Skin aging is an unavoidable phenomenon, but for all that we can act on its rhythm and thus slow down its development, this is already good news! To do this, it is necessary to understand the different sources at the origin of his aggression and stress. Of course, you will not be able to act on your genetics but you will be able to act on all the environmental factors which have a major impact and which expose your skin to this stress, making it dull, wrinkled, dehydrated, oxidized...
Before listing the factors that attack our skin, know that whatever the origin, the result on the skin is oxidative stress, such as rust which oxidizes a piece of metal until it disappears, that is, that is to say the aggression and then the death of our healthy cells by harmful small molecules called free radicals. These free radicals are produced regularly by our bodies, reportedly only by the oxygen we breathe, but are regularly destroyed and neutralized by other antioxidant molecules. Oxidative stress occurs when the production of free radicals is in excess and our skin can no longer neutralize them.
In this article, we explain the environmental factors outside - and not inside the body - that generate this excess and we give you advice on how to protect yourself from it. Know that it will be your responsibility to act on certain specific factors such as tobacco, alcohol, etc... while you can only learn to protect yourself from certain factors such as pollution or UV radiation.
Pollution, UV radiation, blue light are all external factors that attack the skin
Pollution with its toxins and fine carbon particles adheres to our epidermis and wreaks havoc on our skin: it dehydrates it, inflames it, making it duller, more sensitive, more fragile... Set up an effect pollution shield is not that complicated. The first inviolable rule is to clean your skin morning and night from all these tiny particles, some of which are particularly tough! So choose a good makeup remover or gentle purifier every day (even if you don't wear makeup). And once or twice a week, depending on your skin type, apply a gentle exfoliant to cleanse impurities and get rid of dead skin and small waste. Eliminate stubborn impurities using a purifying clay mask if possible, which has the ability to exchange minerals for toxins in the skin. The second rule is to favor treatments that "cover" your skin, that is to say treatments rich in polysaccharides or other active ingredients that coats your skin with a protective film against pollution. Last rule and not the least, moisturize your skin because the more hydrated the skin, the more fluid the toxins will be evacuated and therefore the less they will be able to infiltrate.
UV rays attack all the functions of our skin: it alters the hydrolipidic protective film of our skin, destroys its collagen and elastin, oxidizes our cells, alters the composition of certain molecules, proteins, lipids, etc. The body has created its own defenses, these are the melanocytes, small shields that absorb the sun's ultraviolet rays and capture the dreaded free radicals. But they cannot be enough on their own! All antioxidant substances reducing this type of oxidative stress are therefore welcome, and in particular vitamin E and carotenoids. These are not synthesized by humans and come mainly from plants in the sun such as the palm tree. They protect the epidermis and dermis against the potentially dangerous effects of the sun. In general, creams based on polyphenols are very interesting for combating the cascade of oxidative stress. Also take advantage of foods well supplied in vitamin A such as liver, fatty fish, carrots, melon, dates and many others to garnish your plates.
A quick note on blue light! the effect of this light, close to ultra-violet, which we hear more and more often, is not recent. What is recent, however, is the increasing exposure to this light since it is also emitted by all screens equipped with LED lamps such as computers, tablets, smartphones, television and other high-tech equipment. techs. A large overexposure to this light (6 to 7 hours per day) could have potentially harmful effects on the skin.
Aging of the skin strongly impacted by tobacco and alcohol
The effect of tobacco on the skin has been widely demonstrated. Epidemiological studies have highlighted the disastrous effect of its toxic substances on the skin: more pronounced oxidation of cells, a duller and darker complexion, an increase in facial wrinkles. It is now recognized that with each puff of a cigarette, peripheral "cellular" stress increases by 10%!
The therapies to help smokers stop smoking and its damage are so many and varied that it would be a shame to miss them (reflexology, relaxation, acupuncture, cognitive and behavioral therapies, flower essences, etc.)
Excess alcohol is also a major source of accelerated aging of the skin. We are talking about excess alcohol, that is to say daily consumption of strong alcohol or red wine but in high doses (well over 3 glasses every day) because in small quantities, the red wine is rather beneficial thanks to the contribution of the polyphenols of the grapes. Alcohol abuse dehydrates, creates an overload of toxins in the body and in the skin since the liver can no longer fully perform its cleansing function. It also promotes tissue stiffening. Thus the skin loses its suppleness, becomes quite dull, wrinkled and inflamed.
The body has also provided resources, take advantage of them! Indeed, the practice of sport is excellent for eliminating all toxins. Also know that it is during sleep that the skin repairs and regenerates itself. The mechanisms are put in place to lower inflammation, eliminate toxins, renew defenses, regenerate cells. The peak of cell activity and regeneration occurs between midnight and 2 a.m.