The #1 cause of premature ageing and age spots

3 min read

The #1 cause of premature ageing isn’t partying too hard – or smoking – even though they are not on the “approved list” for good skin.

The #1 cause for premature ageing (and age spots) is actually something we can’t avoid (unless you wish to be a cave dwelling hermit or Vampire, that is).

90% of skin ageing (including age spots) is caused by the sun

The very scientific sounding term “Photo Ageing” simply refers to how your skin ages due to exposure to light. This can be from the sun or other tanning devices.

It’s pretty simple. The more time you spend in the sun, the older you will look.

This is because UVB and UVA rays damage your skin and alter its structure.

  • UVB – damages the outermost layer of your skin. When we get caught out it can be seen and felt as the dreaded sunburn. But it doesn’t always have to result in a burn to cause premature aging.
  • UVA – damages the deeper levels of your skin. It goes past the epidermis and reaches the dermis where it can harm collagen and elastin. Bad news for plump, taut and toned skin.

What are the early signs of premature ageing?

Early signs of premature aging include:

  • Age spots
  • Fine lines and wrinkles
  • Loss of skin tone
  • Rough texture
  • Lips that are taut and lack colour
  • Leathery sagging skin
  • Spider veins and broken blood vessels appearing around your nose, cheeks and neck

The areas most affected by the sun are your hands, face, lips, neck and décolletage. So you shouldn’t forget about these areas when applying sunscreen or skincare products.

We don’t want to scare you but a great way to see how you skin is faring is to compare the skin under your arm to the skin on your hands. The difference you see is mostly caused by sun damage.

Luckily, there are things you can do to help

Phew, we were worried there as well.

Since UV damage is an external cause of premature ageing, it can be prevented and repaired so you don’t look 20 years older than you really are.

Prevention – These have been drummed into us so we will only do a quick recap. Be sun smart by wearing sunscreen (even in winter) and suitable clothing when outside. And don’t use solariums or tanning beds.

Repair – There are so many dermatological treatments that you can have done to repair photo ageing like botox, laser therapy, dermabrasion and chemical peels. But they are not our style.

We prefer to keep things a little simpler (and natural).

Vitamin C and Vitamin E

The antioxidant knights in shining armour for repairing UV damage are Vitamin C and Vitamin E. They increase your skin’s ability to repair the damage caused by UV rays. Vitamin C is also known to help fade age spots and even out skin tone.

Vitamin C can be found in the Happily Ever Vitamin C Eye Serum and Perfectly Happy Light Anti Oxidant Cream.

Vitamin E is in the TLC Intensive Repair OilHappily Ever Vitamin C Eye Serum, and our Over the Moon Rich Repair Cream.

Vitamin A (but not retinoids)

Vitamin A in the forms of retinoids are also a staple when helping to repair photoageing.

We don’t use straight Vitamin A in any products because it is synthetically produced and there are risks with too much vitamin A when pregnant.

We use ingredients like Apricot Oil which have high amounts of Vitamin A still in its complex natural form.

Find Apricot Oil in the Happily Ever Vitamin C Eye Serum.

Gentle Exfoliation

Keep your skin cells turning over with gentle exfoliation. This will help keep your skin smooth and with even tone. Our very favourite exfoliator is the award winning Spoonful of Sugar Exfoliating Scrub.

The Tickled Pink Perfecting Tonic and Raindrops on Roses Hydrating Tonic have botanical extracts that are alpha hydroxy acids (AHA) which provide some gentle exfoliation.

You can also use the Pig In Mud Mineral Mask as an exfoliator by waiting for your mask to dry, then using wet hands give your face a good ol’ massage with the clay. 

If you need a little more exfoliation “oomf” you can use the Cloud 9 Deep Cleansing Balm for an at home microdermabrasion treatment!

Skin cancer awareness

Since we have been talking about UV damage we need to mention that if you notice anything with your skin that you are unsure or concerned about then get it checked. Especially if the area is dry, red, scaly or has changed in shape or size. Better safe than sorry, as they say!

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