While getting older is great for gaining wisdom and a lot more zen than we may once have had, what it does to our skin isn’t so welcome,
Some type of skin sagging is unavoidable with age, though. That’s because our skin uses the two proteins – collagen and elastin – to stay plump and smooth.
Collagen is the most common protein, comprising about 75 per cent of our skin’s make-up, and from the age of 29, the body loses 1 per cent of its collagen each year. And while our body continues creating new collagen, outside factors, ranging from smoking to sun damage and weight loss, can slow down this production, meaning our skin loses its plump, smooth look as we get older.
While there are no solutions for dramatically improving already-sagging skin that don’t involve trips to the dermatologist or the cosmetic surgeon, there are things you can do that will help prevent further damage and thus future sags and bags, as well as improve the look of wrinkled, loose skin.
As you likely already know, lathering on the SPF 30+ and applying a suitable moisturiser once or twice a day will help protect the skin. Skin specific vitamin supplements that include vitamins A, E and C are also helpful and easily available over the counter.
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Light muscle strengthening will help prevent further sagging in your upper-arm skin, as well as improving the appearance of existing loose skin. Exercises such as push-ups, tricep dips and bent-over rows are perfect for this.
Neck exercises for loose skin can include pressing your palm against your forehead and pushing your neck forward against the resistance of your hand.
To improve the appearance of breasts that may’ve drooped, building your pectoral muscles by doing chest presses with light weights will help. If you don’t have any weights to hand, clasp your hands at chest level in front of your body and press your palms together then release and repeat. There’s no need to chant ‘I must, I must, I must increase my bust’ as you do, though!
Another simple remedy is to start the day with a cold shower. As uncomfortable as it is, cold water one of the quickest ways to temporarily tighten the skin. If a freezing cold shower doesn’t appeal to you, simply washing your face in water chilled with some ice cubes in the basin will have the same result.
And while ageing skin is constantly spoken about as as negative, there are some up sides. Sure, there may be a few more sagging or wrinkled bits than previously, but the slowdown in collagen production also means slower natural oil production, so fewer oily patches and break-outs. With regular moisturising to offset this reduction in oiliness, your skin will still feel smooth to touch.
Are you bothered by the signs of ageing, or accept them as a natural part of a life well lived? What do you use to keep your skin healthy?