If you want to be the proud owner of the best complexion you can nurture after 40 there are few tips and tricks that will help to get you there. Let’s dig a little deeper.
The skin is our largest organ and covers approximately two square metres (on average) and accounts for around 15 percent of our weight. The physiology of the skin is quite complex. It has several layers and, like most things in life, as the years go by it alters.
How The Skin Changes
Once you hit 40 your skin changes in direct relation to hormonal shifts and ageing. Most people don’t realise that progesterone drops significantly around 35. Then, as we head towards perimenopause (40-45) estrogen levels begin to shift. Lifestyle factors also come into play. Age-related wrinkling and textural changes can occur due to sun damage, smoking, poor nutrition and genetics.
Sex Hormones & Skin
Estrogen gives us our ‘juice’ and is a big contributor to plump, youthful skin on our face and bodies. It regulates blood flow to the complexion and skin thickness. During perimenopause estrogen tends to fluctuate so at times you’ll have lots of it and then it will dip. Testosterone (yes, women do use testosterone) is declining too, and as progesterone’s already lowered your sex hormones are often way out of balance leading to things like pimples – something you thought you’d left behind in your teenage years – and the odd whisker or two (horrors!)
Collagen & Elastin
The health of the proteins collagen and elastin are major players in how our skin ages. Collagen is responsible for the ‘plumping’ and thickness of skin and elastin the ‘elasticity’ and firmness. With age and the lifestyle factors we mentioned earlier the protein bands may become cross-linked and lead to wrinkling and sagging. It happens naturally by one percent a year from our 20s onwards, but as we hit perimenopause it speeds up.
9 Ways to Nurture Your Skin
Take Omega-3 oil supplements. Fish oil is effective, or if you’re a vegetarian, flaxseed. Evening Primrose Oil always has a good effect on the complexion too.
There are also some brilliant high-end, beauty therapy driven, skin-specific supplements available such as the amazing range from Advanced Nutrition.
2. A Spoonful Of Oil
Take a spoonful of coconut or olive oil a day. To the uninitiated this may seem bizarre but it’s a powerful beauty (and health) tip. Bestow Beauty Oil is a brilliant option too.
A radiant complexion LOVES moisture. Choose one that includes gold standard hydrators like hyaluronic acid and glycerin high on the ingredient list. Studies have shown hyaluronic acid can reduce the appearance of wrinkles and sagging with four to six weeks of regular use.
A Word About Hyaluronic Acid
Estrogen drives hyaluronic acid (HA) aka hyaluronan in the body. This isn’t an acid but a lubricating, moisturising substance produced naturally in the body to help keep the levels of collagen and elastin up. This means that as our estrogen declines so do our levels of HA. I like to use a pure hyaluronic acid like The Ordinary’s which you can buy here.
4. Skin Rejuvenation
One of the best ingredients for adult skin is a good quality vitamin A aka retinol or retinoid. Used in the right percentages, vitamin A is proven to strengthen skin and stimulate collagen. Osmosis and Environ are big stars in the retinoid field with both being developed by doctors.
Sleep-time is when your body rejuvenates and works with your hormones, stress levels, metabolism and skin. If you’re having trouble sleeping try stopping any food intake three hours before bed, turning all screens off at least one hour before, sipping chamomile tea, diffusing an essential oil like lavender, or having a relaxing bath with Epsom salts. You can add a few drops of your essential oil too. And don’t go to bed too late as your natural sleep aid, melatonin, begins to activate around 9 pm.
6. Try Dry Brushing
Take a tip from the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda and embrace daily dry body brushing and oiling. Use a long-handled natural bristle body brush or exfoliating gloves (K-Mart have them at very reasonable prices) and, starting at your feet brush upwards. Follow with coconut, sesame (not the cooking kind) or olive oil and step into the shower to rinse off. Pat dry. Your skin and circulation will love you for it.
7. Eat The Rainbow
Nutrition is not only the cornerstone of great health but it’s also one of the building blocks of great skin. Eat the rainbow to get all the power of antioxidants for skin strength.
8. Ditch The Sugar
Your skin won’t just benefit from this one, so will your waistline. Refined sugar causes the hormone insulin to spike creating inflammation, which in the skin breaks down collagen and elastin resulting in sagging and wrinkles. ‘Nuff said.
9. Get Thee A Skin Therapist
A professional treatment every four to six weeks – if budget allows – will repay your skin in spades. A good beauty therapist knows anatomy and physiology, is trained in the composition of the skin and how it works, and has access to some pretty amazing products. Ask us if you need a recommendation because it’s a little bit like finding a hairdresser or doctor. How do you know?
A detox will help you get a glowing and radiant complexion too. It’s amazing how once you get rid of the junk, help your liver flush toxins the way it was designed to, and eat enough fibre to poop regularly your skin looks more youthful. If you want to sign up to the waitlist for our 21-Day Hormone Detox you can do so here.
THANKS FOR STOPPING BY!
YOURS IN HEALTH & HAPPINESS 😀