How to Keep Your Skin Firm as You Age
Along with wrinkles and fine lines, saggy skin is an age-related concern on many people’s minds.
This loss of definition can happen almost anywhere on the body, but the most common areas are the face, neck, abdomen, and arms.
Sagging skin is caused by several factors, including thinning of the epidermis (the surface of the skin) and collagen loss.
This article takes a look at why skin sags and includes information on how you can firm up your skin as you age. Get ready to turn back the clock.
What causes the skin to sag as we age?
Aging has become synonymous with sagging, and these reasons explain why.
Loss of collagen
Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body and is found in the bones, joints, and tendons.
It’s also what keeps the skin youthful by providing structure to the dermis, the thickest layer of the skin.
As you get older, the body loses collagen naturally. By extension, this includes elastin, another protein responsible for keeping the skin firm and tight.
Loose skin from weight loss
If you’ve lost weight, you may be left with loose skin. This is because skin expands as the body gains weight.
One studyTrusted Source found that when a person has carried around more weight for some time, it can damage the skin’s collagen and elastin fibers.
This affects the skin’s ability to snap back into place after weight loss. The same thing happens during pregnancy, when the skin expands over the abdomen.
Since loose skin can dramatically affect a person’s self-esteem, many people choose to undergo excess skin removal surgery. Some common procedures include abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) and mastopexy (breast lift).
Years of sun exposure
The sun plays a huge role in premature signs of aging.
A studyTrusted Source including 298 Caucasian women from the ages 30 to 78 found that ultraviolet exposure is responsible for 80 percent of visible facial aging signs.
This includes wrinkles, vascular disorders, and sagging skin.
These rays both damage and break down the skin’s elastin over time, leading to premature sagging.
Years of sun exposure can even cause thinning of the epidermis, the outermost layer of the skin.
Besides the sun, the skin is exposed to other free radicals outside that can deteriorate the collagen and elastin fibers. This includes toxins, pollutants, and even the food you’re consuming.
Are there nonsurgical ways to reverse this process?
Combating sagging doesn’t have to take place in a doctor’s office. There are many things you can try at home.
While you shouldn’t rely solely on firming creams, they can provide subtle differences in tightening up loose skin. Some even minimize the appearance of cellulite.
Keep in mind, however, that these results can take time. Moreover, some creams don’t provide any results.
Use the cream daily, and be sure to maintain a healthy skin routine, such as regularly wearing sunscreen.
If you want a natural facial lift, try facial exercises. You can do these at home and they don’t cost any money.
Facial exercises tone and tighten the muscles of the face using different techniques. For example, jawline exercises purportedly reduce the appearance of a double chin, which is a trouble area for some.
While there’s little clinical evidence on the effectiveness of facial exercises or “facial yoga,” more research has been emerging as of late.
For example, a study Trusted Sourcedone by Dr. Murad Alam, vice chair and professor of dermatology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, found that doing daily facial exercises had positive anti-aging results.
When doing facial exercises, you can use a jade roller to assist you.
This ancient Chinese beauty tool is said to:
- encourage lymphatic drainage
- stimulate circulation
- relax facial muscles
While there isn’t a lot of evidence to support these claims, beauty experts swear by it. Similarly, a gua sha stone is another popular beauty tool.
When it comes to improving the skin’s appearance, there are a couple of supplements that can do just that. These include:
- Collagen peptides. The market for this supplement has become popular over the past several years for a reason: It works to replenish the collagen that’s broken down in the body. You can take it in many forms, including a collagen drink. Take it daily and consistently to see results.
- Vitamin C. This powerful antioxidant repairs damaged skin cells, protects the skin from free radicals, and even assists in collagen production.