In Chinese medicine, which I’ve practiced for nearly 30 years, the lines on your face tell a lot about you and your story. Your skin is more than a covering for the rest of you. It transmits information from the outside world to the rest of your body, and vice versa.
It’s the bridge between your inner and outer world.
And it’s your most social organ.
I don’t know about you, but a few wrinkles here and there don’t bother me all that much. In my book, they’re part of a life well (and actively) lived. That doesn’t mean I want a lot more of them, but I’ve earned the ones I have and honor them.
What gets me is sagging
After about age 35-40, you may notice your skin is a little looser than it used to be. When it’s stretched, it doesn’t bounce back into shape as fast as it used to.
Over time, it might start to sag or hang loose in certain places. Like your neck or your jawline. Or under your eyes.
I think sagging bothers me because it makes you look more tired than you are. In Chinese medicine, the same mechanism that account for drooping or sagging is closely related to fatigue. But that’s another story for another day.
There are three main reasons that skin becomes looser and sags as we age
Less Collagen and elastin
Around age 30, your body starts producing less of the proteins that make it firm(collagen) and bouncy (elastin). Your body makes about 1% less collagen each year after 30.
Depending on a few things, like how much sun damage you’ve gotten over the years (and are still getting-wear your sunscreen every day), whether you smoke, how you eat, and how you take care of your skin, you may start to notice by 35-40 that your skin isn’t bouncing like it used to, or it’s a little looser at your jaw or neck.
If you’re stressed and/or not getting enough sleep, it might seem a little more saggy, especially under your eyes.
While the slow down of collagen and elastin production are a normal part of your life process, there are some things you can do to protect your skin and slow down the process.
Facial fat loss
Did you know that your face (and a few other areas of your body like the balls of your feet) has special fat pads? They’re made up of closely packed fat cells under your skin. As you age, the fat pads in your forehead and cheeks tend to disappear (reabsorbed by your body) and the ones in your lower face and jaw tend grow.
As your deeper fat pads decrease with age (for example deep in the cheeks), they don’t support the pads closer to your skin which can then begin to sag.
I don’t know why this happens, but it doesn’t really seem fair that your fat disappears from the places you like it and reappears in the places you don’t. If you lose a lot of weight (especially quickly) this process can happen even faster.
There is no product or facial exercise that is going to change this natural process. A good skincare routine will improve overall elasticity and firmness which will help counteract the effects of fat pad loss. As always, good sun protection, diet and hydration, and stopping smoking will also help.
If it really bothers you, dermal fillers can be used in the areas where your fat pads are disappearing. Make sure you find a skilled injector.
You’ve no doubt heard that after menopause, you need worry about osteoporosis. You may have even had a dexagram or bone scan to see how your bone density is doing.
Your face loses bone with age too. After about age 35, the number of cells that regenerate bone in your face decreases. The bone around your eyes widens, and the bones in your mid face and jaw start to (slowly) break down. This means that the frame that your skin and fat pads sit on is too small. This means sagging and looser skin.
The key to slowing this process is good bone health which will benefit your spine, hips, joints and overall health too.
- Make sure you have adequate vitamin D, calcium, and magnesium and supplement if necessary.
- Eat a diet with adequate protein and lots of fruits and veggies to supply vitamins and minerals
- Exercise regularly
- Make sure you practice good dental hygiene and get regular cleanings
No wonder your face tends to change as you get older
But change is life and trying to stop change is impossible.
Beauty exists at every age. It’s not about youth and perfection.
Taking care of yourself, staying healthy, and being your loving, wild, amazing self will bring out your natural beauty no matter where you are in life.
While nothing, not even a face lift, will stop age related fat pad and bone loss from changing your face, a good skincare routine can help you keep your tone and elasticity.
The best thing you can do to slow down sagging is to follow a healthy lifestyle, use sunscreen every day, and develop a quality, consistent skin care regime
For targeted firming, especially for your eyes, face, and neck, SunWindSnow is proud to announce AfterGlo face and neck firming moisturizer. It won’t give you the results of a face lift, but I’m guessing you don’t want one of those anyway.
What it will give you is noticeably firmer, moister skin and a wonderful glow.
It’s packed with peptides, royal jelly, and bee propolis that promote elasticity and tone. Some of my beta testers have called it magic.
AlpenGlo is currently (and finally-it’s been delayed like many other things lately) being made and will be available for sale in about 10-14 days.
“Aging is an extraordinary process in which you become the person you always should have been.”