We live in a society obsessed with youth and wrinkle-free skin, so it’s not surprising that most people are looking for ways to prevent wrinkles, and reduce the look of the ones they have. Fortunately, there are ways to do both.
What Causes Them?
Wrinkles appear as the production of collagen and elastin in the dermis of the skin decreases due to aging and exposure to the sun. Collagen and elastin give skin its structural support and elasticity, and when it declines, skin can wrinkle and sag. In addition, the outer layer of the skin called the epidermis thins out with age. This allows moisture to be lost, and skin becomes drier.
Not everyone ages at the same rate. The age at which a person develops wrinkles depends on genetics and lifestyle habits. Lifestyle factors that contribute to wrinkling and premature aging include sun exposure, smoking, a poor diet and overuse of alcohol. Fortunately, many lines can be minimized by wearing sunscreen and sun protective clothing year round. Most premature aging is caused by the sun.
Wearing a sunscreen that guards against both UVA and UVB rays year round should be a priority. It won’t take away wrinkles that have already formed, but it will help to reduce the chances of new ones from forming.
Research shows that products containing vitamin C help to protect against lines and wrinkles and improve the appearance of pre-existing ones. Vitamin C is an antioxidant vitamin that fights the effects of free radicals fromsunlight that prematurely age skin. In addition, it stimulates the production of collagen, the protein that gives skin its support and resiliency. This helps to improve the appearance of fine lines that make skin look older.
For deeper wrinkles, a peptide product can attack deeper lines on multiple levels. These peptides stimulate collagen production and relax tight wrinkles in a manner similar to Botox without the painful injections. They also protect against future skin aging.
Another ingredient that improves the texture of aging skin while minimizing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles is glycolic acid. This is a type of alpha-hydroxy acid that typically comes from sugar cane. This weak acid improves the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles in two ways. It helps to slough off dead skin cells in the outer layer of the skin that contribute to a dull appearance, and it boosts the production of collagen. The result is skin that looks smoother and more youthful.
Dermatologists often prescribe prescription retinoids to treat wrinkles. This is an effective treatment, but many people experience redness and skin irritation when they use them. One alternative is to use products containing retinols. Retinols fight wrinkles without the skin irritation and redness that make retinoids so difficult to tolerate.
A dermatologist or plastic surgeon can do a series of facial peels or a laser treatment to improve the appearance of deeper lines, and they can also inject them with a filler to plump up the underlying dermis and fill in the wrinkle. Botox is an alternative for lines that appear only with facial movement. The drawback to these procedures is cost and laser treatments require downtime for recovery. These more costly, invasive procedures are best reserved for wrinkles that don’t respond to home treatments.