With age comes experience, wisdom and beauty. We’ve entered a new age of skin care that celebrates the aging process, especially focusing on the needs of mature skin. Instead of concentrating on anti-aging, it’s time to emphasize keeping your skin healthy and radiant, no matter your age. Read on for our guide to embracing aging gracefully with skin care for mature skin.
How Skin Ages | Signs Of Aging | How To Age Gracefully
How Skin Ages
Two Aging Processes
As we get older, our bodies naturally start to age, a process called intrinsic aging. This is a continual mechanism by which our cellular and biological functions slow down. With time, the skin’s strong and flexible matrix begins to weaken and hyaluronic acid, elastin and collagen naturally deplete. Intrinsic aging accounts for only 10% of skin changes; the remaining 90% is caused by these external influences which accelerate the aging process. Our bodies are also subject to extrinsic aging, caused by exposure to environmental stressors. These include lifestyle choices like smoking, poor diet and lack of exercise as well as external factors like pollution, blue light radiation and UV rays from the sun.
How does environmental aging happen? Pollution, blue light and UV rays expose skin to free radicals. Heidi Waldorf, MD likens these highly reactive molecules to “anti-oxygen bombs that trigger inflammation and cascades of damage.” Unchecked, free radicals cause oxidative stress that damages the skin, degrades its structural proteins and leads to premature aging.
When the skin is repeatedly exposed to free radicals, a process called inflammaging can kick in. According to our Product Support Representatives: “Inflammaging is a term used to describe aging induced by chronic, persistent, underlying inflammation that ultimately exhausts the skin’s defense system. This weakens skin structure, results in the degradation of collagen and elastin and impairs the skin’s barrier function.”
Signs Of Aging
As we age, it’s normal for our years to begin to show on our faces. Here are a few signs of aging that develop due to the loss of hyaluronic acid, collagen and elastin over time.
Fine Lines And Wrinkles
Hyaluronic acid, collagen and elastin are essential components that maintain the skin’s youthful, bouncy appearance. But over time, the skin loses its ability to return to its original state. Repeated facial expressions, such as frowning and smiling, stretch the skin. Several factors contribute to this loss of resilience:
Decrease in moisture: The skin dries out and becomes less supple, making it prone to showing lines.
Reduction in structural support: As we age, substances such as collagen that give the skin support and firmness gradually diminish.
Loss of elasticity: Elastin is the protein that allows skin to stretch and snap back, and this also decreases as we age.
As a result of these changes, the skin may show permanent creases, leading to fine lines and wrinkles, such as those seen on the forehead from repeated expressions.
As the skin loses strength, it also has more difficulty defying gravity’s pull. Our skin starts to slacken and hang more loosely, especially around the lower face and neck. Eminence Organic Skin Care International Educator, Brian Goodwin, explains: “When the foundation slips, we see jowls form, loosening of the tissue around the eyes and an overall drooped appearance for the entire face.”
Another sign of aging skin is hyperpigmentation in the form of sun and age spots. In aging skin, these dark spots are typically brought on by years of sun exposure. When faced with UV rays, the skin protects itself by triggering the production of a pigment called melanin. As time passes and the skin’s melanocytes (the cells that produce melanin) are stimulated over and over, they start to overproduce and cause deposits of pigment on the skin’s surface.
How To Age Gracefully & Maintain Healthy Skin
While you can’t turn back the hands of time, you can make simple changes that ease the aging process. There are several ways to keep aging skin in good shape, including adopting a healthy lifestyle, eating a balanced diet and using results-oriented skin care.
One of the best ways to minimize the visible signs of inflammaging is to cut down on stress. According to the Huffington Post, studies show that people with high levels of stress have shorter telomeres, which are located at the tips of DNA chromosomes, causing cells to die or become damaged more quickly. Adopting healthy habits like regular exercise, meditation and a sleep schedule can help ease stress and, by extension, slow premature aging.
Look After Your Mental Health
When we manage stress effectively through practices such as mindfulness, meditation or regular physical activity, our cortisol levels balance out, leading to fewer stress-related breakouts and a more vibrant complexion.
Another way to help your skin age gracefully is to adjust your diet. Sugar, salt and alcohol are key culprits of premature aging and can easily be cut down. Swap in antioxidant-rich foods such as berries and leafy greens to assist your body in fighting free radicals. And, (surprise!) drink plenty of H2O to keep your skin (and body) hydrated and healthy.
Use A Nighttime Skin Care Routine
Did you know that your skin undergoes its most intensive repair process at night? Surprisingly, one way to wake up to smooth-looking skin is by establishing a nighttime routine. During sleep, the skin has the chance to counteract the environmental influences from the day. Our bodies are in repair mode while we sleep, so getting a good night’s rest is imperative to achieving skin that looks and feels healthy.
In addition, our skin experiences transepidermal water loss (TEWL) overnight which can weaken its protective hydrolipid barrier. Night treatments offer a chance to apply moisturizing ingredients topically, preventing water loss and effectively delivering product benefits. Treating your skin to nourishing, hydrating products every evening is ideal since nighttime oil production is two times lower than during the day.
Some of our Monoi Age Corrective Collection products feature an exclusive Argan Stem Cell Complex that unites with antioxidant-rich monoi. The ingredients in this collection work to visibly firm, hydrate and nourish all skin types. Brian recommends incorporating the Monoi Age Corrective Collection in your nighttime regimen for any skin type: “The skin is more receptive to absorbing ingredients at night when the epidermis becomes more penetrable. This factor makes it even more paramount to incorporate hydrating ingredients and protective oils into nighttime routines.”
Choose Specific Skin Care Ingredients
You can also minimize the visible signs of aging by seeking out potent actives in your skin care. Applying products that restore moisture, deliver antioxidant-rich ingredients and promote health are key to keeping skin looking youthful. Here are a few ingredients to look for when you’re selecting products for your skin care routine:
Our Product Support Representatives recommend the following products, which contain many of the ingredients listed above:
Exfoliation is an important skin care step for reducing the signs of aging and this can be achieved by using the Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant. This powder exfoliant is formulated with lactic acid and our Botanical Hyaluronic Acid Complex. Lactic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) exfoliant that removes a buildup of dead skin cells while the Botanical Hyaluronic Acid Complex contains hyaluronic acid and marshmallow root, offering deep hydration.
Next, the Citrus & Kale Potent C+E Serum is formulated with Vitamin C to improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and minimize the appearance of free radical damage. Vitamin C in this serum is stabilized by botanically-derived ferulic acid which provides antioxidants to brighten the look of the complexion.
Finally, you can use anything from the Marine Flower Peptide Collection to combat the signs of aging. For example, the Marine Flower Peptide Serum rejuvenates the complexion thanks to a Smart Collagen+ Complex as well as the use of an algae extract which increases hydration and improves the look of firmness.
Protect With SPF
Sunscreen is a very effective preventative product for maintaining youthful-looking skin and protecting yourself against health risks associated with sun exposure. By blocking harmful UVA and UVB rays, sunscreen reduces the risk of skin cancers by up to 50% and also helps mitigate premature skin aging.
You can help protect your skin from fine lines and wrinkles with our Radiant Protection SPF Fluid. This SPF combines bakuchiol with niacinamide to smooth the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while also offering broad-spectrum SPF 30 protection.
Explore Face Sculpting Tools
Does face contouring really work on the visible signs of aging? Absolutely, and we have an in-depth tutorial on how to use face sculpting tools that leave the skin looking dazzling and depuffed.
Watch our Lead Skin Care Trainer, Natalie Pergar, as she shows you how to contour your face using ice globes, and find out which products you need for the most effective routine.
Ready to age gracefully? For a skin care routine tailored to your unique skin type, book a consultation with a licensed esthetician at an Eminence Organics Spa Partner near you.