In case you need to be reminded, sunbathing is always a no-no where a youthful complexion is concerned. Despite the fact that too much time baking can leave you looking like a wrinkled mess, so many people continue to forgo sunscreen and expose their delicate facial skin to indoor or outdoor tanning.
"You can undo a year's worth of effort to improve the tone, texture and smoothness of your skin with just a few days of sunbathing," Hilt says. "The sun damage breaks down your collagen, resulting in wrinkled, mottled skin that lacks firmness. " Wear sunscreen daily, even if you have darker skin and even when it's cloudy. If you want that sunkissed glow, opt for sunless tanning alternatives.
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Need another reason to butt out? Cigarette smoking ruins your skin, Hilt says. "It's been shown to not only cause greater acne breakouts but also to speed up the normal aging process of your skin, contributing to wrinkles on your face and body," she explains. Cigarette smoking restricts blood flow to your skin, depriving it of oxygen and important nutrients. It also damages the collagen and elastin fibers in your skin, resulting in fine lines.
To really make a difference in your skin, the trick is to use skin care products with proven powerhouse ingredients such as lactic, glycolic and salicylic acids, peptides, antioxidants and humectants (ingredients that draw moisture to your skin).
"When you begin to see telltale signs of aging, make sure your skin care strategy is focused on correcting the aging you see right now and minimizing the appearance of future aging," advises Hilt. She says that, to correct visible signs of aging, use products that contain AHAs (alpha hydroxy acids) salicylic acid, peptides, antioxidants, safe skin-lightening agents and water binders in your skin care routine. "This will help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, boost skin firmness, plump skin cells and minimize uneven skin tones," she adds.