10 Daily Routines That Can Hamper Your Anti-Aging Efforts
Your skin is a sign of your age, and how you care for your skin is all up to you. There are some routines in your daily life that aren’t helping your skin to look its best. Maintaining youthful skin requires more than just a few fancy or expensive skin care creams on your vanity shelf. A more holistic approach is required to retain beautiful looking skin — because everything in your body is connected. Having just a few bad habits can take its toll on your appearance, causing premature aging, fine lines, uneven skin tone, and deeper wrinkles. Nevertheless, there are steps you can take to protect your skin from aging so as to maintain and acquire more youthful looking skin. Here are 10 common practices to avoid, steps that can hamper your anti-aging efforts.
Not Wearing Sunscreen
Every dermatologists will tell you that your best line of defense against aging is wearing sunscreen on a daily basis. If you aren’t incorporating an SPF of at least 30 into your morning routine, your skin is going to age much more quickly. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, sunscreen will undoubtedly prevent the signs of aging skin. Sunscreen also helps to prevent skin cancer — in fact, it is estimated that 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime. Aside from that alarming statistic, wearing sunscreen every day will simply protect your skin from incidental sun exposure. Your skin is exposed to the sun when you get in and out of the car and when you drive or walk from place to place. So, protect yourself. When you are going to be outside and exposed to direct sunlight, reapply sunscreen often and bump up your sun protection factor to at least a 50.
Going to Bed Without Washing Your Face
Going to bed without washing your face is a lazy habit. When you wear makeup each day and when you go about your normal activities, dirt, oil, and bacteria naturally build up on your skin. Effectively, you have to commit to removing all that buildup each night, so your skin can breathe and rebuild itself. When you don’t wash your face before bed, you clog your pores, and you inhibit your skin’s renewal process. Use the right cleanser and rinse your face well at night so as to remove all traces of makeup. Don’t skimp on the time you take to cleanse your face. Not washing your face properly can cause dehydration and the appearance of fine lines.
Frequenting Tanning Salons
The tanning salon is not your friend. Artificial UVA rays cause premature aging. Don’t believe anyone who claims that tanning lotions will protect you from artificial UV rays. And don’t be fooled by high-tech tanning beds that are supposed to work faster than others. They just use more powerful skin-killing artificial UV rays. In the long run, they produce wrinkles. Anti-aging practice begins by avoiding tanning beds like the plague.
Your skin’s barrier layer is important to its health. While some exfoliation does help with cell turnover, too much is going to cause your skin problems. Fine lines and skin inflammation can occur from harsh, daily exfoliation. So, exfoliate no more than three times a week, and, when you exfoliate, use a gentle scrub. Also, ease up on the use of sonic, vibrating cleansing devices. Those can be too harsh on your skin as well — especially if the bristles aren’t made for sensitive skin.
Chronic dehydration can lead to premature aging. Sometimes products that you use contain harsh ingredients that can actually harm your skin. Look out for skin care products that have a high alcohol content. When people have oily skin, they might go to great lengths to dry it up, but actually end up damaging their skin in the process. Whatever your skin type — whether you have skin that is sensitive or dry or oily or something in between — make sure to use gentle products that are effective. Also, look for all-natural products that contain few ingredients. Look for products that are fragrance-free, and get rid of any products containing parabens or sulfates. Parabens and sulfates are far too harsh on the skin. They break down its natural defenses. So, make your anti-aging efforts effective by having the right skin care regimen.
The Wrong Diet
Not only do the products that you put on your skin affect the health of your skin, but also what you ingest and the diet you maintain are important factors that affect the look of your skin. Proper nutrition makes a significant contribution to the health of your skin. When you get all the right vitamins and minerals from a natural diet that is rich in fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins, then you are giving your skin a gift. Fighting against aging skin is much easier with proper nutrition.
Too Much Alcohol
Alcohol is a skin dehydrator. Continuous and excessive drinking can cause your skin to age faster. Follow the guidelines that the Mayo Clinic outlines for how to moderately consume alcohol. Your skin will be much better off in the long run, looking more youthful and radiant, by lessening your alcohol consumption.
Not Enough Sleep
Your skin renews itself every night. If you skimp on sleep all the time, you aren’t doing your body or skin any favors. Getting your “beauty sleep” is a necessity. Try to get at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep every night.
A Smoking Habit
Are people still smoking? Luckily, smoking isn’t as prevalent as it used to be, which should help the health of this generation’s skin. Smoking causes lines around the mouth, generated from the repetitive and daily inhalation of smoke. Smoking, over time, also causes your skin to become chronically dehydrated. It displaces oxygen and, so, decreases the amount of oxygen your blood can carry. This can cause your skin to look discolored and dull. It also depletes your skin’s ability to absorb some vitamins. Here’s the bottom line: You are going to look older much faster if you continue to smoke.
Exercise is a beautiful gift for your skin. By exercising, you will notice immediate effects to the health of your skin. Exercise increases the skin’s circulation, which is beneficial to its health, increasing blood flow to nourish skin cells. The activity strengthens the skin and wards off signs of aging. There are so many disadvantages to a sedentary life. If you have to sit in an office all day at work, make sure to stand up at least every hour and walk around for five minutes. Take your lunch break outside and take a power walk for thirty minutes when you have the opportunity.