Aging - a natural process that every living organism goes through. While getting older is inevitable, the rate at which and how we age is not entirely out of our control.
We agree that there are some factors which influence the whole aging process, including genetics, diet, lifestyle and environmental circumstances. And most of their unpleasant consequences show up on our skin first. Understanding how our skin ages is essential for making informed decisions and prioritizing self-care to ensure that we positively impact the skin aging process and preserve our beauty, vitality and youthfulness in the future.
Here are some key aspects you need to know about skin aging.
How and When Our Skin Ages
Surprisingly enough, our skin starts to age as early as our mid-20s. Skin aging affects every layer of the skin - from the upper epidermis layer, to the deeper dermal and subdermal skin layers. Different changes happen on each skin layer, primarily caused by the gradual loss of collagen and elastin fibers in the skin. After age 25 those foundational skin-building proteins drop by 1% every passing year.
Collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid are the essential proteins that give the skin strength, plumpness, firmness and elasticity. With their decreasing production, the skin weakens its structural integrity, resulting in fine lines, wrinkles, sagging, loss of contour and volume.
What Causes Skin Aging
Skin aging is caused by a combination of external and internal factors. By comprehending these factors, we can effectively care for aging skin, minimize its visible signs and safeguard against premature skin aging.
Internal factors such as genetics, hormone changes and metabolic changes can greatly impact the aging process.
For example, a decrease in the quantity of hyaluronic acid in the epidermal layer and slower cell turnover, results in a reduction in the production of sebum. This occurrence makes the skin dry, rough, dull, with little elasticity. Moreover, epidermal thinning also occurs, making the skin more vulnerable to damage and rapid loss of hydration. This means that your skin can become more sensitive to UV damage, it has weaker healing power and reduced immune function, leading to increase of inflammation and slower wound recovery.
In the deeper dermal and subdermal layers, when collagen and elastin are declining, it causes dermal tissue disorganization. This results in compromised skin structure and it's much easier for fine lines, wrinkles and loss of volume to appear on the face.
External factors such as prolonged sun exposure, smoking, urban and industrial pollution and poor lifestyle choices can significantly accelerate the aging process by breaking down collagen and elastin fibers, increasing skin inflammation and inducing irreversible DNA damage. All external factors cause oxidative stress to the cells by releasing free radical molecules that damage and break down the skin cell structure, which imminently ages the skin.
The harmful UV radiation from the sun is one of the primary contributors to skin aging. Prolonged sun exposure can cause pigmentation changes like photoaging and uneven pigmentation, dry and crusty skin, deep wrinkles or even skin cancer. Paired with the pollution from the city, the oxidative stress to the skin skyrockets, generating even bigger free radical damage to the skin.
Smoking, drinking, bad diet, stress and sedentary lifestyle can be a huge reason for premature aging. They cause lack of nutrition, oxidative stress and poor blood supply and prevent the proper and necessary delivery of nutrients and oxygen to the skin.
As a result, the skin becomes duller, with uneven and harsh texture, lost radiance and elasticity, broken and visible capillaries appear, redness, wrinkles and saggy areas start to permanently form.
What Are The Signs Of Skin Aging
Around age 25 the first aging signs start to appear on our skin and become more visible and noticeable over time. If you notice some of these, it's time to upgrade or incorporate an anti-aging beauty routine:
Wrinkles and Fine Lines
The first and most apparent skin aging sign is the formation of wrinkles. They come in many different forms - fine lines, crow's feet, marionette lines, gravitational folds, nasolabial folds, forehead lines, expression and frown lines, neck and decollete wrinkles, etc. Wrinkles are the primary subsequent cause of low collagen and elastin production and need serious anti-aging skincare and lifestyle routine to diminish their depth and visibility.
Sagging skin and loss of contour
Sagging skin is the next most common aging sign. The loss of elasticity due to the aging process and drop of functional elastin, causes the skin to sag and loosen the face contour. Skin sagging forms mainly around the jawline, mouth and eyes, making the face look tired and old-looking.
Dull skin and lost radiance
The glowing, dewy skin of youth slowly fades with age, resulting in a dulled and gray complexion due to the depleted hydration levels in the skin, as well as exposure to oxidative stress. Dullness can be easily reversed with the right brightening and moisture-retaining ingredients.
The appearance of skin pigmentation is a great aging concern, as it is hard to fade and you have to constantly protect and take care of your skin, so that it doesn't reappear or spread on a bigger surface. Age spots, sun spots, melasma, etc. are all types of skin pigmentation, formed as a result of UV damage, hormonal imbalance or the natural aging process. Any irregular skin pigmentation is a sign of skin damage and premature aging.
As the skin ages, its ability to hold onto moisture decreases, so with age it becomes dryer. Dehydration, dry patches and fine lines can become visible on the face, so internal and external hydration is key to escape the dry skin. Aging dry skin needs regular topical application of moisture-balancing and replumping ingredients to maintain a fresh, dewy and supple complexion.
Rough Skin Texture and Visible Pores
With the maturing of the skin, changes of its texture become more noticeable - loss of firmness, more visible pores, the youthful and baby-soft smoothness is replaced by bumpy and uneven surface, due to slowed cell turnover and gravity pull by the collagen and elastin drop.
Uneven Skin Tone and Thinning Skin
The skin tone and overall complexion may become uneven with age, as the skin starts to harbor more melanin in certain places than others, as a result of hormonal changes or environmental damage. As the skin ages, it also gets thinner and with visible blood vessels, giving the skin an aged look.
In our next installment - Part 2 - we'll cover a bit more on skin aging - including our top tips on how to slow down and prevent aging as much as possible. In the meantime, check out our online store at essenceofargan.com and grab your Argan Oil skincare to combat aging! Browse our Bundle section to get a better deal and order yours TODAY!