Five Wrinkle-Forming Habits You Need to Ditch

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Our skin naturally changes as we age: fewer oils are produced, tissues thin, and collagen production decreases. Exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet light speeds this natural aging process further by breaking down the skin’s connective tissues and elastin fibers, leaving it saggy and wrinkly.

Wrinkles may be a part of the natural aging process, but there are steps you can take to make them less likely. But even if you apply moisturizers vigilantly, avoid cigarette smoking, and refuse to leave the house without sun protection, you could be unintentionally sabotaging your skin every day with these five wrinkle-forming habits.

1. Overindulging on the wrong foods

A diet that’s high in processed foods and added sugar isn’t just bad for your waistline; it can cause your skin to prematurely age by causing inflammation.

To help keep your face smooth and supple, focus on healthier options. Look for foods high in essential fatty acids. To get these healthy fats, eat fatty fish (think salmon and mackerel), olive oil, avocados, nuts, and seeds.

Add more vitamin-rich fruits and vegetables to your diet, too, because they provide essential nutrients and antioxidants -- such as vitamin C and carotenoids -- to keep skin healthy and encourage collagen production for a firmer, more youthful appearance.

And don’t skimp on the protein. The protein in foods like lean beef, poultry, eggs, dairy, beans, and legumes provides building blocks for producing new skin cells and collagen. These foods contain zinc, too, which helps decrease inflammation and keeps skin healthy.

While you’re helping yourself to that second serving of fruits and veggies, don’t forget to have an extra glass of water to keep your skin hydrated.

2. Stressing out

Suffering from stress takes a toll on your entire body, but it leaves its mark on your face.

Not only do personal and work-related stressors have a harmful effect on critical DNA in your cells, but it can also lead to cellular aging. Stress also increases cortisol levels which create skin inflammation and directly impact your skin’s ability to retain moisture.

Experiencing high levels of stress also elevates your blood sugar, which leads to damage to collagen and elastin fibers in your skin. These important substances keep wrinkles from developing by keeping your skin firm.

Protect your body and your skin by practicing stress-busting techniques like meditation and yoga.

3. Not getting enough sleep

It’s called beauty sleep for a reason: it plays an essential role in your overall health by recharging your body and eliminating toxins. Yet, despite its importance, over one-third of American adults aren’t getting the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep per night.

When you’re deprived of sleep, your body is vulnerable to a variety of negative side effects that impact your weight, mind, and appearance. Lack of sleep even alters your skin’s pH and impairs its ability to stay hydrated.

To get even more wrinkle-reducing benefits during sleep, lie on your back to avoid putting pressure on one side of your face every night.

4. Chewing gum and drinking from straws

When you flex and contract your facial muscles, lines and creases form on your face. As your face loses its elasticity with age, these lines and grooves can become more pronounced and permanent.

Regular gum chewing or drinking from a straw causes the repeated flexing and contracting of muscles in your jaw and around your mouth. Over time, the muscles used in these actions become stronger, even leading the corners of your mouth to turn downward.

These types of repeated actions encourage fine lines to form and become more pronounced as muscles strengthen.

5. Skipping your workout

The next time you think about skipping your workout, don’t think about your waistline, think about your skin.

While extreme exercise can lead to collagen breakdown and saggy skin, regular moderate exercise can have a rejuvenating effect. Researchers at McMaster University in Ontario have proven that as little as 30 minutes of exercise twice a week can both reduce and reverse the appearance of aging on your skin.

If you’re looking for solutions to existing fine lines and wrinkles, come into Brickell Cosmetic Center for one of our treatments that restore and rejuvenate your skin. Call the office or schedule an appointment online today.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.