Aging Skin Tips – It’s Never Too Late

As you get older, your skin’s health changes. You can see these changes in the texture, firmness, and strength of your skin—especially the skin on your face. In a previous blog, we reviewed the reasons why skin changes as we age, covering the different internal and external factors that can degrade skin health. You can get a recap here.

If you’re like me and choose NOT to age gracefully, here are some tips to increase the health of your skin, especially as it gets more vulnerable with age.

 

1. Fight glycation by reducing the sugar in your diet

Glycation is the process by which glucose and fructose molecules (AKA sugar!) bind to proteins and fats in our body and create AGEs: advanced glycation end products. The synthesis of AGEs degrades the collagen and elastin molecules in our skin, damaging its integrity and firmness. Think of browning of meat which is the result of the Maillard reaction – and notice that coating your meat with honey or sugar makes it brown quickly and evenly. The same is happening to the skin on your face: sugar+protein ->Maillard reaction = browning!

Because glycation is directly caused by the sugar we ingest, focus on managing your sugar and carbohydrate intake. Remember: carbs are not bad, they are necessary for your health. However, in excess levels, high sugar levels can contribute to increased glycation in our body which more readily breaks down the collagen and elastin in our skin. According to the American Heart Association, dietary intake limit of added sugars is about 25 grams (6 teaspoons) per day for women, and 36 grams (9 teaspoons) per day for men. And if you are diabetic or pre-diabetic, aim for even lower added sugars as many whole foods already contain natural sugars.

To further manage the effects of sugar on your health, you can also check out our past blog on blood sugar management here to learn more about decreasing the effects of sugar on your body!

 

2. Protect against the photoaging process

Protective sunscreen is the best way you can prevent photoaging and the harmful health effects of UV exposure. For a daily face sunscreen, we recommend the Cocokind Daily SPF which has a 2/10 rating from the Environmental Working Group (Note: 1 is best in EWG ratings, not 10).

For other simple tips, throw on a wide brimmed hat or ball cap when working in the garden, and opt for long sleeves when you can do so without overheating yourself. Remember: UV light exposure is responsible for the majority of skin aging—taking small steps can lead to big differences in your skin’s health!

For more sunscreen recommendations, you can also check out our past blog on sunscreen do’s and don’ts, linked here.

 

3. Regularly cleanse and exfoliate your skin

Perhaps it’s obvious to regularly clean your skin in order to improve its health. However, there are certain ingredients to avoid when it comes to your skin cleansers—retinol, formaldehyde, and sulfates. All of these can decrease the helpful aspects of cleansers as they have been labeled carcinogenic. You can read the blog here for more about why to avoid these ingredients!

Instead, opt for a gentle cleanser without one of these ingredients. You can scan through the list of EWG verified facial cleansers at the link here, though we recommend speaking with your dermatologist who can recommend a gentle cleanser depending on your specific skin type.

Additionally, to clean off the dirt and pollutants your skin is exposed to daily, be sure to exfoliate regularly—two to three times per week. Again, to avoid unnecessary chemical exposure, opt for a natural exfoliator. Consider the Honest Beauty Skin Sweep Exfoliating Powder Cleanser or Sally B’s Moisturizing Body Buff for a full body exfoliation. Both are EWG verified, meaning they meet the Environmental Working Group’s strictest standards for health and safety and provide full transparency about their ingredients.

As you get older, your skin’s health changes. You can see these changes in the texture, firmness, and strength of your skin—especially the skin on your face. In a previous blog, we reviewed the reasons why skin changes as we age, covering the different internal and external factors that can degrade skin health. You can get a recap here.

If you’re like me and choose NOT to age gracefully, here are some tips to increase the health of your skin, especially as it gets more vulnerable with age.

4. Fight glycation by reducing the sugar in your diet

Glycation is the process by which glucose and fructose molecules (AKA sugar!) bind to proteins and fats in our body and create AGEs: advanced glycation end products. The synthesis of AGEs degrades the collagen and elastin molecules in our skin, damaging its integrity and firmness. Think of browning of meat which is the result of the Maillard reaction – and notice that coating your meat with honey or sugar makes it brown quickly and evenly. The same is happening to the skin on your face: sugar+protein ->Maillard reaction = browning!

Because glycation is directly caused by the sugar we ingest, focus on managing your sugar and carbohydrate intake. Remember: carbs are not bad, they are necessary for your health. However, in excess levels, high sugar levels can contribute to increased glycation in our body which more readily breaks down the collagen and elastin in our skin. According to the American Heart Association, dietary intake limit of added sugars is about 25 grams (6 teaspoons) per day for women, and 36 grams (9 teaspoons) per day for men. And if you are diabetic or pre-diabetic, aim for even lower added sugars as many whole foods already contain natural sugars.

To further manage the effects of sugar on your health, you can also check out our past blog on blood sugar management here to learn more about decreasing the effects of sugar on your body!

5. Protect against the photoaging process

Protective sunscreen is the best way you can prevent photoaging and the harmful health effects of UV exposure. For a daily face sunscreen, we recommend the Cocokind Daily SPF which has a 2/10 rating from the Environmental Working Group (Note: 1 is best in EWG ratings, not 10).

For other simple tips, throw on a wide brimmed hat or ball cap when working in the garden, and opt for long sleeves when you can do so without overheating yourself. Remember: UV light exposure is responsible for the majority of skin aging—taking small steps can lead to big differences in your skin’s health!

For more sunscreen recommendations, you can also check out our past blog on sunscreen do’s and don’ts, linked here.

6. Regularly cleanse and exfoliate your skin

Perhaps it’s obvious to regularly clean your skin in order to improve its health. However, there are certain ingredients to avoid when it comes to your skin cleansers—retinol, formaldehyde, and sulfates. All of these can decrease the helpful aspects of cleansers as they have been labeled carcinogenic. You can read the blog here for more about why to avoid these ingredients!

Instead, opt for a gentle cleanser without one of these ingredients. You can scan through the list of EWG verified facial cleansers at the link here, though we recommend speaking with your dermatologist who can recommend a gentle cleanser depending on your specific skin type.

Additionally, to clean off the dirt and pollutants your skin is exposed to daily, be sure to exfoliate regularly—two to three times per week. Again, to avoid unnecessary chemical exposure, opt for a natural exfoliator. Consider the Honest Beauty Skin Sweep Exfoliating Powder Cleanser or Sally B’s Moisturizing Body Buff for a full body exfoliation. Both are EWG verified, meaning they meet the Environmental Working Group’s strictest standards for health and safety and provide full transparency about their ingredients.

"Aging is a fact of life. Looking your age is NOT.”

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