One thing we’ll never be able to escape is the natural aging process, which is likely why the anti-aging market continues to grow every year (1). Unfortunately, as we get older the skin begins to lose moisture and volume, becoming thinner and drier. This process is signified by the presence of wrinkles and fine lines.
That said, it should be noted that while we can’t prevent aging, we can, however, prevent premature aging.
Aside from the passing days, a lot of other factors can cause our skin to age. However, by taking preventive action, we can take control and influence how well the skin ages. In addition to adjusting lifestyle factors, there are also a few beauty hacks that have stood the test of time. In fact, these hacks and have been proven to provide anti-aging benefits.
That said, here are 10 golden beauty rules that you should always follow. These rules will help your skin age as gracefully as possible.
10 Anti-Aging Beauty Rules
Rule #1: Always use sunscreen
Yes, the sun is the best source of vitamin D which can provide a number of benefits. However, overexposure to the sun can cause sun damage, which can lead to premature aging and wrinkles.
That said, research published in the Annals of Internal Medicine journal suggested that the regular use of sunscreen would help to slow down aging skin.
So, when choosing a sunscreen, it’s important to select a broad-spectrum product, with an SPF of 30 and above. A broad-spectrum product will help protect the skin from both UVA and UVB sun damage. UVA rays are responsible for causing wrinkles and UVB rays cause sunburns and skin cancer.
It’s important to remember that even if it’s cloudy, you should always wear sunscreen. This is because UV rays can still pass through the clouds. Additionally, for extra sun protection, invest in a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses that have UV protection.
What’s more, there are also certain foods that can offer protection from the sun’s harmful rays. These foods include blueberries, almonds, as well as carrots.
Rule #2: Use a gentle cleanser
Cleansing is an important process as it helps to remove dirt and bacteria from the skin, some of which can contribute to aging. Now while cleansing your face is an important process, it’s important not to overdo it.
Scrubbing harshly over-cleansing the skin can lead to irritation, and irritated skin can speed up the aging process. That said, it’s important to use a gentle cleanser as well as a gentle method when cleansing the skin. Also, you should select a cleanser that’s free of any ingredients that may serve to irritate the skin. These include fragrances, sulfates, and parabens. In fact, both sulfates and parabens have each been linked to hormonal disruptions so it’s best to just stay clear of either ingredient (2).
Rule #3: Don’t forget to exfoliate
The skin renews itself every 28 days, removing dead skin cells and making way for new ones. However, the rate at which the skin regenerates itself slows down as we grow older. This then results in a dull appearance, accompanied by dry and rough patches.
Consequently, it soon becomes our responsibility to encourage this process, especially if we want younger-looking and smoother skin.
In terms of the process, there are two forms of exfoliation: physical and chemical exfoliation. Physical exfoliation uses particles to do away with dead skin cells, whereas chemical exfoliation relies on chemical ingredients such as fruit enzymes and face acids to break down the bond between the dead skin cells.
Physical exfoliates are often the preferred method as they are less irritating on the skin. That said, when choosing a physical exfoliator, ensure that it does not list microbeads as an ingredient as these have been found to be quite harmful to the environment and marine life (3).
Rule #4: Moisturize
As mentioned, the levels of moisture in our skin decrease as we age. Therefore, it’s important to invest in a moisturizer that will help to replenish your face and reduce the risk of wrinkles and fine lines.
That said, when choosing a moisturizer, it’s important to choose a product that contains ingredients that will not only hydrate the face but will also provide additional skin benefits. These ingredients include:
- Hyaluronic acid – also found in many skincare products, hyaluronic acid has been found to hydrate the skin and prevent the formation of wrinkles.
- Vitamin C – vitamin C helps to protect the skin from sun damage, thus preventing the formation of wrinkles. It also stimulates the production of collagen, which then helps to maintain a youthful and supple appearance.
- Ceramides – ceramides not only help to restore moisture to the skin, but they also strengthen the skin’s barrier, thus protecting it from the aging effects of environmental pollutants.
Rule #5: Use an eye cream
The skin around the eyes is the most sensitive, and this, unfortunately, makes it more sensitive to aging. As a result, the area around the eye is often the first to show signs of aging. So, if you’re not already using eye cream (you should have started at the age of 25), then it’s important to immediately start.
It’s advisable that both hyaluronic acid and ceramides are present in your eye cream as this will help to prevent loss of moisture as well as the formation of crow’s feet.
When applying eye cream, it’s important to do so as the final step in your skincare routine. In regards to how to apply it, you should only up a small amount of eye cream on your finger. After this, lightly dot it on from the inner to the outer corners of your eye area. You should then use your finger pads to lightly pat the eye cream so that it’s fully absorbed.
Rule #6: Use a retinoid
Retinoids (or retinol) are skincare ingredients that have been derived from vitamin A and are regularly used in a number of anti-aging products due to their effectiveness (4).
So what makes retinoids so special? Well, according to research published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, retinoids have been found to boost collagen production, encourage the creation of new blood vessels in the skin, and alleviate the appearance of age spots – all of which help to improve the skin’s overall appearance.
That said, as retinoids are so strong, they can cause a bit of skin dryness and irritation. Therefore, it’s important to consult your dermatologist so that then test your skin’s tolerance. Also, it is advisable to only use a retinoid every other day instead of daily.
Rule #7: Always remove your make up
It may be hard to do after a long and trying day at the office, but you should never go to bed without taking off your makeup.
Aside from dirtying your pillowcase, going to bed with a full face of makeup can cause clogged pores, which can also accelerate the aging process. Additionally, it can also lead to cracked lips and irritation around the eye area. That said, you can either use organic micellar water or a gentle cleanser to help remove your make-up and other impurities.
Rule #8: Use a night cream
Sleep is the body’s opportunity to repair itself, and this also includes your skin. Throughout the day, your skin has come into contact with various elements, some of which may cause it to age, so it’s important to give it a chance to recover and repair itself.
One of the best ways to do this would be by investing in a night cream, as it will help the skin’s recovery process throughout the night. That said, it’s important to select a night cream that contains ingredients that will help to boost hydration, as well as encourage skin renewal and the production of collagen. These ingredients include hyaluronic acid, ceramides, vitamin C as well as retinoids.
Rule #9: Get plenty of beauty sleep
As mentioned, sleep is the body’s opportunity to repair itself and the term beauty sleep does have plenty of truth to it.
Aside from an increased risk of heart disease and depression, not getting adequate hours of sleep can also cause the skin to age. That said, it’s important to get at least 8 hours of sleep to provide anti-aging benefits. This is because it allows the skin to repair itself, leaving a much fresher and youthful appearance.
The position to which you sleep, according to a study published in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal, can also affect how your skin ages. The study suggested that sleeping on your stomach or side may speed up the formation wrinkles, therefore it’s advisable to sleep on your back, and on a silk pillowcase as they cause less friction.
Rule #10: Eat for your skin
You are what you eat and so is your skin. Therefore, you can spend all your time and energy making sure to follow the above rules, but if you don’t eat for your skin, then you’re really doing it for nothing. As research published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology found a strong correlation between dietary habits and the formation of wrinkles, it’s clear that what you choose to eat is just as important as what you choose to use on your skin.
So, which foods should you avoid if you want your skin to age gracefully? Well, red meats, refined grains, and processed foods can each lead to premature aging due to their inflammatory properties. It’s also important to watch your alcohol intake as overconsumption can dehydrate the skin, leading to an aged appearance.
Therefore, it’s important to consume foods that are not only anti-inflammatory but also contain antioxidant properties which will help to protect against skin damage, as well as improve the skin’s appearance by improving its elasticity and suppleness.
Omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamins A, C, and E are each found in anti-inflammatory foods and they’ve each been proven to contain anti-aging properties. The compounds can be found in avocadoes, blueberries, salmon, as well as various nuts and seeds.
At the end of the day, aging is an inevitable part of life, but there are easy and simple anti-aging rules you can follow to help ensure that you age gracefully, without a wrinkle in sight.
Anson G., Kane,M., Lambros V., (2016), Sleep Wrinkles: Facial Aging and Facial Distortion During Sleep, Aesthetic Surgery Journal, Volume 36, Issue 8, Pages 931–940, https://doi.org/10.1093/asj/sjw074
Engeli, R. T., Rohrer, S. R., Vuorinen, A., Herdlinger, S., et al. (2017). Interference of Paraben Compounds with Estrogen Metabolism by Inhibition of 17β-Hydroxysteroid Dehydrogenases. International journal of molecular sciences, 18(9), 2007. https://doi:10.3390/ijms18092007
Ganceviciene, R., Liakou, A. I., Theodoridis, A., Makrantonaki, E., & Zouboulis, C. C. (2012). Skin anti-aging strategies. Dermato-endocrinology, 4(3), 308–319. https://doi:10.4161/derm.22804
Hughes, M.C., Williams, G., Baker, P., Green, A., (2013). Sunscreen and Prevention of Skin Aging A Randomized Trial. Annals of internal medicine. 158. 781-90. https://doi:10.7326/0003-4819-158-11-201306040-00002
Jegasothy, S. M., Zabolotniaia, V., & Bielfeldt, S. (2014). Efficacy of a New Topical Nano-hyaluronic Acid in Humans. The Journal of clinical and aesthetic dermatology, 7(3), 27–29.
Kong, R., Cui, Y., Fisher, G., et al, (2015). A comparative study of the effects of retinol and retinoic acid on histological, molecular, and clinical properties of human skin. Journal of cosmetic dermatology. 15. https://doi:10.1111/jocd.12193.
Mekic, S., Jacobs, L., Hamer, M., et al, (2018). A healthy diet in women is associated with less facial wrinkles in a large Dutch population-based cohort. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 80. https://doi:10.1016/j.jaad.2018.03.033.