Skin Care for Aging Skin
Your skin naturally changes as you age. I’ve noticed I need to moisturize my skin much more than I did in my 20’s and 30’s. Mine has become much drier with age, and it’s a change significant enough that I pay attention. I’ve also noticed that the growing crease between my eyebrows is growing ever more prevalent than before. It’s definitely changed the way I look, and I’m not sure how I feel about it. Does this sound familiar? We all experience a difference in our skin the older we get, and skin care becomes a greater concern for us all. Let’s take a look at the best ways we can care for aging skin, so that we can enjoy a beautiful, supple glow now, and for many years to come.
Why and how does our skin change as we age?
Once we pass our 20th year, our skin declines in its production of collagen, creating 1% less with each year that passes. Our skin ages internally, a natural part of growing older, and it also ages due to external factors, such as sun damage, environmental toxins, and smoking, for example.
Intrinsically, we lose elasticity, as there’s less elastin production going on. Our sweat glands and oil glands don’t function quite as well either. And wrinkles inevitably form, which differs from one person to the next. Those extrinsic factors play a part in just how much your skin will wrinkle, how many sunspots you develop, and whether or not skin cancer needs to be addressed.
The more damage we have from external factors, the more we’re going to develop uneven skin tone, rough skin, and deep, deep wrinkles, brown patches, and thinner skin all around. This is why it’s important to take the necessary steps to reduce the likelihood of these skin issues from happening in the first place, or at the very least, becoming a problem. So, let’s talk about skin care and how that changes as we age. And let’s learn what actionable steps actually work, when it comes to caring for our skin in a totally natural way.
What’s collagen got to do with it?
Collagen has a lot to do with it, actually. It’s an essential protein, and one that our body naturally makes less of as we get older. This protein is a major player when it comes to skin care and aging. Probably the most important one, in fact. It’s absolutely necessary in keeping various parts of the body strong and healthy—namely, our nails, skin, cartilage, muscles, and joints. But, since we’re focusing on skin care and aging, let’s delve deeper into this topic, and how it relates to collagen.
When it comes to skin care, collagen is the most important protein. Ample amounts of collagen in the body helps prevent wrinkling of the skin, as well as fine lines and even saggy skin. Collagen gives the skin its suppleness and elasticity. It makes the skin look youthful and glowing. Studies have shown how and why collagen keeps the skin young. Here’s one study, published in Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, which relates to collagen and skin care.
How do we promote skin care and skin health with collagen?
Some people use collagen serums, creams, and lotions on their skin. This is a topical method, that might do some good, but not as much as taking collagen orally. Using collagen topically is helpful but limited, because it travels through just the superficial layers of skin. Consuming collagen, however, is going to be more effective because it travels to the deepest skin layers.
Studies like this one, published in the Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, will help you understand why it’s important to take collagen orally. We can do this in two steps. The first step has to do with supplementation. Taking a high-quality collagen supplement is one of the most effective things you can do to prevent premature skin aging. The next thing you can do is eat foods that contain collagen, or that help the body make collagen.
But, why is this so important when it comes to the aging process? Well, like many other aspects of the body, we make less collagen the older we get. This makes our skin a prime candidate for loss of elasticity. We’re more apt to get crow’s feet, fine lines around the mouth, sagginess, and wrinkles on our forehead. The natural side effects of aging can be aggravating, especially for those of us passionate about aging gracefully. Discomforts arise for us all, which helps us remember that we’re only human. And we need to accept ourselves just as we are, especially as we age.
Lucky for us, there are so many ways to care for our skin. And most of them are really quite easy. Some are even fun! Let’s take a look at the most effective ways to protect our skin from premature damage, and promote collagen production in the process.
Natural ways to care for aging skin
So many natural ways of caring for our skin abound. All we need to do is integrate these healthy habits into our lives, and let our bodies do the rest! First, we’ll look at the top collagen -rich foods. Then, we’ll take a look at some easy ways to ensure we care for our skin in the best way possible as we age. There’s a lot we can do to nourish our skin, and it’s really not that difficult. It just takes a bit of care and attention.
The best foods you can eat to support collagen production and skin health
Bone broth is one of the best sources of collagen because it takes the collagen from the bones of the animal you’re working with. It promotes good health in many ways, including the health of aging skin.
Beef has a fair amount of zinc, as well as amino acids, both of which are essential for the production of collagen. I like to eat beef in moderation, and certainly not daily.
You’ll also want to eat plenty of broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and any other cruciferous veggie. They’re all rich in vitamin C, and vitamin C is necessary for our body to make collagen.
Berries are full of vitamin C, and vitamin C is probably the most essential vitamin when it comes to the production of collagen. Contrary to popular belief, strawberries have more vitamin C than oranges. What’s more, the ellagic acid found in berries may help protect the skin from UV rays. Not bad for a tasty treat, huh?
Citrus fruits and tropical fruits
Citrus and tropical fruits are full of vitamin C, which is a precursor to collagen production in the body. So eat plenty of them, which also boosts your immune system and helps keep you immune to viruses.
The skin of chicken is full of collagen. When seasoned right, it’s also incredibly tasty. I like to eat chicken once or twice a week to reap its collagen benefits.
Eggs whites contain proline, an amino acid essential for collagen production. Eat a couple daily to boost collagen production.
Fish and shellfish are naturally full of collagen. Eat the skin of fish, which is where the collagen lives.
Beans and lentils
The amino acids found in beans and lentils lend themself to collagen synthesis. Their copper content helps support collagen production. So eat these protein-packed foods as often as possible for supple skin as you age.
Red Bell peppers
Red bell peppers are full of vitamin C, which is essential for collagen synthesis. Eat them often to help boost your anti-aging powers.
Tomatoes contain lycopene, an antioxidant that helps support skin health. Eat a ripe tomato each day for glowing skin!
I love garlic because it’s so good fo you and your. Garlic contains sulfur, which prevents the breakdown of collagen. Eat a little garlic daily for beautiful skin.
Oysters are high in copper, and copper is necessary for collagen production. Eat your oysters to help prevent premature aging!
Throw out the refined sugars
Consuming refined sugars sabotages your body’s natural ability to produce collagen. Eating processed sugars also contributes to inflammation in the body, which leads to a treasure trove of diseases. Throw out these fake sugars and see your skin look far more youthful than before!
Stop eating hydrogenated oils
Hydrogenated oils are a lot like refined sugars when it comes to skin health. They too, get in the way of collagen production. Eat healthy oils like coconut oil, avocado oil, and extra-virgin olive oil for supple, glowing skin.
Stop with the tobacco
If you’re a smoker, do whatever you can to stop. Chronic smoking ages your skin prematurely. It makes the skin look dull over the long-term, and contributes to more wrinkling and a sallow complexion. Not too mention, it’s just downright bad for your overall health. Kick the habit for good if you want beautiful, glowing skin.
Protect your skin from sun damage
We all know that sun does serious damage to our skin over the long-term. If you’re not in the habit of protecting your skin with a natural sunscreen, start now. There are plenty of chemical-free sunscreens on the market today, and I encourage you to use one daily to prevent premature aging.
All those days in the sun spent squinting contributes to wrinkles in your older years. To prevent those wrinkles, simply get into the habit of wearing sunglasses whenever you go outside (unless it’s dark). You’ll make less of those facial expressions that lead to wrinkles. Plus, you’ll be protecting your eyes, too!
Daily exercise contributes to skin health as we age. The more we exercise, the more we boost our immune function, and improve circulation. Healthy circulation is essential for a youthful glow.
Drink a little less alcohol
We all love our red wine, don’t we? Unfortunately, alcohol does nothing for our skin health. In fact, it dehydrates the skin, contributing to skin damage and premature aging. If you’re going to drink, alternate with water to rehydrate.
Our skin needs clean water to maintain its youthful glow. Dehydration leads to premature aging, whereas staying hydrated throughout your life supports skin health. Make sure you drink 810 (8-ounce) glasses of water each day. Do whatever it takes to keep you on track. I like filling a large, beautiful water bottle and sipping on it intermittently throughout the day. If I exercise vigorously, I drink even more. And you should too. Hydration is key when it comes to gorgeous skin!
Create a natural skin care cleansing, toning, and moisturizing routine
I typically cleanse, tone, and moisturize my skin twice daily. The products I use are made from very few ingredients. And all the ingredients are natural. They don’t irritate my skin at all. Rather, my skin looks more youthful after I use them, and they’re well worth the extra dollar spent. If you want to care for your face the way I do, spend a little more on the all-natural skin care products. And get rid of the cheap stuff.
To sum it all up
It’s never too late to begin caring for your skin. You may have developed bad habits over the years like smoking, eating processed foods, not drinking enough water, drinking too much alcohol, or not protecting yourself from the sun. But, make positive changes now, and you’ll be surprised how fast your skin responds.
The best things to do are the simplest. Eat plenty of the foods listed above, and make a shopping checklist to have with you whenever you go shopping. Wear a natural sunscreen daily, and eliminate the foods, drinks, and tobacco products that damage the skin. Drink plenty of water and teas, and enjoy a skin care ritual with all-natural cleansers, toners, and moisturizers.