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Your skin’s texture is influenced by external elements, like pollution and skin care products, and internal elements, including your health and diet. There are also natural changes that happen with age.
Wrinkles and other skin changes are part of life and nothing to be ashamed of, but if smooth skin is what you’re after, keep reading.
Your lifestyle doesn’t just affect your overall health. It affects your skin’s health, too. Here are some healthy living tips that can help you enjoy smoother skin longer:
- Staying hydrated. Though it’s not entirely clear exactly how drinking water is able to improve your skin, there’s
evidencethat it does. Drinking water improves your skin’s elasticity and reduces signs of dryness and roughness, resulting in smoother skin.
- Eating foods high in antioxidants. Antioxidant-rich foods have a protective effect on the skin. These foods include leafy greens, yellow and orange fruits and vegetables, and fatty fish, such as salmon. There’s also
evidencethat adding probiotics to your diet may help treat and prevent skin conditions, such as eczema and acne, as well as skin damage caused by ultraviolet (UV) light.
- Exercising. Animal and human
studieshave shown that regular aerobic exercise can improve the skin’s composition. It makes the skin’s outer layer thinner and thickens the inner layers — the opposite of what happens as we age. This results in smoother, younger-looking skin.
- Getting enough sleep. Beauty sleep really is a thing! Your skin, like the rest of your body, repairs itself during sleep. Increased blood flow and collagen production are just a couple things that occur during sleep and help repair UV damage and reduce sun spots and wrinkles.
- Protecting against the effects of the sun. UV rays damage your skin cells’ DNA, leading to premature aging, dryness, and a higher risk of skin cancer. Use sunscreen, limit your time in the sun, and wear protective clothing. Steer clear of tanning beds, which do more damage than the sun, according to the
Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
- Not smoking. Internal and external exposure to tobacco smoke causes premature skin aging and wrinkles, and a higher risk of skin disorders, including acne and psoriasis. It also impairs your skin’s ability to heal itself. Quitting smoking can be difficult, but a doctor can help craft a cessation plan that’s right for you.
- Drinking less alcohol. Alcohol consumption has been linked to skin photodamage, which is damage caused by sunlight. Drinking too much can also cause dehydration, which causes dry skin and premature aging. To reduce the effects of alcohol on your body and skin, limit your drinks to one or two per day.
There are a number of over-the-counter (OTC) products available to help keep your skin smooth. Be sure to use products that are right for your skin type for the best results.
- Skin exfoliators. Scrubs can help slough away dead skin cells that can build up on your skin, causing it to feel rough and look uneven. To exfoliate safely, apply scrub in a slow circular motion using very light pressure, and only exfoliate once a week.
- Alpha hydroxy acid (AHA). AHAs are plant and animal acids used in skin care products. They exfoliate, promote collagen and blood flow, and improve the appearance of wrinkles. They’re also used to treat acne and skin discoloration.
- Moisturizers. Moisturizer adds an extra layer of protection on your skin and helps it stay hydrated. Choosing a facial moisturizer and applying it daily can help to keep skin smooth. Don’t forget to apply a moisturizing body lotion to help keep the rest of your skin smooth.
- Dry brushing. Dry brushing involves using a natural, stiff-bristled brush to exfoliate the skin. Use the brush on dry skin, and brush in long fluid strokes on your limbs, and in a circular motion on your back and torso.
- Mild, gentle cleansers. The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) recommends washing your face with a gentle, nonabrasive, alcohol-free cleanser in the morning and before bed, as well as after sweating.
Here are some home remedies that may improve skin health for a smoother appearance.
- Honey. Honey is a natural exfoliator that also happens to have bioactive properties that may be beneficial in treating a number of skin conditions and reducing the appearance of wrinkles.
- Coconut oil. Coconut oil is an effective moisturizer with anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties that may help also treat certain inflammatory skin conditions. Since it may clog pores, it’s best to limit its use to the body.
- Oatmeal baths. Oatmeal baths can help your skin retain moisture and treat certain skin conditions. You can make your own oatmeal bath or shop for oatmeal baths online, along with other oatmeal skin care products for your face and body.
- Essential oils. Some essential oils, when diluted with carrier oils, can be applied to the skin to reduce wrinkles and treat a number of skin issues. Some essential oils for wrinkles include lemon, rose, and jojoba oils.
- Humidifiers. Humidifiers add moisture to the air to prevent your skin from drying out. It’s also an effect remedy for psoriasis. You can shop for humidifiers online.
Medical treatments are available, depending on your needs and budget. Speak to a dermatologist about your options.
4 percent hydroquinone
Hydroquinone is a skin lightener that’s used to treat hyperpigmentation. It can also be used to treat other skin issues, including:
Chemical peels remove dead skin cells so that the healthier, smooth skin beneath is revealed. It can be used to treat:
- uneven skin
- fine lines and wrinkles
- sun damage
Microdermabrasion and dermabrasion
Microdermabrasion uses an applicator with an abrasive tip to sand away the outer layer of the skin. Dermabrasion is a more invasive procedure that removes the damaged outer layers of the skin.
Both can be used to treat:
- fine lines and wrinkles
- acne scars
- enlarged pores
- uneven skin tone and texture
Laser skin resurfacing
Laser skin resurfacing uses powerful light beams to remove damaged skin. It can be used to reduce the appearance of:
- stretch marks
- burn marks
- age spots
Dermal fillers or Botox
Botox and dermal fillers are injectable cosmetic treatments used for wrinkles. Botox works by relaxing muscles in the face to smooth out its appearance, while fillers use a gel-type substance to fill in lines and wrinkles. It also softens the contours of your face.
Lines, wrinkles, and other markings on the skin are a natural part of life that tends to become more apparent with age. While there’s no shame in having them, some people want to hang on to their smooth skin for as long as possible.
With some changes to your lifestyle and the help of at-home or medical treatments, you can help keep your skin smooth.