Aging Hair/Skin Problems
What Causes Wrinkles?
Age. With age, it seems everything slows. This includes the
body’s ability to make collagen (keeps skin firm). With less
collagen, the skin loses elastin (makes skin resilient) and
hyaluronic acid (allows skin to retain water). By our 40s and 50s,
the skin has lost firmness, spring, and moisture. We see fine lines
Pale skin tends to wrinkle earlier than dark skin. People with pale
skin also tend to develop more wrinkles and fine lines. When lines
develop in dark skin, the lines tend to be deeper.
Constant muscle movement. Lines and wrinkles may be deep in
areas with lots of muscle movement, such as on the forehead or
around the mouth.
Sun, tanning beds, and sun
lamps. Lying out, using a tanning bed or sun lamp, and
even going outdoors without sunscreen cause wrinkles. Each
time you do any one of these, you expose your skin to
harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays. Exposure to UV rays
accelerates the breakdown of collagen and elastin, which
causes many people to see wrinkles and fine lines before
they reach their 40s and 50s. UV rays also can cause skin
Smoking. People who smoke expose their skin to toxins
that accelerate the aging of their skin. And, the repeat
puckering to inhale can cause deep lines around the lips.
Frequent squinting to avoid getting smoke in one’s eyes can
cause noticeable crow’s feet.
Tanning accelerates skin aging,
causing premature age spots and wrinkles.
At-home Wrinkle Remedies
The following can help diminish the appearance of fine lines and
Use moisturizer developed especially for the face. This
plumps up fine lines, which makes them less noticeable. Moisturizer
is the secret ingredient in many anti-aging products that promise
Wear sunscreen every day, even on overcast days. This helps
to protect your skin from further damage. Apply sunscreen to all
skin that will not be covered by clothing. For best results, you
should apply sunscreen 20 minutes before going outside. The American
Academy of Dermatology recommends using a sunscreen that offers a
Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of 30 or greater and broad-spectrum (UVA/UVB)
Repair skin at night. Gently washing your face every night
and then applying a product that contains retinol, followed by a
good facial moisturizer. The retinol can stimulate the skin to make
collagen, and the moisturizer seals in water.
Stop smoking. Many people notice significant improvements
after they stop smoking.
Eat a healthy diet. A diet rich in fresh vegetables, fruits,
whole grains, and other healthy foods can lead to healthier skin. Be
sure to include some protein in your diet. Our skin is made of
protein, so some protein is necessary for healthy skin.
Two procedures that dermatologists use to treat wrinkles
are microdermabrasion and chemical peels. Today, at-home
versions of these treatments are available. To help
ensure safety, the active ingredients in these at-home
treatments are much less potent. Less-potent ingredients
produce less dramatic results. People with very fine
lines may see younger-looking skin.
At-home products generally contain less-potent
ingredients, but improper use can cause problems. If you
have questions about how to use an at-home product or
concerns about the safety of a product, be sure to talk
with your dermatologist before trying the product.
About Non-prescription Wrinkle Creams, Lotions, and
Some people say they see results with regular use. These
people tend to have fine lines that sit near the surface
of the skin. Active ingredients that may diminish
Alpha hydroxy acid
generally work by sloughing off the outermost layer of
skin or hydrating the skin to plump it. Wrinkles return
when you stop using the product.
Keep in mind that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
considers these products to be cosmetics. This means the
products are required to undergo clinical trials as are drugs.
Advertising claims such as “100% of women noticed
results” often means that the product was given to a
group of women, and when asked about the results, all of
the women said they noticed a difference.
Wrinkle Treatments Dermatologists
Thanks to ongoing research, dermatologists offer several
treatments that can diminish the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles,
and even deep lines. These treatments are:
creams, serums, and lotions
Botulinum rejuvenation (Botox®
Dermabrasion or microdermabrasion
Plasma skin resurfacing
10 Questions to Ask Before
a Cosmetic Procedure
American Academy of Dermatology, “New
Study Evaluates Effectiveness of Vitamins for the Treatment of
Sun-Damaged Skin.” News release issued April
12, 2010. Last accessed May 21, 2010.
American Academy of Dermatology, “Saving
Face 101: How to Customize Your Skin Care Routine With Your Skin
Type.” News release issued November 10, 2009. Last accessed May
American Academy of Dermatology. “Enhanced
Cosmetic Procedures Plus New At-Home Treatments Give Patients More
Options.” News release issued November 13, 2008. Last
accessed May 21, 2010.
American Academy of Dermatology. “Keep
Father Time From Marching On: New Laser Treatments Offer Gentle and
Effective Skin Resurfacing in a Flash.” News release
issued February 3, 2008. Last accessed May 21, 2010.
American Academy of Dermatology, “Skin
Care Tips From the Top: Dermatologists Share Their Secrets for
Maintaining Healthy Skin, Hair And Nails.” News release issued
November 8, 2007. Last accessed May 21, 2010.
American Academy of Dermatology. “Hormones
and the Skin: The Role Hormones Play As We Age.” News release
issued October 18, 2006. Last accessed May 21, 2010.
American Academy of Dermatology. “Plump
Up the Volume.” News release issued July 28, 2006. Last accessed
May 21, 2010.
American Academy of Dermatology, “The
Right Filler is Key to Successful Treatment.”
News Release issued March 3, 2006. Lasted accessed May 21, 2010.
Sadick, N. “Structural Approach to Aesthetic Rejuvenation.” In:
Hirsch, Sadick, and Cohen. Aesthetic Rejuvenation. China,
McGraw-Hill Companies; 2009. 17 – 30.
All content solely
developed by the American Academy of Dermatology
For Your Safety
You should never self-inject fillers. Serious side
effects can occur, including infection and permanent
scars. Fillers should only be injected in a medical