an essential oil that contains antioxidants:
- Rosemary Essential Oil: This herb is known for its high antibacterial and antioxidant properties. Rosemary can also help reduce swelling/inflammation, skin aging, and stress relief.
- Lemon Essential Oil: Lemon is a strong antioxidant and contains a lot of vitamin C.
Step 2: Choose an essential oil with emollient and moisturizing properties
- Rose essential oil has antioxidant and antibacterial properties; it can relieve pain and anxiety while softening the skin.
- Sandalwood Essential Oil has moisturizing properties due to its natural emollients, which help retain water in your skin. They can also reduce the appearance of wrinkles.
- Geranium Oil has been studied for its ability to balance moisture and regenerate skin cells in people with acne.
- Frankincense oil can help reduce or prevent the appearance of brown spots on the skin. This can improve skin tone while reducing the appearance of wrinkles.
- Lavender Essential Oil supports reducing stress and better sleep and fight against anti-aging skin. The lavender essential oil contains antioxidants; it also can soothe the skin and reduce dullness.
Step 3: Choose coconut oil as an introduction, and bring the essential oil mixture to penetrate deep into the skin. Mix the essential oils in steps one and step 2 together, then use pure coconut oil as a carrier. Apply the above essential oil mixture to the skin 1-2 times per day as an anti-aging serum.
Avoid foods that accelerate aging
Many foods are very common in daily meals but unintentionally accelerate your aging process; please memorize to avoid you:
- French fries: Foods fried in oil at high temperatures release free radicals that can cause cell damage in the skin. Exposure to free radicals accelerates the aging process.
- White bread: When refined carbohydrates integrate with proteins, it causes the formation of active substances that directly affect the skin’s aging process, accelerating the process.
- White sugar: Sugar is one of the leading causes of skin problems and contributes to forming active ingredients that damage collagen.
- Margarine contains trans fatty acids that make the skin more vulnerable to UV radiation, damaging collagen and reducing skin elasticity.
- Processed meats: Sausages and bacon are high in sodium, saturated fat, and sulfites, all of which can dehydrate the skin and weaken collagen by causing inflammation.
- Soda and coffee are high in caffeine, causing insomnia and negatively affecting your skin.
- High-heat processed foods: Certain polyunsaturated oils high in omega-6 fatty acids, like corn or sunflower oils, can increase the rate of skin aging.
- Quit smoking and reduce alcohol/beer: Smoking and alcohol have been shown to cause premature aging and increased disease risk. Alcohol depletes nutrients, depriving the body of vitamin A. Vitamin A is especially important for new cell growth and collagen production, ensuring that skin is elastic and free of wrinkles. Regular alcohol consumption affects other parts and directly pushes the skin to the brink of premature aging.
Calm your mind
Having fun and reducing stress will help you live a long and young life. To keep your mood up, try spending time doing the following:
- Spend time with friends and loved ones: Meaningful relationships and strong social networks improve mental and physical well-being and longevity.
- Pets: Having a pet can reduce stress and blood pressure, reduce loneliness, and improve your mood.
- Accept your age: There is evidence that people who maintain a positive attitude about aging live longer. Aging is inevitable, and learning to embrace it can make all the difference.
- Do the things you enjoy: Taking time to engage in activities you love will boost your happiness.
- Traveling is a good way to “F5” yourself, embrace new things, and give your body a chance to rest.
- Meditation: Meditation combined with regular breathing can help you improve focus, reduce stress, increase immune function, etc.
Get enough sleep
Good sleep is important for your physical and mental health. It also plays a big role in anti-aging skin. Have you ever caught yourself with dark circles under your eyes after a night of staying up late, and then a series of tiny wrinkles appear under the corners of your eyes?
Besides anti-ageing, getting enough sleep also gives you countless great benefits; it has been shown to:
- Reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke
- Reduce stress and depression
- Reduce the risk of obesity
- Reduce inflammation
- Improve concentration
Do not worry if you see the signs of aging; it is the beauty of nature. Take care of your health and the joy of life. Good health and mental well-being slow down aging and help you live a more fulfilling life.