You may have a handy mental list of what to seek out to help your skin looks its beautiful best (antioxidants, lotions, the advice of trusted skincare professionals), but sometimes knowing what not to do is just as important. Here are four things to stay away from if you want to keep wrinkles and other untimely signs of aging at bay.
At this point, pretty much everybody knows that sun exposure (and time spent under the sun-mimicking bulbs in tanning beds) is a surefire way to damage your skin. From a health perspective, ultraviolet radiation is a contributor to skin cancer. From a cosmetic perspective, it contributes to the formation of wrinkles, spots, and a host of other aesthetic problems. The solution to this is simple: Wear sunscreen or just stay in the shade.
A cigarette or cigar habit does more than damage your lungs (though that’s a significant side effect of its own). Chemicals in the smoke are known to speed up the breakdown of healthy compounds in the skin, as well as hamper healthy blood flow, both of which are crucial to looking your smooth and rosy best. Like avoiding sun exposure, the solution to this is also simple: Stop smoking, and avoid others who do as much as possible.
Your body is busy while you sleep, kicking cells into gear so they can make more skin-smoothing components, like collagen and elastin. Want to load up on caffeine and stay awake till the wee hours? You can do so, but the price may be more than an extra slap of the snooze button the next morning. Lack of sleep can contribute to everything from wrinkles to sagging to more visible blood vessels due to dilation. The solution? Go to bed!
This one is a bit tricky. You obviously shouldn’t avoid all forms of water, since staying properly hydrated is essential to having healthy, pliant skin. What you should avoid, however, is repeatedly having wet skin that dries out. This problem can be made worse when the water is accompanied by harsh chemicals, whether they take the form of chlorine in a pool or powerful soaps scrubbed into the face each morning. Various moisturizers and serums are available to help, as are cosmetic treatments that can encourage natural moisture retention in the skin.
Talk to the dermatologists at the Los Angeles area’s Skin Care and Laser Center of Beverly Hills to learn more about how healthy skin starts at home—as well as what can be done to combat the damage caused by any of these four culprits. Call 310.246.0495 to arrange a consultation or send a message online.Written by Dr. Derek Jones
Dr. Derek Jones is a renowned Los Angeles and Beverly Hills area dermatologist practicing in cosmetic and general dermatology.