Can I Push Back Time? A Realistic Approach to Reducing Ageing Effects
No one likes to grow old, especially when it means that your appearance will change, sometimes drastically. Although ageing is a natural process and we should accept it and grow old gracefully, it is difficult. Some people age quicker than others and some people are blessed with great genes, and then there are those who go to great lengths to slow down the ageing process. This module teaches you what happens to your skin as it ages and what physical signs to expect as you grow older. You will also get a better insight on how you can prevent through a careful skincare regime. This module includes the following items:
7.1. What Happens when your Skin ages?
7.2. How your Skin Changes with Each Birthday
7.3. Ethnicity and Ageing
7.4. Ingredients to Look for in Anti-Ageing Products
7.5. Botox versus Facelift
7.1. What Happens when your Skin ages?
As a person gets older, their body produces less collagen and elastin, thus leading to the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. If you add gravity and sun exposure to that equation, the result will be saggy skin that appears leathery and old.
As you grow older, your skin continues to change. It becomes thinner, much drier, and even more fragile as the dermis of the skin begins to thin out. The fatty areas in your chin, cheeks, and nose begin to disappear, again making the skin sag more. More facial hair is evident in women as their bodies go through a number of different hormonal changes, sometimes making the skin more prone to acne and blackhead breakouts.
People, who suffer from oilier skin, will continue to have breakouts; however, there is a positive side to this – the oilier the skin is, the longer it will remain moist and smooth.
Using a good moisturiser over the years is one way that a person can lessen the impact of wrinkles and premature ageing.
Also with age, your body’s ability to attack free radicals that damage your cells and collagen slows down.
Consciously consuming foods with more antioxidants will protect your skin against free radicals and also improve its appearance, which is why vitamins A, C and E are often found in anti-ageing supplements.
7.2. How your Skin changes with each Birthday
Between the ages of 30-35 is the most common time when women give birth to children. Pregnancy is good for a woman’s skin because there is a normal healthy production of the hormonesoestrogen and progesterone. Some women break out in spots due to the overgrowth of blood vessels caused by too much oestrogen. It is also common for the texture of a woman’s skin to become tougher and drier while she is pregnant because the baby takes up so many of its mother’s nutrients.
Some other common features of a woman’s skin in their 30s include:
- Drier and duller in colour due to the slowing down of the production of a person’s skin cells.
- Visible fine lines appear around eyes and mouth.
- Smile lines do not disappear.
- Collagen and elastin start to become weaker.
- Smoking accentuates fine lines.
- May begin to lose part of your skin tone due to the weakening of the lymph glands that are responsible for flushing out all of the body’s toxins.
- Skin’s appearance is less bright.
- Tendency to put on more weight with more visible cellulite due to hormonal changes.
- Stretch marks are more evident through pregnancy or slimming.
When a person is in their 40s their lymphatic system begins to steadily slow down resulting in puffiness in and around the eye and cheek areas. This is a period when a person, especially a woman will notice visible physical differences in their appearance due to their age.
People in their 40s will notice:
- More susceptible to the environment around them, such as smoky or polluted places due to the skin’s waxy protective coating being weaker. It is weaker due to the body’s lower sebum production.
- Oestrogen production slows down resulting in duller skin.
- Evidence of sagging and wrinkles around the neck and chest areas.
- Increased cellulite and fat deposits around the hip and thigh areas.
More visible signs of ageing can be seen on other parts of the body other than the face in a person’s 50s. Pigmentation patches on the skin are common as are age spots. Excesses over the years, such as drinking, smoking, and sun worshipping will begin to show in damaged skin like spider veins caused by damaged blood vessels caused by the sun.
People in their 50s will notice:
- Increased pore size.
- Flakier skin.
- Wrinkles become more apparent due to dehydration of the skin caused by weaker skin cells.
- Eyelids may become hooded and wrinkled.
- Break down of skin’s elasticity.
- Menopause begins in women and the decreased oestrogen levels slow down the production of sebum resulting in drier skin.
- Facial hair in women is not uncommon due to hormone imbalances brought on by menopause.
- Skin is more likely to dry out and crack.
- Loss of muscle tone and definition.
7.3. Ethnicity and Ageing
A lot of how you age is related to the colour of your skin and your ethnicity.
The paler or fairer you are, the more you will have to do to protect it from ageing prematurely externally. Naturally, your melanin levels are lower, which means that the harmful UVA/UVB rays can penetrate much deeper into your skin thus causing photo-ageing and contributing to your skin’s break down of elastin and collagen.
For white complexions, the most important anti-ageing weapon would be a broad spectrum SPF 30 sun cream which has both UVA and UVB protection. Apply this daily, even when it is cloudy to every bit of your skin that is exposed, especially your face and neck.
Keep your skin nice and soft with its natural oils intact by using a gentle cleanser. After cleansing, apply your broad-spectrum cream and then your make-up.
Fairer skin tones have less collagen bundles than darker skin tones, which results in getting fine lines earlier than other ethnicities.
Use night creams that contain retinoids to boost the skin-cell turnover and thicken your thinning skin to make it feel and appear smoother. Look out for products that contain antioxidants such as soy, vitamins C and E to help nourish the skin and repair it.
When fairer skin is damaged by the sun, it causes the skin to develop an uneven skin tone. To overcome this, replace your harsher facial and body scrubs with natural enzyme-based scrubs and exfoliants. If you find that retinol creams are toosevere for your face, try peptides instead as they act as a great collagen booster.
Because you have a warmer skin tone, it is likely you will show signs of ageing with fine lines and wrinkles later than people that have fairer skin.
Your skin haslower melanin content than those people with darker skin, but more than people with lighter skin. Your risk of sun damage compared to the fairer skinned person is significantly lower, but there is still a risk, which is why it is important to still always wear a broad-spectrum sun cream.
Generally, olive skin tans well, but at the same time it is more susceptible to melasma, which are darker brown patches of skin on the forehead, upper lip, cheeks, and chin areas. It is possible to fade these darker patches using certain creams and lotions that contain hydroquinone, azelaic acid or kojic acid. The combination of antioxidants in the above ingredients will help protect the skin from further damage; it will also help even out the skin tone, and strengthen the skin’s outer layer to help it retain its moisture. Continue wearing a high SPF sun cream that has zinc oxide or titanium dioxide.
Olive skin tones are prone to hypigmentation as they grow older. To help combat this, use a gentle foaming cleanser to get rid of the excess oil and then follow up by applying a serum which is rich in vitamin C.
People with olive skin are also more prone to an under-the-eye hollowness as they get older. To firm up the sagging skin in these areas use a night cream that contains peptides.
Middle Eastern and Asian Skin
Middle Eastern and Asian ethnicities do not begin to show signs of ageing until their mid-forties. However, although wrinkles tend to come later, these ethnicities are more prone to getting an uneven skin tone and darker patchy areas due to hormones, irritation and too much sun exposure.
Because of the excess pigment in the skin, Asians and those from the Middle East are prone to darker circles under the eyes. These bags under the eyes are often accentuated by the loss of volume under this area as a person ages. These ethnicities also suffer from more water retention when their hormones change, which again worsens the appearance under the eyes.
To try and reduce any signs of ageing underneath the eyes, you need to apply an eye cream that has cucumber extract, caffeine, or vitamin E to make the skin plumper and fresher looking.
Cleanse your skin gently with a face cloth and lukewarm water. After cleansing, use a serum that contains kokic acid to help fade the darker areas of the skin caused by hyperpigmentation and sun damage.
The moisturiser you use should be nourishing and rich. It should also contain salicylic acid, which will prevent your pores from getting too clogged.
Black / Dark Skin
Due to the high melanin levels in darker skin, they will not see any signs of ageing until their late 40’s or even 50’s. However, over time, darker skin loses its density and could result in sagging. To fight the sagging, opt for creams containing peptides as they help the body produce more collagen.
Darker skin tones also tend to suffer from uneven skin tones. You cannot scrub this away, so to reduce the severity of this, use a gentle cleanser together with an electric brush and glycolic toner to help stimulate your skin’s collagen and fade the darker patchy areas while regulating the skin’s oil production at the same time.
Moisturise in the morning with a cream that is rich in vitamin C. This will help brighten your skin and even out the patchier areas. In the evening, use creams that contain retinol, peptides and ceramides to hydrate the skin and prevent sagging.
Some people with darker skin benefit from semi-regular microdermabrasion treatments. This treatment is done by licensed professionals and gently buffs the skin, getting rid of all the dead skin cells to help even out and soften the skin with reduced pores.
7.4. Ingredients to Look for in Anti-Ageing Products
Retinol comes from vitamin A. Although it may take a few weeks to start seeing results, it is the most effective anti-ageing ingredient bought over the counter. It helps smooth out the face’s wrinkles and unclogs the pores. Additionally, it helps improve the skin’s texture and lightens superficial dark spots. Retinol is quite potent, which results in some people suffering from skin irritation, especially when they come into contact with direct sunlight. Use retinol-based anti-ageing products at nighttime on dry skin and make sure you apply an SPF moisturiser in the morning.
If you suffer from darker uneven spots that have been caused by acne scars, old age, or sun damage, you can use a product that contains niacinamade, which comes from vitamin B3 to lighten them and prevent melanin from rising to the skin’s surface. As a result your skin’s moisture and collagen production will improve and slowly over time reverse the damage from the sun.
Hyaluronic acid is a form of humectants, which means that it draws water from both the air and dermis. Lotions with hyaluronic acid have excellent hydrating qualities and sometimes help improve collagen production to firm up sagging skin.
Alpha Hydroxyl Acid
Alpha hydroxyl acids (AHAs) work as exfoliators. They help remove dead skin cells and encourage new cell turnover revealing more youthful skin. When you exfoliate your skin, you will also allow serums, moisturisers, and other skin treatments to absorb and penetrate the skin more effectively. Look for a product that has 8% or less AHAs – when there are high concentrations of AHAs, you will help reduce and fade brown marks, spots and fine lines, but it will also make you more vulnerable and sensitive to the sun.
L-ascorbic acid is another word for vitamin C. It helps build your skin’s collagen, helps to reduce any inflammation, and at the same time it plumps up the skin and promotes elasticity.
This is a common chemical ingredient found in sun creams and sun blocks. Usually, this is found in combination with oxybenzone or benzophenone-3 to help block UVB rays. Use this before applying your regularmoisturiser or serum.
Antioxidants help to prevent more damage happening and they also help repair your body’stissue and cell damage. They neutralise the free radicals and promote cell grown. Popular antioxidants found in anti-ageing products include vitamins C and E, green tea, berry extracts, and pomegranate.
7.5. Botox versus Facelift
While Botox and facelifts are more extreme measures for looking young, they are not uncommon and it is becoming increasingly common for people, especially in the 40s and 50s, to go under the knife whereas the popularity of Botox is waning slightly.
When a person’s age begins to show from their many years of excessive sun exposure, pollutants, daily life stress, and smoking, they begin to suffer from wrinkles, some of which are deeper creases than others. It is also common for a person to suffer from sagging skin around the jaw line and neck area, which often makes them appear older than they really are.
No person really enjoys the idea of having an invasive facelift, otherwise known as rhytidectomysurgergy and the long hard recovery process that follows, but it does not stop people, especially in the US where 13 million people undergo surgery for anti-ageing purposes alone each year.
Can you explain the difference between Botox and facelifts?
A facelift is an invasive surgical procedure while Botox are injections and are non-surgical.
Some people opt for Botox because it is non-surgical; however, it really depends on the specific problems you have to know which anti-ageing beauty procedure is the right one for you. The important thing to remember is that facelifts and Botox are completely different and they are used for completely different purposes – they do complement each other, but it is essential to remember that they do not produce the same results.
People have facelifts usually to reshape their deep facial structures. Additionally, they are used to try and remove extra skin tissue which results in a more youthful appearance; these saggy skin tissues are usually located in the lower region of the face, neck, and jowls. If a person has a lot of sagging skin, there is nothing that can be done to reduce it significantly. To reduce the skin, it needs to be removed, repositioned, and repaired. Some facelift surgeries might involve eyelid surgery, a neck lift, or a forehead lift to improve the appearance and age of a person.
Facelift surgery helps correct the following problems:
- Deep under-the-eye creases and wrinkles
- Deep forehead wrinkles and creases
- Droopy eyebrows
- Lowered cheek pads
- Deep creases, folds or wrinkles along the nose
- Saggy jowls
- Double chin
Botox is a form of botulinum toxin. It is directed at a person’s overactive muscles to help alleviate expression lines, wrinkles, and crows’ feet. Usually Botox is used mostly in the upper parts of a person’s face,in the corners of a person’s eyes, forehead creases, and lines and wrinkles that form between the eyebrows. The muscles absorb the Botox and help them relax more. Botox injections do not really have any impact on the skin and Botox is often referred to as a “non-surgical facelift.” However, it cannot really be called a facelift because it does not involve any kind of skin removal or lifting. However, the Botox injections can help the skin’s appearance look smoother, softer, and more youthful.
Botox helps correct the following problems:
- Fine facial lines and wrinkles
- Expression lines e.g. laughter lines
- Crows’ feet
- Furrows between the eyebrows
- Fine forehead lines and wrinkles
- Neck bands
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