The face and hands are always exposed, which is one of the main reasons that they are the first parts of our body to show signs of ageing. Whether they are facing the cold, wind and rain of winter or the heat of the sun in summer, all types of weather can affect the skin. And it’s not just the weather; the pollution and car exhaust fumes can also play a part in ageing our skin. Lots of things accelerate the ageing process of the skin:
– Stress – signs of stress can show up on your skin, hair and nails.
– Lack of sleep – those who sleep badly can have more fine lines, uneven skin colour and slackening of the skin.
– Sun damage – the sun is responsible for most of the visible signs of skin ageing. UVA rays emitted by the sun can cause pigmentation, reduced skin elasticity through collagen and elastin breakdown, and skin-texture quality.
– Smoking – exposure to smoke, even second-hand smoke, can cause damage to the elastin fibres causing sagging to the skin, age spots and lines and wrinkles around the mouth.
– Pollution and the environment – can cause fine lines and dark circles under the eyes. Dehydrated skin can leave the skin dry, rough and itchy and the city dust and dirt clogging up the pores can cause spots and make the skin look lifeless and dull.
One of the main things we notice as a result of normal ageing, is the loss of volume. As we age our facial fat is generally lost, causing the soft tissues to become thinner. Collagen; the dense fibres for strength, and elastin; the elastic fibres for suppleness, will become less firm and elastic as we get older, allowing the soft tissue in the face to sag. This results in the face looking thinner and facial bones looking more prominent.
– The cheeks – there’s less production of collagen and elastin meaning that the ageing skin is vulnerable to the effects of gravity and can sag, resulting in jowls and bags under the eyes.
– The mouth – laugh lines deepen and the fine lines that surround the lips, known as smokers lines begin to show, and we lose definition resulting in lipstick bleed.
– The eyes – the upper and lower eyes begin to sag, creating dark circles and tear troughs.
– Facial thread veins – the blood vessels in ageing thin skin are more likely to break, bruise or become permanently dilated, causing thread veins.
– Age spots – these occur when the pigment cells in the skin increase in certain areas and cluster together, resulting in sun spots, freckles or liver spots.
– The forehead – gains wrinkles and furrows through repetitive facial expression movements, made over time.
– The skin – generalised wrinkling of the face may occur because of thinning ageing skin. Reduced skin cell turnover will result in thinner crepe like skin. More mature skin, also has fewer sweat and oil glands, therefore it’s prone to dryness.
Reputable cosmetic clinics offer the latest, safe and effective cosmetic medical treatments for anti-ageing of the skin. A little wrinkle, a bit of sagging or dark circle might be making you look older than you really are, but an experienced and fully trained practitioner can help you choose from a variety of treatments, products and recommend which treatment is suitable for your concerns. (By Mags Whyler)