Rules for a Beautiful Future

Skin is much more than beautiful. Skin is amazing. Stop and think about it. The same skin that a baby is born with expands at an incredible rate, providing protection for a lifetime. Although your skin is remarkable, it still gets wrinkled, discolored, and rough with advancing age.

However, learning about the aging process—the mechanical, biological, and environmental factors that affect your skin over time—can help give you an effective strategy for protecting the skin that protects you. To enjoy a truly beautiful future, incorporate the following simple rules and use scientifically developed products that feature the latest breakthroughs in skin care technology.

Mechanical Aging
Your parents warned you not to make faces "because your face might stay that way," and they were right. The facial movements you repeatedly make over a lifetime create creases that deepen with age and translate into worry lines on the forehead, frown lines between the eyebrows, and squint lines around the eyes.

Other behaviors that contribute to this kind of mechanical aging are improper skin care (using water that is too hot or cleansers that are harsh and drying), losing and gaining weight rapidly and repeatedly, smoking, and excessive alcohol intake. Even everyday actions like sucking on a straw and squinting can undermine your best skin care efforts.

RULE 1: Make skin friendly lifestyle choices and avoid wrinkle causing behaviors to prevent future impressions. To repair existing fine lines and creases, supplement your skin's natural collagen with products designed to help promote collagen production.

Biological Aging
Looking older is also a result of changes that naturally occur over time. These changes include increased skin dryness from a decline in oil production, roughness from a reduction in cell turnover, and a natural ebb in skin self-healing brought on by a decrease in the production of new collagen and elastin. These processes are all regulated from within the body through a complex interaction of hormones and cell messengers, which slow with advancing age.

RULE 2: Keep your skin functioning at its youthful best by identifying the best diet, nutritional supplements, and skin care products to help compensate for biological changes.

Environmental Aging
Summer lovers beware: sun exposure causes many of the wrinkles associated with aging due to the damage it does to the skin's collagen and elastin fibers—key structural components of healthy skin. UVA radiation also damages the skin's pigment cells, leading to an overproduction of brown pigment and the appearance of dark splotches sometimes called liver or age spots. These changes are collectively termed photoaging.

Pollution, weather, and the specific environment in which you live also influence the way your skin responds to the aging process. The damaging effects of UV radiation are increased by changes in altitude, low humidity, and wind. Extreme weather can be a challenge for your skin, too. The increased oil production and excess perspiration that often occur in a warm, humid environment heighten the potential for sweat related skin irritation such as acne. And although breakouts are temporary, the scarring that can result is not. Likewise, cold temperatures and dry air damage the skin's protective barrier through increased moisture loss.

RULE 3: Shield your skin from the negative effects of the sun by using sunscreens that provide both UVA and UVB protection. In addition, your comprehensive skin care program should include products formulated for your specific skin type and environment to protect your skin from irritation and weather related dryness.

Practice a Winning Combination
Learning the rules of the game is the best way to begin defending your skin against damage caused by repeated behaviors, biological breakdowns, and the environment. Optimize your skin's look and longevity by following the three simple rules outlined above, and by taking advantage of the scientifically formulated and technologically advanced skin care products on the market today. Play to win, and ensure a future of beautiful skin.

Zoe Diana Draelos

M.D., F.A.A.D.

Dr. Draelos worked extensively with Nu Skin to create the Nu Skin® Profiler and conducted clinical research on the use of Tru Face™ Revealing Gel with Polishing Peel,™ as well as studies on Tru Face™ Line Corrector and Tru Face™ IdealEyes.® She serves on the board of directors for the American Academy of Dermatology and has a research interest in cosmetics, toiletries, and biologically active skin medications. Dr. Draelos is a practicing, board certified dermatologist in High Point, North Carolina, and a clinical associate professor of dermatology at Wake Forest University School of Medicine.