It happens to all of us. Our skin will naturally lose collagen and elastin as it ages. This leads to wrinkles and skin that looks “tired” and aging. Any additional damage, lack of maintenance of mistreatment along the way will only serve to exacerbate the process.
In addition to aging, inflammatory skin conditions are the most common problem in dermatology. Inflammation can come in many forms, from acute situations like a contusion, a scrape or a sunburn, to chronic conditions like eczema, rosacea and psoriasis. Low levels of ongoing chronic inflammation, common yet undetected in many of us, damage the skin over time by breaking down collagen and elastin fibers.
The technical term for the active offenders are matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs). These are the main extracellular matrix (ECM) enzymes in collagen degradation. They break down collagen and elastin fibers, and a key MMP responsible for skin aging is MMP9.
What Can We Do to Counter Aging and Wrinkles?
With all of these forces working against our skin, is it pre-destined that we will have wrinkled, aged-looking skin as we get older? Fortunately, the answer is no. There are new discoveries in skin care that actually repair, heal and nurture skin – even damaged and aging skin – to make it more elastic, firm and healthy. Here are a few tips to keep your skin looking younger, more vibrant and healthy:
1. Consistently apply a natural ingredient that has the ability to nourish, moisturize and reduce the effects of chronic inflammation.
This is by far the most important key to reducing aging and wrinkles. In the last twenty years, new and revolutionary plant-based botanicals have been discovered that contain the most powerful anti-inflammatory properties ever discovered.
One receiving perhaps the most buzz is from a rare Frankincense tree found only in Somalia. Its natural resin produces one of nature’s most powerful anti-inflammatory agents. Referred to as ECM9 because it inhibits the MM9s responsible for chronic skin inflammation, this natural powerhouse is exclusively found in Keprea skin care products. Products include multi-active Day Creme, Night Creme, and Concentrate Serum.
What has many so excited about this ingredient is that skin care clinical studies prove its effectiveness on skin firmness, reducing lines and wrinkles, and adding moisture to the skin.
2. Healthy Diet
Eat a healthy diet of antioxidants, lean protein and omega fatty acids (and avoid alcohol and coffee). It sounds like good health advice for all of us, and it is. But a diet high in antioxidants and omega-rich fatty acids is good for your skin. Fighting free radicals and providing your skin with healthy proteins like those found in Salmon are great, nourishing building blocks for your skin. And salmon has those omega rich fatty acids that nourish skin.
Avoid, or at least reduce, alcohol and coffee, both of which are diuretics which can deplete the body of water. Substitute with fresh pressed juices and more water to keep your entire body, including your skin, nourished and hydrated.
3. Avoid smoking and alcohol
Smoking breaks down the natural collagen in your skin. This causes skin to appear more wrinkled and less firm. Because of the breakdown of collagen, a smoker’s skin ages more quickly than non-smokers. A smokers skin is often characterized by deep wrinkles around the lips and, to a lesser degree, the eyes.
Even long-time smokers can benefit their skin by quitting. Once the Cigarette smoke is one of the main environmental factors that causes changes in the skin often associated with looking old, such as coarse wrinkling and a sallow, leathery texture,” says Matt.
4. Avoid prolonged exposure to the sun.
Prolonged exposure to sun is the leading cause of wrinkles. UV light (especially UVA light) causes ageing of the skin by breaking down the collagen and elastin the skin requires for support.
Wrinkles appear on the face, neck and on the hands more readily because the skin is thinner and has more “squeeze points” around the eyes, mouth and between fingers, and because these areas are more frequently exposed to the sun. Sun damage not only makes you look older, it is also the main cause of skin-related health issues. These provide all the more reason to apply a topical skin care product that protects and moisturizes.