Anxiously awaiting your first wrinkles? First of all, you’re not alone – anti-aging products dominate the whole cosmetics market! If you’re hoping to eternally preserve your 20-year-old face, you should give up now: this battle is already lost. However, delaying the onset of your first wrinkles is totally possible! Without surgery or magic, but by adopting good habits sufficiently early.
Your first wrinkles, inevitable marks of time
Who’s responsible for these indelible folds on the surface of our skin? Time, which degrades the structure of our skin.
Two proteins form the primary fibres of our conjunctive tissue and therefore our skin: collagen which gives it strength, firmness and flexibility, while elastin allows it to find its original form after having been stretched out or contracted. Thanks to these proteins, we can furrow our brow, smile, our belly can get round for nine months (or thereabouts) without shattering or stretching too thin. At least, for a while…
Because, from the age of 25, our collagen production begins to slow down: the cells which produce it, fibroblasts, become fewer in number and less active. Concerning elastin, the situation is even worse: our stock of elastin, which is complete at puberty, doesn’t renew itself. Oh yes, the aging process starts early! At the same time, our cellular renewal slows down, our blood vessels become less efficient in supplying blood to our skin and our sebum production drops off. Our skin becomes finer, dries out, and copes worse with aggressions and stretching. It all comes together to ensure that all of our repeated movements leave their mark. Hello frown lines and crows feet: you’ve got yourself your first wrinkle.
The primary culprit of the aging process? Free radicals which deteriorate proteins and lipids, and our cells, which they oxidise. To begin with, this is a completely normal process: free radicals are waste products of the oxygen that is absorbed by our cells, they appear as soon as we breathe. And they’re useful: they eliminate our defective cells. Loaded with antioxidants, our organism neutralises them. But numerous external sources also bombard us with free radicals and, with time, our defence mechanisms break down. Uh oh.. They take over, our cells drop in number. This is what we call oxidative stress, like a rust that overwhelms our body.
6 tips to grow old with grace
On our skin, the effects of aging manifest fairly early and are fairly visible. For the most part, there’s not a whole lot you can do: it comes down to the genetic lottery. Women with fair and dry skin are distinctly disadvantaged. And even if it is possible to slow them down, wrinkles are still going to appear on your face whether you like it or not.
So why fight it? Because today’s society values having a youthful appearance for as long as possible? Yes, but it’s not only that. Beyond the aging of our skin, the decline of our collagen affects all of our conjunctive tissues: tendons, muscles, and organs. The oxidisation of our cells isn’t only responsible for our wrinkles, but is also the cause of numerous diseases understood to be degenerative: cataracts, Alzheimers, Parkinsons, arthritis… It’s not just an aesthetic matter, but a case of really getting older better. With a regime that’s pretty easy to put into practice: you protect free radicals and stimulate the production of collagen.
1. Care and moderation when it comes to sun exposure
We need the sun. For our skin and for our health: without UV rays, our levels of vitamin D will take a toll. But the number 1 culprit for premature wrinkles is these very same UV rays! UVA and UVB are super oxidising and destructors of collagen and elastin. In short, we protect ourselves and make the most of the sun in moderation. It’s equally important to be wearing your sunglasses, even in winter, as soon as it’s really light outside: squinting your eyes too much might lead to crows feet.
2. A lifestyle that prevents free radicals
Some habits encourage skin aging just as much as time. Smoking destroys your fibroblasts and prematurely develops wrinkles around the mouth. Smoke and alcohol, extremely oxidising, destroy the vitamin C that is crucial for the synthesis of collagen, dry out the skin and reduce blood flow. Caffeine abuse isn’t advisable either: it dries the skin, disrupts sleep and stimulates cortisol production, the stress hormone. Tiredness and stress also affect our elastin and our skin’s general health. Sleep is crucial to delaying the onset of wrinkles: cell renewal is nocturnal! Everything that improves your sleep’s quality is good to do: yoga, meditation, going for daily walks, changing your bedding… And sport? It’s all a question of quantity – if excessive, it’s a source of free radicals but 2 or 3 sessions a week will boost collagen.
3. A rejuvenating diet
Every season offers precious nutrients to help fight off wrinkles. Vitamin A, sulphur and copper boost collagen production. Vitamin E, lycopene, and beta-carotene are excellent antioxidants. The most crucial element? Vitamin C which works in both ways. Feast on fresh fruit and vegetables: citrus fruits, kiwis, broccoli, spinach, beans, cabbage, garlic, aubergines, olives, tomatoes, strawberries, beetroot, carrots… Ideally organic, to avoid pesticides and oxidising heavy metals. According to your dietary preferences, put offal and seafood on the menu, as well as nuts and seeds, complete grains and legumes.
In order for these nutrients to circulate in your body, don’t bypass good lipids, fatty fish and high-quality oils. They also protect skin cell membranes and reinforce the elasticity of the skin. Finally, drink lots: water, herbal teas, antioxidizing green tea. Dehydration is harmful to your elastin levels.
As for the ‘don’t’s’, watch out for refined sugars and flours, which are almost as harmful to the skin as tobacco. They cling to the collagen fibres and the elastin which lose their flexibility and cease renewing. The wrinkles then appear and get deeper. Yikes.
4. A thorough routine tailored to your skin
Once the first wrinkles have appeared, the degradation of the skin structure is already quite advanced. In order to delay them, you should adopt a thorough skincare routine, as early as possible.
Clean your skin thoroughly and gently, morning and especially in the evening, even if you don’t wear makeup. In order to get rid of all the toxins which oxidise it, and to support cell renewal. Get rid of everything that, by stripping down the hydrolipid film, exposes your skin to free radicals: sulfuric cleansers, conventional cosmetics packed with synthetic conservators and fragrances. Limit how much you wash your face with hard water.
Adopt good habits: apply your products in light circular motions in order to activate micro-circulation. The internet is overflowing with facial exercises that you can do to improve your face’s muscular tone and to stimulate collagen synthesis.
And most importantly, hydrate in the morning and evening, from the age of 20 onwards, depending on your skin type, to preserve its elasticity and keep your collagen and elastin in good health. A cream adapted to your skin type will give you exactly what is missing from your hydrolipid film and reinforce its resistance to oxidants.
5. Natural active ingredients that slow d0wn time
Your moisturiser can even be an indispensable weapon to fight off your first wrinkles if you choose one that is rich in two types of active ingredients: antioxidants and healthy fats. How do you get that? With plant oils! Their multitude of vitamins will fight off free radicals and really penetrate the skin, thanks to their contents of essential fatty acids that perfectly match the skin’s composition. Among the most efficient plant oil is green tea oil, with its skin-firming powers and apricot oil, with its ability to even out your complexion- as well as evening primrose, borage, and avocado oils. In particular rosehip oil, the greatest enemy of wrinkles with its high content of retinol, antioxidants, vitamin E, and fatty acids which aid collagen synthesis. Add in some essential oils – Damascus rose, blackberry, barbary fig or even centella and spirulina, which again will stimulate collagen and elastin.
At oOlution, dry, mixed or oily skin all have the right to shield themselves from free radicals: all of our face products, rich in plant oils, have an antioxidant and detoxifying effect.
6. An anti-aging product before the age
As long as our first wrinkles haven’t yet appeared, we are under the impression that our smooth and elastic skin has plenty of time to prepare for them. But you shouldn’t wait for your wrinkles to appear before integrating an anti-aging product into your routine. When should you start? It really depends! On your lifestyle, on your genetics… (Have a look at the skin of those around you to predict what might happen to yours.)
You could start by enriching your moisturiser with some natural anti-aging ingredients: a few drops of our formula of regenerating and revitalising plant oils will help your skin to fight against the effects of time. You could even use it on its own, massaging it into your skin, before your moisturiser. Then you could use Age Out, our 100% natural anti-aging cream, which will get to work overnight on all skin types. Its 65 plant-based antioxidising and anti-aging ingredients will boost cell renewal and delay the onset of wrinkles.
Of course, there’s no deal with the devil – we can’t promise your eternal youth, but rather stronger skin that will be well-equipped to resist signs of aging. A face that may have a few wrinkles here and there, but which will radiate health and wellbeing! What do you think?
This post is also available in french.