How Sun Exposure Ages Your Skin

08 24 2016

This guide is designed to give you the straight scoop on how and why the sun accelerates the aging process, causing everything from dehydration and wrinkles to sun spots and sagging... not to mention, skin cancer.
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HOW SUN EXPOSURE AGES YOUR SKIN


From the moment you’re born, everyone is always telling you (and sometimes yelling at you) to wear sunscreen. “The sun gives you cancer. The sun makes your skin blotchy. The sun gives you wrinkles.” And unfortunately, it all gets worse as you age. But the big question is why.

This guide is designed to give you the straight scoop on how and why the sun accelerates the aging process, causing everything from dehydration and wrinkles to sun spots and sagging…not to mention, skin cancer. This guide is not meant to scare you, but rather to help you understand what’s really happening so you can make smarter sunscreen and skin care shopping decisions.


How to Accelerate Aging?


It's as simple as 1-2-3


  1. You go out in the sun either wearing the wrong sunscreen or no sunscreen at all.
  2. UVA and UVB rays penetrate deep within the skin and at the surface, releasing something called free radicals.
  3. Free radicals go on the attack, aging your skin with wrinkles, dryness, sagging, and more.

Shedding light on free radicals


Never heard of free radicals? Heard about them but don’t really know what they do? Join the club.

Free radicals are unstable molecules always on the hunt for an electron to bond with. Unfortunately when they “steal” those electrons from other molecules, they initiate chain reactions that inflict damage on healthy cells and tissue. The result: aging skin.


3 Glaring Signs of Aging Skin


1. Wrinkles and sagging


Why it happens: Free radicals attack collagen and elastin.

Collagen and elastin are protein fibers that create scaffolding for your skin, providing a supportive structure that holds up your epidermis or outermost layer of skin. When free radicals assault collagen and elastin, the skin loses its strength and elasticity and starts to sag and wrinkle.


2. Dry, leathery skin


Why it happens: Free radicals attack lipids.

Lipids help create a protective barrier for your skin that does two important things: it holds moisture in and keeps the elements, like sun and wind, out. Unfortunately, when lipids go head to head with free radicals, your lipid barrier is compromised, causing dry, leathery and irritated skin.


3. Sun spots, blotchy skin…and even skin cancer


Why it happens: Free radicals attack DNA.

Prolonged exposure to UVA rays can increase melanin production, creating hyperpigmentation (or uneven darkening of the skin) and age spots. What’s worse, when free radicals wreak havoc on cell DNA they cause cell mutations that may result in skin cancer, including melanoma. Supplementing with topical antioxidants is the solution to saving your skin.

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