ageing-blog

The changing face in the mirror – from a woman’s perspective

‘We are always the same age inside’
Gertrude Stein

Beautiful skin is something that most women love to have. Many are blessed with good skin and take care of it from their late teens onwards. With a balanced diet, plenty of fresh air and sleep, plus the investment in quality products, a woman finds that her skin continues to look supple and radiant until well into her 40s and 50s. Suddenly one day though, a glance in the mirror can reveal ageing skin – but why?

What external causes ageing skin?

As a woman ages, so does her skin as it becomes thinner with less fat and is no longer as smooth and as plump as it once was. By the time a woman is 50, her skin will feel noticeably drier to touch and will be starting to lose its beautiful radiance.

Photoageing

ageingTop of the list and accounting for 90% of the symptoms of premature skin ageing is Ultra Violet (UV) radiation. UV rays damage collagen in your skin, breaking it down and preventing the development of new collagen.

Repeated exposure to the sun’s UV rays can quickly speed up the skin ageing process. Just a few minutes exposure to the sun every day for five years will make a noticeable difference to the skin as it will become loose, wrinkled and feel more leathery. Continued exposure will make the wrinkles larger and more defined. As well as ageing, UV rays damage the structure of the skin and can also cause skin cancer.

Oxidative Stress

Also high on the list of causes of ageing skin is oxidative stress, which is the release of free radicals. These can cause premature ageing by damaging the structure of the skin cells and its important components such as hyaluronic acid, collagen and elastin. Normally, free radicals are successfully neutralised by the antioxidants in the skin, but this process becomes less effective as the skin ages.
Oxidative Stress cab be caused by exposure to the sun, air pollution plus the chemicals and nicotine in cigarettes.

ageingThe breakdown of Collagen

Collagen is a protein in the skin that plays an important part in ensuring it remains supple and elastic. 75% of the skin is comprised of collagen which keeps it tight and firm. From the age of 25, the amount of collagen in the skin begins to decrease by 1% each year and this leads to the first fine lines appearing as a woman enters her thirties. The main way to boost the amount of collagen in skin is to eat foods rich in Vitamin C and Hyaluronic acid.

Inflammation

The skin becomes inflamed when it is trying to protect itself from UV rays, chemicals, pollutants, bacteria and viruses. This is not a problem in the short term, but when this is a regular occurrence with the skin becoming permanently red, itchy and inflamed, the ageing process is accelerated.

A spoonful of sugar

In recent years, it has been established that eating sugar is ageing for the skin. The sugar does not let the skin’s collagen or elastin function properly. Glycation is the name of the process when sugar molecules attach themselves to the protein fibres and disrupt the work of them both in keeping the skin supple and elastic.

What are the internal causes?

ageingThe menopause

The menopause certainly has a detrimental effect on skin as decreased levels of hormones, including oestrogen, are experienced during this period of a woman’s life. During this stage, the body reduces the amount of collagen it produces and the layer of fat under the skin also reduces. This results in the skin losing some of its firmness and can cause ‘sagging’ of the mid-face, jowls and neck.

Poorer blood circulation

In younger women, oxygen and nutrients are carried speedily to their skin by their blood supply. As a woman ages, her circulation can become sluggish, blood does not move as quickly as it once did resulting in skin that looks duller and less fresh.

The role of genetics

Like with many things, genetics can affect the way skin ages and women with lighter, more sensitive skin will find that their skin ages more quickly than those with darker skins.

ageingLifestyle is important

A holistic approach to lifestyle and skincare works best and these factors should all be considered to help prevent premature skin ageing:

  • Drink plenty of fluids every day – hydration is key
  • Always wear sun protection outdoors – even on a cloudy day – SP50 and re-apply it every to hours.
  • Quit smoking – it causes Oxidative Stress.
  • Ensure you take plenty of quality downtime each day to keep stress levels under control.

There are other lifestyle changes that can be made to help slow down the ageing process of skin. Eating a healthy well-balanced diet, reducing the amount of alcohol consumed, taking regular exercise can be really beneficial too – we all know this !! But you will NEVER regret starting to look after your skin!

There are also a variety of excellent aesthetic treatments for fine lines and wrinkles as well as dermal fillers that give skin volume and fullness. All of the procedures offered at Jayne Taylor Aesthetics are quick, effective and affordable. As Dr Howard Murad, the ‘father of modern wellness’ explains –

‘Ageing is a fact of life. Looking your age is not’…

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