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Why The Skin Ages

With a clearer understanding of the skin, its layers and composition, we can now address what are some of the primary factors that can cause a person’s skin to become damaged and show signs of aging. The main two causes of aging skin are:

  • Genetic Conditions

    Although our environmental conditions play a significant role in determining the aging process of our skin; we also have to look at the genetic side in the process of skin aging. Our individual genetics may ultimately determine how quickly our skin ages, becomes thinner and is damaged. The following list shows what the genetic factors are that can determine how our skin will age, throughout time:

    Collagen – The protein that gives our skin structure and strength is collagen. A humans skin is comprised of almost 80% collagen. As we progress in age we tend to lose collagen and which results in a deterioration in the firmness of our skin.

    Elastin – The elasticity in our skin is from our elastin. As we progress in age our elasticity is reduced and lost. The most affected area on the skin is generally our face. The reasoning being that the face area generally receives more sun exposure than what the rest of our bodies might experience. With both a loss and reduction of collagen and elastin, our skin will naturally start to become fragile and thinner.

    New Cell Turnover – Human skin is constantly in a state of renewing new skin cells. As skin cells are renewed, the shedding of old, dead skin cells occur. The process of creating new cell turnover slows as we age, causing our skin to become thinner and drier.

    Loss of Subcutaneous (Hypodermis Layer) Fat – Our skin has a protective fat of the hypodermis layer. This layer helps give the body structure and it is lost over time as we progress in age. This loss can also be cause of the appearance of thinning skin.

  • Environmental Conditions that Cause the Skin to Age

    The environment that we live in can be a toxic place for our skin and body to be in every day. As time has passed Earth has become a more toxic place for us to live. Good nutrition is harder to maintain, our environment is producing more pollution and toxins and more people are living sedentary lifestyles. When you combine all of these elements it creates not only a toxic place for our bodies, but also for our skin. Remember, our skin is not only our largest organ but it is the first line of defense for many environmental factors.

    Listed below are some of the more common environmental factors that cause the skin to age at a premature rate:

    • UV Radiation
    • Environmental Pollution
    • Poor Nutrition
    • Lack of Hydration
    • Lack of Exercise
    • Facial Expressions
    • Smoking
    • Stress
    • Poor Sleep Patterns
    • Alcohol Consumption
    • Cold & Dry Weather
  • Results of Aging Skin

    As you have seen, there are many different components that determine how a person’s skin will age. How they take care of their skin, the environment they live in and their genetic makeup. Although some people naturally age better than others, there is one common fact for everyone – we are all aging every second of every day. Some of the signs and results that the majority of people can expect to see over time are:

    • Wrinkling
    • Laxity
    • Dry Skin
    • Thinning Skin
    • Crow’s Feet
    • Pronounced Laugh Lines
    • Age Spots
    • Deep wrinkles in forehead & frown line
    • Spider Veins
    • Photoaging
    • Telangiectasias
    • Sagging Skin
    • Longer Healing Time
    • Loss of Elasticity
    • Dark Spots around the Eyes
    • Baggy Eyes
  • Summary of Conditions and Their Results

    Below you may find common issues and results that many people find as issues with their skin:

    Issue: Changes in Collagen Conformation
    Result: Weakened, wrinkled, saggy skin

    Issue: Elastin Polypeptide Degradation
    Result: Less firm, thinner, saggy skin

    Issue: Problems With Skin’s Lipid Matrix-(moisture barrier)
    Result: Dryness, sensitivity to irritation, skin problems

    Issue: Problems with Micro-Capillary Circulation
    Result: Accelerated aging in skin

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