8 tips to keep your skin firm
If you’re anything like me, you’re not exactly losing sleep over your skin ageing. After all, if Helen Mirren can embrace her wrinkles, so can we!
On the other hand, I can empathise with those who feel tempted to slow the process a little bit.
The problem is, there are a helluva lot of bizarre beauty gimmicks and anti-ageing hype floating around – enough to leave us feeling very confused about what works and what doesn’t.
To make things clearer, here are the latest findings on the ingredients, nutrients and daily habits that have been proven to help your skin stay firm as you age…
1. Embrace retinol
As far as anti-ageing ingredients go, retinol is one of the few that most dermatologists agree actually works. A pure form of vitamin A, it helps boost cell renewal and turnover, as well as stimulate the production of collagen and elastin (which play a key role in keeping skin firm). Non-prescription retinol-based products may take up to six months to start working, so persistence is key. Try AWE Cosmeceuticals codayati Renewal System, which contains one per cent pure retinol.
2. Wear sunglasses
Having a hat and/or large pair of sunglasses on hand is a sure-fire way to keep your skin looking firmer for longer. Why? The sun is pretty much your skin's worst enemy, with long-term exposure causing collagen to break down at a faster rate than normal. Sagging skin aside, excessive sun exposure can also result in skin pigmentation (not to mention skin cancer), which means there’s no excuse not to cover up that complexion.
Image credit: @chrissyteigen Instagram
3. Get serious about sunscreen
As well as a hat and sunnies, sunscreen is a scientifically proven must for women who want youthful, sag-free skin. Look for a broad-spectrum formula containing Helioplex or Mexoryl to protect against both harmful UVA and UVB rays. Try one of our SPF products your skin will love, which are formulated especially for your face (so you won’t get that greasy feeling)!
4. Up your antioxidants
Antioxidants protect your skin from harmful environmental factors – also known as free radicals – and block an enzyme called elastase (which breaks down skin elastin). According to New York City dermatologist Dr Howard Sobel, they “often work best in synergy”, so look for products that contain several different ones (such as vitamin A, vitamin C and coenzyme Q10). RACINNE Ultimate Defense Illuminating Cream gets our members’ seal of approval!
5. Always moisturise
Moisturiser isn’t just good for keeping your skin soft and smooth – it also helps protect it against those nasty free radicals. Speaking to allure.com before his death last year, the late dermatologist Dr Fredric Brandt warned that, "Without moisture, your skin isn't able to repair itself and suffers even more damage" – so look for products containing the best hydrating ingredients, including ceramides, essential fatty acids, and niacinamide. Thursday Plantation 100% Pure Certified Organic Rosehip Oil is packed with potent nutrients for an extra hit of hydration.
6. Don’t neglect your neck
Much like our complexions, the skin in our neck area is at risk of sagging as we age. To combat this, extend your moisturiser and SPF to your neck and décolletage area. Neck exercises can also be effective. For best results, sit up straight and tilt your head back until you feel a slight stretch at the front of the neck. Hold for five seconds, release, then repeat 10 times. This will help keep muscles firm as well as fight the pull of gravity.
7. Eat face firming foods
Try to include lots of antioxidants in your diet for added skin firming benefits. Naturopath, nutritionist and herbalist Cassie Mendoza-Jones recommends to, “Eat foods high in vitamin C such as broccoli, berries and citrus fruits, foods high in selenium such as Brazil nuts, foods high in vitamin E such as almonds, egg yolk, hazelnuts, sunflower seeds, and foods high in omega-3 essential fatty acids such as oily fish...” You can also supplement your diet with an age-defying beauty drink such as Thalgo Collagen – Booster Beauty Elixir.
8. Reduce your sugar intake
Many experts believe that overindulging in sugar (which includes corn syrup, dextrose, and fruit-juice concentrate) can prematurely age skin. Why? Well, sugar in the bloodstream forms harmful molecules called advanced glycation end products (or, appropriately enough, AGEs). AGEs have been shown to weaken collagen and elastin – so put down the lolly bag!
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