Another Reason to Quit
In addition to its other negative health effects, smoking can also contribute to sagging skin. Smoking dries out your skin and has been shown to increase effects of premature aging, leaving you with lines, wrinkles and loss of skin tone way before your time [source: AgingSkinNet].
Causes of Sagging Skin
Skin that has lost its spring isn't the result of just one cause. Several factors are likely responsible for making your once supple skin appear tired and droopy.
The most common cause of sagging skin is aging. As you age, your skin loses the collagen and elastin, your skin's supportive connective tissue, that make it look soft, plump and youthful. In addition, facial muscles can weaken with age, which takes a toll too. Getting older means more exposure to the dreaded pull of gravity; which we know causes skin to sag a little further down with each passing day, [sources: Crawford, Skin Help].
Sun exposure is another reason for skin losing its elasticity. The sun's powerful rays damage skin cells which, over time, this can increase the effects of aging [source: Mayo Clinic]. It's a double-edged sword -- all that ultraviolet radiation you soaked up while getting the perfect tan was also breaking down your collagen and elastin, which can lead to saggy skin and wrinkles [source: Mayo Clinic].
Last but not least, weight loss, especially the loss of large amounts of weight over a short period of time, can cause skin to sag. Those who undergo bariatric surgery often find themselves stuck with skin and tissue too stretched out to snap back [source: eMedicineHealth]. People who lose a lot of weight quickly with diet and exercise may be disappointed by the amount of skin that is left sagging after all their hard work and discipline [source: Lakeview Dermatology].
Despite all of these skin-sabotaging factors, you are not necessarily stuck with skin that's gone slack. Read on to learn ways to defend against a droopy dermis.