What Causes Wrinkles?

Wrinkles are often an after-thought – something that we really don’t think about until we have them, however, by the time we have them, prevention is too late. So when is the time to start thinking about wrinkles? When you don’t have them.

While I have upmost admiration and respect for people who ‘age gracefully’, at the end of the day – we are the ones who live in our own bodies and we need to be comfortable and confident in what we see looking back at us in the mirror. The best power we can have is to be armed with the right information to make our own choices and age gracefully in our on way: with no help, a little help or a lot of help!

The causes of wrinkles:

  1. Expressive/Dynamic wrinkles are caused by facial expressions and over-use of certain muscles or certain positions. Frequent use of these expressions etch the beginnings of fine lines and wrinkles. Some people are genetically dispositioned to utilise certain muscles in their face: forehead and frown lines are classic examples.
  2. Loss of elasticity in our skin: As part of the ageing process, our cells slow the production of the important ‘stuff’, like elastin and collagen. Thus, the ability for the skin to actively rejuvenate itself is slowed and less effective over time.
  3. Stripping hydration from our skin: using harsh products on our skin or dehydrating our skin from the over-use of nutrient poor products (like make-up) and not replenishing our skin of hydration, nutrients, minerals and oils at the end of the day will cause dehydration, and in turn – fine lines and wrinkles.

Prevention of wrinkles:

  • Stay out of the sun: the sun is most damaging between 10am and 4pm and is the leading cause of pre-mature ageing (signs of ageing that are caused before the actual on-set of typical ageing).
  • Protect yourself from the sun: ensure that you’re protected when in the sun – slip, slop and slap is still a valid phrase, not just for skin cancer prevention, but anti-ageing too!
  • Know your SPF: If you’re like most people, you may not even know what on earth “SPF” actually stands for. Well, today’s your lucky day – SPF stands for Sun Protection Factor and the SPF required will vary from person to person and is all dependent on your skin type and how quickly you typically start to be effected by sun exposure.
    Typically, fair skinned people may begin to experience some heat and redness in their skin after 3 minutes of sun exposure. If this fair skinned person utilises a SPF 15+ – that person will be protected for 3 (minutes) x 15 (protection offered by the chosen sunscreen) = 45 minutes of protection. This means that this person would need to re-apply before the end of 45 minutes.
  • Healthy diet: The skin’s foundations are built from the inside out, so be sure to boost your intake of nutrients so that the skin can form strong, robust and healthy skin cells and be better able to rejuvenate itself.
  • De-stress: stress increases the production of the cortisol hormone which can damage your skin’s collagen and elastin production – de-stabilising the skin cell’s foundations. Take time to meditate, relax and restore calmness to your being.
  • Exercise: activity will help boost circulation to your body and deposit minerals and nutrients where you need them most!
  • Employ a robust and regular skincare routine: identify your skin type and cater for your skin. Therefore, if your skin is sensitive, don’t over-work the skin by using over-active products that will do more harm than good to your skin. Equally, if your skin is able to cope with some active ingredients with beneficial properties, there’s no issue in incorporating this into your routine. The key here is:
    1. Cater to your skin type.
    2. Don’t just cleanse! Exfoliant, serum, toner, mask and moisturiser exists too!
    3. Make a routine of it! Consistency is key: be sure to commit to your routine morning and night!
    4. As your skin changes, adapt your skincare range to suit.

Advance your skincare:

Sometimes we need an added boost – and I’m all for it. There are now ways to further your skincare routine and you’d be silly not to take advantage of it. Personally, I found that once I understood the skin and how it works, that there’s really no reason to ignore treatments

  • Schedule regular facials at a trusted Beauty Therapy or Skincare clinic.
  • Experiment with more advanced treatments – like microdermabrasion, enzyme peels, fractionated LASER and IPL to boost and replenish the skin.
  • Injectable muscle relaxants like botox can help to relax over-active muscles and expressions. Don’t give in to the idea that botox is ‘evil’ – it can actually be a lifesaver for people who suffer from severe hereditary frown lines or forehead lines.

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