10 Ways to Stay Looking Young
Everyone wants to look their best, and I try my best to stress the importance of prevention when it comes to aging. But with that said, more often than not, I see patients who make their first dermatologist visit when signs of aging have become significantly noticeable. In an effort to spread the word about the power of prevention, here are my 10 tips for keeping your skin looking young.
1. Wear Sunscreen
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, sunscreen is the most powerful skincare product for preventing signs of aging like fine lines, wrinkles, discoloration, rough texture and sagging.
2. Start Using a Retinoid
When it comes to anti-aging products, retinoids and their over-the-counter retinol counterparts have been proven to keep skin looking its best, especially when you start early. Retinoids exfoliate and boost your skin’s natural collagen production.
Older skin has a slowed cell cycle which means that dead skin cells pile up on the skin’s surface. This makes it less able to reflect light and it looks dull.
This drawing of the epidermis from my textbook shows the skin cells piled up on the surface of the skin. Patients tell me that “My skin is not radiant!” or “My skin looks old.” Exfoliation removes the uppermost layers of dead skin cells that cause the skin to appear dull and years older than it really is. By exfoliating with a scrub, acid or skincare brush, you sweep away these dead cells and keep fresh, healthy, younger-looking skin on the surface. Not everyone should exfoliate. It depends upon your Baumann Skin Type®. I see many patients who are exfoliating who should not be, so please discuss this with your dermatologist. For example, sensitive skin types should not exfoliate because they are more prone to inflammation.
4. Make a Plan to Relax
Add meditation, yoga or another routine to your day to help you relax, When you are stressed, your body produces a hormone called cortisol. Cortisol has a deleterious effect on your skin because it causes blood sugar levels to spike. Increased blood glucose levels lead to a process called glycation. Glycation compromises your skin’s collagen and other important proteins and leads to wrinkles (Dermato-endocrinology).
5. Cut down on sugar consumption
Your diet can also cause glycation, especially if it’s high in sugars, whether from sugar found in sweets or starchy foods like bread.
Instead of stocking up on these foods, you can boost your skin’s health by eating more fruits and vegetables that contain antioxidants, such as berries, bell peppers, pecans, walnuts, and artichokes (Food & Function).
Exercise has been shown to have many beneficial effects- especially on insulin resistance and mitochondrial function; both of which play a role in aging. Although most of the research is in skeletal muscle, it is likely that exercise improves the skin’s mitochondrial function and insulin resistance as well. Weight bearing exercise and cardiopulmonary exercise have both shown benefits.
7. Buy a new sunscreen
Sunscreens lose efficacy pretty quicky, especially if stored in hot sunny places. It is best to replace them every 6 months.
8. Get Your Beauty Sleep
We mentioned cortisol before, but did you know that lack of sleep also causes your body to produce this aging hormone (Sleep)? The National Sleep Foundation recommends that adults get between 7 and 9 hours of sleep each night for optimum function. Use one of the wearable tech devices to see how much sleep you are getting. You will probably be surprised how little you actually get. I was!
9. Consider anti-aging treatments
There are many of them. Find a reputable doctor and get their opinion. I have personally trained the doctors that are a part of my Skin Type Solution Franchise. If one of the doctors that I have trained is not in your area, put your zip code in this website to find a board certified doctor in your area.
10. Take Care of Your Hands
Most of us go to great lengths to minimize aging on our faces, but we forget about our hands. You should be wearing SPF on your hands daily, and for even more anti-aging, always rub any excess facial skincare products you use onto the backs of your hands. Lasers, microneedling and dermal fillers in addition to skincare products can really help.
For additional skincare tips and tricks to keep your skin looking and feeling its best and brightest, follow us on Facebook. You can also visit www.skintypesolutions.com for more information on how to customize your skincare routine to match your unique skin type and get the beautiful, youthful-looking skin you want!
Dr. Leslie Baumann, M.D. and her team at Baumann Cosmetic Dermatology believe in proof, not promises. World-recognized for both cosmetic and general dermatology, our treatment strategies rely exclusively on evidence-based, scientifically verified products and procedures that promote skin health and a natural appearance. We combine effective medical procedures with individualized instruction on proper skincare, nutrition, supplementation and lifestyle in order to maximize the health of the skin and body as a whole while minimizing the effects of aging. For more, visit Dr. Baumann’s blog for daily updates Monday through Friday, or inquire about an appointment through Derm.net.