New Delhi: Being a man doesn’t mean that you don’t have to indulge in self-care. Ageing gracefully works for all genders. Throughout history, the pursuit of eternal youth has captivated many, including the Macedonian king Alexander the Great. Although the mystical 'Fountain of Youth' has remained elusive, the desire for lasting youth persists.
Ageing is a natural process. As men get older, the skin becomes thinner and drier, and wrinkles and fine lines start to appear. There are also extrinsic aging factors that include certain lifestyle choices like sun exposure, smoking, alcohol consumption, and lack of sleep, all of which can further contribute to the signs of premature aging.
While defying ageing may seem impossible, taking actionable steps can help us slow the process.
How does men’s skin age?
Hormones play a key role in how skin ages, though men are luckier, as they have a natural advantage of slower declination of testosterone. It gradually declines, at around 1% per year after the age of 30. This is in contrast to estrogen levels in women, which decline more rapidly after menopause.
As a result of these different hormonal profiles, compared to women, men's skin is about 25 per cent thicker. This thicker skin allows men to produce more collagen, elastin, and sebum (oil), all of which are essential for maintaining youthful-looking skin. While men do have some natural advantages in the fight against ageing, it is still important to adopt a good skincare routine, irrespective of age.
CTM is essential
CTM stands for cleansing, toning, and moisturising. A CTM routine is one of the most effective and simple skincare routines for men, It takes care of all of the common skin concerns and keeps your skin healthy and naturally glowing. You start with a gentle facial cleanser or face wash to remove dirt, excess oil, and impurities from your skin, follow it up with a toner to further balance the pH of the skin, clean out your pores tighten them, and remove any residual impurities. Opt for products with ingredients such as salicylic acid for acne-prone skin or glycolic acid for exfoliation. Finally, finish up with a lightweight, non-greasy moisturiser that provides hydration and helps maintain the skin's moisture barrier. Look for products with ingredients like hyaluronic acid for hydration, vitamin C for brightening, or aloe vera for soothing the skin.
Make sunscreen your everyday friend
Whether it's rainy or sunny outside, wearing sunscreen should be part of everyone's daily routine. Go for a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 or higher and water resistance. Additionally, look for ingredients such as avobenzone, mexoryl, zinc oxide, or titanium dioxide.
Give it a boost with retinol and vitamin C
If you’re dealing with the first signs of ageing, retinol is highly recommended. It is the active form of vitamin A in the body and combats fine lines and wrinkles by increasing the skin’s collagen. By stimulating the production of blood vessels underneath the skin, retinoids help to balance skin color and get rid of unwanted hyperpigmentation. On the other hand, Vitamin C works as a powerful antioxidant. It keeps skin looking firm, healthy, and vibrant by neutralising free radical damage from sun exposure and environmental irritants and lightening hyperpigmentation and melanin displacement. Vitamin C serum is best used in the morning, to prepare your skin for any contact with environmental stressors, and retinol is best used in the evening to restore your skin overnight.
Bio-remodelling for long-lasting effects
If you’re looking for long-lasting results, bio-remodeling, also synonymous with Profhilo, is particularly effective in treating skin laxity (sagging skin), dryness, and fine lines, making it a popular choice for people who want vibrant, radiant youthful skin. Porfhilois an ultrapure hyaluronic acid (HA), manufactured without the addition of any cross-linking chemicals. It is designed to be injected into the dermis in order to stimulate the skin to produce more of its own hyaluronic acid, collagen, and elastin. Profhilo can be used on any part of the body that will benefit from hydration with hyaluronic acid, such as the skin of the face, neck, decolletage, or back of the hand. The unique composition of high- and low-molecular-weight hyaluronic acid formulation makes it less dense and viscous than traditional dermal fillers, allowing it to spread evenly throughout the skin, delivering hydration and nourishment to the deeper layers of the skin.
Avoid smoking and alcohol
Smoking speeds up the ageing process of the skin. It damages collagen and constricts blood vessels that carry oxygen and nutrients to your skin, leading to wrinkles and premature aging. Similarly, alcohol dehydrates the skin and dilates the blood vessels. If you drink too much, you could develop broken blood vessels and rosacea, a skin disorder marked by redness and tiny pimples. Hence, consume alcohol moderately.
Drink plenty of water and opt for nutrient-rich foods
Staying hydrated is one of the easiest and best beauty treatments. Drinking adequate amounts of water helps the body eliminate toxins while providing you with healthier skin. You can also help nourish your skin from the inside out by eating more fruit, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, fatty fish, and legumes. Avoid consuming too many processed or refined sugars and foods with a high glycemic index (dairy, carbohydrates, and unhealthy fats) as they can cause skin inflammation, irritation, and breakouts, and may promote ageing. Additionally, by resting well enough and maintaining a sleep cycle of at least 7 hours, you can give your skin a chance to repair.
If signs of ageing are noticeable, or if your skin has been badly damaged due to sunburn or acne scars, it is important to consult your healthcare provider for appropriate advise.
(Dr. Simal Soin is the founder and chief dermatologist of Aayna Clinic, and Chief Medical Officer at Clinikally)