Preparation H ends eye puffiness. Milk and honey masks will keep wrinkles at bay. Don't make that expression -- your face will freeze that way! We'll try anything, it would seem, to try to keep the passing years from showing on our faces. We dread wrinkles. They're inevitable, thanks to the aging process and gravity, but there are a few at-home tricks to help prevent premature aging and reduce the appearance of fine lines, creases and wrinkles.
First, let's learn a little about our skin, and then the aging process.
There are two types of protein that keep our skin firm and youthful: collagen and elastin. They work together with oil-secreting glands in our skin that keep skin soft, and a layer of fat beneath that adds contour to our bodies. As part of the natural aging process, our bodies produce less collagen and elastin as well as less oil, and the fatty layer begins to thin out -- a combination that produces dry, thin, saggy skin.
Free radicals also contribute to wrinkling. Free radicals are formed during a normal aerobic process -- a chemical reaction that uses oxygen and releases the energy that cells need to function -- and are called unstable atoms (or molecules), because they have either lost or gained an electron during that chemical reaction. Exposure to the sun's ultraviolet radiation (UV rays) and other environmental factors like tobacco smoke trigger the body to produce free radicals.
While you can't win against Mother Nature, you can put up a good fight against free radicals. Next, we'll talk about antioxidants, our body's weapon against these unstable atoms.