Can I Reduce Facial Wrinkles? All Your Questions Answered
Wrinkles are the quintessential sign of aging. We associate these deep grooves in the face with old age, maturity, and tend to be afraid of them. Especially women, who are more concerned with their physical appearance, might be worried that they look too old and get self-conscious when they see wrinkles start to appear on their face. And so the million-dollar question is: can I reduce the look of facial wrinkles?
Let’s start by understanding what exactly wrinkles are and how they form!
Wrinkles are essentially fine lines and grooves in your face that become more prominent with age. It is caused by thinner and less elastic skin.
The skin ages through natural cumulative processes that occur as the body matures. There are both internal and external aging processes that happen in the skin. Internal aging happens regardless of what you do. We have no control over this process. Collagen production in the dermis decreases year-on-year after you turn twenty, and it ceases after forty. As collagen production slows down, collagen and elastin fibers also start to become thicker, clumpier, and looser which is how the skin becomes inelastic and brittle. The thinning of skin occurs as the fat cells in the subcutaneous layer shrink. The combination of thinning skin with a loss of elasticity results in wrinkles.
Actually, wrinkles are formed right from your childhood and younger years. Whenever you make facial expressions fine lines begin to develop on your skin. Due to your youth and hence the abundance of collagen and fats, this allows the skin to spring back to normal, which is why wrinkles and lines do not show on young people. However, as you grow older and the skin loses this property of elasticity, that is how wrinkles begin to become more pronounced. The lines in your skin are unable to bounce back the way it did when you were young, and that is how permanent grooves in the skin form.
Meanwhile, the external aging process occurs due to environmental factors that are damaging to the skin and is caused by free radicals that pull electrons from molecules in the skin, resulting in biological alterations to the cells. Skin proteins are damaged and as a result, skin becomes more brittle and less elastic. The biggest culprits of external skin damage are UV exposure (sun exposure) and smoking. These exacerbate the rate of wrinkle formation and skin aging.
There are a number of myths about wrinkles that are untrue:
1. Wrinkles are genetic
Wrinkles are not genetic, it is a natural process that occurs to everyone. If you feel like you are seeing the onset of wrinkles, it is probably from some external reason such as too much sun exposure. Wrinkles will inevitably appear no matter your genetics.
2. There is a perfect anti-aging skincare regime that will prevent wrinkles
There is no one perfect solution to aging. Aging will happen to you no matter how many serums you use, how many lasers you undergo, and how much dermal filler you get. You can’t avoid wrinkles simply because you can’t avoid the internal aging process that affects us all.
3. Only expensive procedures can reduce wrinkles
Laser treatments, dermal filler, fancy products that all promise to get rid of wrinkles… Firstly, you can’t get rid of wrinkles entirely so don’t expect your products and procedures to do that. They can only delay the inevitable. However, the best wrinkle prevention starts early on in your life by taking good care of your skin.
4. If I moisturize, I won’t get wrinkles
It is true that a loss of moisture in the skin is a large part of why skin becomes dry and brittle, but it isn’t accurate either to assume that moisturizing will get rid of wrinkles. Moisturiser may be able to reduce the look and appearance of wrinkles, but it is not a quick fix to get rid of wrinkles.
Reducing Wrinkles: Procedures
Aesthetic procedures are some of the most well-known anti-aging treatments and work better for those with already mature skin. Here are the most common ones:
1. Dermal fillers
Fillers help to combat the fine lines and wrinkles that come with aging by injecting a material into the areas with lines. Some of the common areas to get a dermal filler are the lines extending from your nose to your mouth (the smile lines), and another pair that go from the sides of your mouth to the skin, known as marionette lines. A dermatologist or aesthetician will inject hyaluronic acid into these folds to plump the area and reduce the look of prominent lines. These fillers can last for up to 6 months and will wear off eventually so you will need to get touch-ups.
2. Chemical peels
Chemical peels do exactly as their name goes — a chemical solution is applied to the affected area. The solution dissolves the layer of dead skin and causes it to peel off, revealing a new layer of fresh, smooth skin underneath.
Facelifts are surgical procedures that involve pulling the facial skin back to tighten it. This reduces the look of loose, sagging skin by manually tightening the skin back over the face, giving it a more lifted appearance. You should only go to a reputable surgeon or aesthetician for this procedure.
Reducing Wrinkles: Non-Invasive Methods
If you don’t want to spend money and time on procedures, you can get over-the-counter products or even try super easy and budget-friendly natural home remedies!
Incorporate serums to boost your skin’s moisture and hydration. Serums with vitamin A and vitamin C are the most helpful in anti-aging, as these have antioxidant properties to fight free radicals, and also help to stimulate collagen production.
2. Egg whites
Egg whites contain protein, vitamin B, and vitamin E which are great for firming up the skin, making it an excellent home remedy for wrinkles which are caused by brittleness and thinning skin. All you have to do is separate a few egg whites from the yolks and whip it up with a whisk. Apply it directly to your skin and let it sit for about 15 minutes or until it is dry. Then wash it off with warm water. The nutrients will firm up your skin and help reduce the look of fine lines.
3. Aloe Vera
Aloe vera is well-known for helping repair skin damaged by the sun due to its cooling and soothing effect. Aloe vera contains a compound called malic acid, which is excellent for improving the elasticity of the skin, directly combating the reduction in skin elasticity which is why wrinkles form.
4. Banana Mask
Not only are bananas a super delicious and nutritious source of fiber, but it also has lots of benefits for the skin! Take two ripe bananas, peel them and mash it up into banana goop. Then apply it to your face and let it sit as a mask for about 30 minutes.
Wrinkles are caused by natural processes that we have little control over. The best way is prevention from young. That doesn’t mean going through life emotionless by not making facial expressions! Instead, take charge of your skincare right from young by staying out of the sun as much as possible, using a broad-spectrum sunscreen every day, and don’t smoke! Remember that the sun and smoking are the biggest culprits of aging, so if you want to look young and fresh for as long as possible, stay away from them!