While we haven’t quite yet found the Fountain of Youth, the hunt for some similar iteration seems relentless. While the ageing process is inevitable it is also a natural and beautiful phenomenon. Still, there is no harm or shame in seeking ways to preserve how we look when we feel our best. While the ageing process varies from individual to individual due to our various unique genetic makeups, a lot of it is also dictated by environmental factors which we can control and influence. Small changes from lifestyle, to diet, skincare and mindset can drastically change the way, and rate, in which we age. Here are a few simple changes you can make to ward off the much-dreaded wrinkles and spots, starting with skincare.
1. Use a daily moisturiser
While ageing occurs and affects our whole body, it ultimately begins with the skin. Having a consistent and effective skincare routine will help to decelerate the ageing process. A daily moisturiser will hydrate the skin and allow it to retain water, maintaining a plump and glowy youthfulness. It will also create a barrier against the everyday pollutants, dust and climate we encounter in our day to day lives. This will protect your skin from irritants that wear down your skin and create age spots and wrinkles. The skin tends to undergo the most cell renewal at night, so you can opt for a heavier moisturiser before best to boost skin repair and rejuvenation.
2. Protect yourself from the sun
The only shady business we’re interested in is SPF and slip, slop, slap. While it is just as important to ensure that you are getting your daily dose of vitamin D from the sun, it’s vital to ensure that your skin is protected while doing so. Harmful UV rays play one of the biggest roles in the premature ageing of our skin and can be prevalent even on overcast and cloudy days. Try to work a facial sunscreen with at least SPF 30+, into your daily skincare routine and remember to reapply it every couple of hours.
3. Eat a balanced diet - and up the collagen and omegas
By helping yourself from the inside, it will boost the appearance of your exterior. Make sure that you are drinking enough water and consuming a balanced diet that includes fresh fruit and vegetables, as well as lean sources of protein such as lentils. As we age, the collagen levels in our bodies decline, contributing to wrinkles, weakening muscles and greater stiffness of the body. Proteins from meat and dairy (e.g. bone broth, fish, egg whites) combined with vitamin-C rich foods (e.g. citrus fruits, greens, berries) are effective in boosting natural collagen production and counteracting ageing. Omega-3 rich foods such as fish and nuts are also great at reducing inflammation while simultaneously improving skin barrier functions, boosting hydration and delaying premature skin ageing. Try to also minimise alcohol consumption, as it dehydrates the body, and with excessive consumption ages the appearance of the skin.
4. Be gentle on yourself
This goes for both your physical and mental self. When cleansing, applying makeup or skincare, make sure you don’t scrub excessively or pull and tug at your skin. This will not only irritate and age your skin but also increases the likelihood of premature wrinkles surrounding the more delicate parts of the face, such as the eye area, temples and mouth. When applying eye cream, try applying it with the fingertip of your ring finger, and gently tap until it is absorbed into the skin. Repetitive or habitual facial expressions such as frowning and squinting can also play a part in forming premature wrinkles and is something to be aware of. Try to remove stressors or add de-stressors into your life and ensure that you’re getting a full night’s rest. Poor sleep hinders the ability for the skin to repair itself and also accelerates the ageing process, so try and eliminate screen time 30 minutes before you try to sleep.
When it comes to ageing, time may seem like our greatest enemy, but it is also our greatest asset in the natural process. It is never too late to start slowing the effects of ageing and it pays to start as early as possible. Small changes can make a big difference in the long run- we’re here for a good time, AND a long time.