There are so many facets to aging. While we gain wisdom and confidence with age, the other side effect that’s given so much attention in no small part due to human vanity, is what age does to our face.
Our face is front and center every day. It gets the most abuse because it takes on all of the sun damage, the environmental damage, and of course the damage that comes with repeated expression. So, what are the exact causes of this facial aging? How can we at least help to natural avoid some of it?
Aside from the natural breakdown of cells and tissue which lend to the aging process, there are other hidden ways our facial structure and integrity begin to change over the years. Let’s look at some of these other lesser known causes.
Underlying Facial Bone Structure
Most of us have heard of the compliment “oh you have such great bone structure?” One of the main reasons our faces have a certain angle and symmetry is because of the underlying bone and fascia structure that provides the foundation for our facial skin.
Unfortunately, even our bone matter wears away over time. This can have a variety of visual impacts. Our cheek bones can become less defined for example (this is probably the most common and telling effect).
What can you do about this? Get plenty of vitamin D and healthy levels of calcium for starters. These two work hand in hand to support bone health and help to prevent degeneration and erosion of the bone. Weight bearing exercises also help prevent the weakening and erosion of bone matter.
Collagen Production Plummets
Did you know that our bodies make a ton of collagen up until about the age of 25? It starts to drop off right after that for most people. Incidentally, this is also around the time many people start to notice visible signs of aging.
Fine lines, wrinkles and depressions form more easily when the natural springiness that comes with lots of collagen wanes. As this resilience lessens, the skin becomes more rigid, and the repeated expressions we make begin to form permanent lines.
Using a hyaluronic acid serum helps give this firmness back, and making sure you limit sugar intake is key to keeping skin resilient. A process called glycation occurs with excess sugar consumption, which exacerbates the brittle effect less collagen has on the skin.
Just like bone supports the facial skin, so does the muscle wrapping around the bone.The integrity, strength and resilience of the facial muscles support the skin and fatty dermal layers immediately below the skin. We enjoy a lot of natural muscle tone, facial and otherwise, with youth. As we age, the muscles begin to lose their slack. They sag, atrophy and lose their firmness and resiliency.
Just like you can work out the muscles in your body though, you can thankfully also work the muscles of your face! There are really effective exercises you can find online (Youtube is a treasure trove of free facial exercises). Common problems caused by sagging muscles are nasolabial folds, smile and laugh lines, “jowls” and “turkey neck”, and general sagging of the facial skin.
Facial exercises are a great way to keep the underlying facial foundation strong, firm and lifted. It helps to defy the inevitable effects of gravity, and also helps with fine lines and deep depressions since it helps hold everything taut.