By Linda Foster | Medically reviewed by Christine Wilmsen Craig, MD
Protecting and caring for your skin are the best anti-aging treatments for a younger looking complexion.
Are you tired of waging a war against wrinkles? Scott Gerrish, MD, of Gerrish and Associates, PC, a non-surgical skin care specialist with offices in Virginia and Maryland states, “Don’t give up yet. There are steps you can take to lessen and even reverse one of the biggest signs of aging: wrinkles.”
13 Simple and Smart Skin Care Steps to Reduce Wrinkles
1. Avoid sun exposure. Try to wear white or light colors, and wear a hat when you’re outdoors. Also, don’t use tanning booths, which can be worse than the sun.
2. Wear sunscreen. For the best anti-aging protection, Dr. Gerrish strongly recommends, “Apply sunscreen with at least an SPF 15 (sun protection factor) thirty minutes before sun exposure to protect your skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays. Look for one with zinc or titanium oxide in the ingredient list.”
3. Avoid environmental pollutants. Ozone, smoke, and gasoline fumes are just a few of the pollutants that can age skin and cause premature wrinkles.
4. Start an anti-aging skin care program. June Breiner, MD, an internist in Maryland suggests, “Consult with a non-surgical skin care doctor. There are many products available that thicken your skin and reduce wrinkles.”
5. Avoid smoking and second-hand smoke. Smoking takes away oxygen and nutrients, and it also increases the number of free radicals in your body’s cells, a main cause of skin aging. “The amount of cigarette consumption and the number of years you have smoked are correlated with an increase in premature wrinkles,” states Dr. Breiner.
6. Wear sunglasses. Other than staying indoors and away from windows, sunglasses are the best way to protect the thin, sensitive skin around your eyes from UV radiation.
7. Sleep on your back, if possible. Sleeping with your face pressed against the pillow can cause sleep lines, which can turn into wrinkles. Satin pillow cases can also help in the anti-wrinkle fight.
8. Use moisturizer. A good moisturizer will keep skin hydrated and soften wrinkles.
9. Exercise regularly. “It gets your cardiovascular system going, which is great for getting needed nutrients and oxygen to your skin,” Breiner explains. “You should get cardiovascular exercise for your heart and skin health, and weight strengthening exercises for muscle underlying your skin.”
10. Eat a nutritious, anti-aging diet. Drink plenty of water and teas, and get eight to ten servings daily of fruits and vegetables. Eat fresh caught Atlantic salmon three times a week or another fish high in omega 3 fatty acids, such as herring, mackerel, trout, or tuna. Foods have a tremendous ability to fight the aging process as they are chock full of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that your body needs to combat wrinkles, says Breiner.
11. Avoid processed and refined foods and sugars. They contain chemicals that can cause your skin to age prematurely
12. Try Retin-A or Renova. Gerrish recommends, “See your doctor for a prescription of Retin-A, a cream that has been proven to reduce fine lines and wrinkles, and thicken thinning skin, which is part of the aging process.” If your skin is very dry, ask about Renova, a gentler formulation of the anti wrinkle cream.
13. Avoid stress. When you’re stressed out, your body releases a powerful aging hormone, cortisol, into your blood stream. “If you have chronic stress, take yoga, write in a journal daily, sing, take a walk, meditate. Do whatever works for you to reduce stress,” suggests Gerrish.
Need a bit more motivation to implement this skin care plan? The best anti-aging advice is also great for your overall health, so get started today.