How to Prevent Wrinkles on Your Face


cute girl with facial mask“There are plenty of ways to try to erase the wrinkles that have already appeared, but why not prevent them before they ever show up? Klaus Vedfelt/Getty Images

Excuse the pun but, let’s face it, at some point during your long, healthy life, you’re going to get at least one wrinkle. And we’re pretty sure no man or woman has ever welcomed fine lines with open arms. While there are plenty of ways to try to erase the wrinkles that have already appeared—like Botox, lasers, and plastic surgery—there are things you can do right now to minimize the appearance of fine lines and slash the risk of wrinkles in your future. Here are easy ways to keep skin smooth and wrinkle-free for as long as you possibly can.

Start with a healthy lifestyle. "The single biggest thing with aging is our genetics, says Andrew Ordon, MD, board-certified plastic surgeon, and co-host on ‘The Doctors.’ "You’re born with certain DNA and that determines your aging probably more than anything else." But beyond that, the easiest way to prevent aging is by maintaining an overall healthy lifestyle. That means eating a healthy diet, only consuming alcohol in moderation, getting plenty of sleep, exercising, minimizing stress, being careful in the sun, and of course, avoiding cigarettes and recreational drugs. [source: Dr. Ordon]

Avoid the sun. Sun damage is one of the biggest causes of wrinkles, fine lines, and skin looking older sooner than it should be, says Dr. Ordon. "We can see the changes of sun damage in the skin; it adds more wrinkles." Use a moisturizer with that contains broad-spectrum SPF 30, even if you’re just sitting in the car or your office all day, suggests Mona Gohara, MD, associate clinical professor, Yale School of Medicine, Department of Dermatology. Sun exposure through car and office windows can cause damage. Protect your eyes with sunglasses, wear a hat, and avoid those times of the day when the sun is most intense, says Dr. Ordon. [source: Dr. Ordon]

Eat a wrinkle-erasing diet. Add more salmon, soy, and fruits and veggies to your diet. Salmon is a potent source of an essential fatty acid known as omega-3, which helps keep skin plump and youthful looking, as well as preventing wrinkles and inflammation. [source:] Recent research has shown that people taking a soy-based supplement showed signs of improved skin structure and firmness after just six months of use. [source:] You know that it’s always a good idea to add more fruits and veggies to your diet, but it’s the antioxidants in your produce that fight damage caused by free radicals (unstable molecules that can damage cells), which helps skin look younger and more radiant overall. Diet vices like sugar and alcohol should be consumed sparingly as they can dehydrate and dull your skin’s complexion, make wrinkles more apparent. [source:]

More Tips to Staying Wrinkle-free

Follow a good skin-care regime. It’s never too early to start a skin-care routine. Taking care of your skin by washing it daily (no going to bed with makeup on), using a moisturizer with SPF, applying a night cream or moisturizer, and exfoliating two to three times a week will help prevent wrinkles. Exfoliating stimulates your skin to produce more collagen and elastin, says Dr. Ordon.

If you’re not already using a product with retinols, it might be time to start. These ingredients have an active impact on wrinkle formation and are good to add to your nighttime skin care routine. Using a retinol product can help promote collagen production, and decrease collagen breakdown, says Dr. Gohara. If you maintain a continuous skin-care program at a relatively early age, you are going to have less aging changes. "Those deep lines form after just prolonged long-term use of those muscles leading to the deeper lines. If you start treating them early on, the deeper lines are never really formed," says Dr. Ordon.

Don’t shed those last 5 pounds. While it’s not good for your health to be overweight, that extra plumpness in your face can make your look younger and less wrinkled than a very thin person who’s around the same age.

Many of those healthy habits you employ to look your best in your skinny jeans — sticking to a low-calorie diet, minimizing fat, working out frequently — can actually result in changes on your face as you near 40.

When you lose weight, your face shows it just as much as your waistline. Weight loss can decrease facial volume, which can cause eyes to look slightly sunken (and perhaps tired), cheekbones to be more defined, and skin to lose its elasticity and firmness. When you’re at a low BMI and don’t have much fat on your body, you’re missing the very thing that helps plump out lines and wrinkles. [source:]

And if you need one more reason to stop yo-yo dieting, remember that the fluctuations in weight can also affect skin’s elasticity, says Dr. Ordon. As you lose weight, your face thins out and the likely lines are to show up. So ditch the goal of hitting your high school weight again — you’ll look younger with a few more pounds on your frame.

Stop frowning and furrowing. While you may think that scrunching up your face, frown lines and worry lines are wrinkle myths, Dr. Ordon says they can affect the way your aging skin looks. "There are certain people that talk animatedly and they are constantly raising their brows, frowning, squinting, or making faces," says Dr. Ordon. When you make certain faces, you’re using your face muscles and creating lines in your skin that don’t need to be there. (Note: We do support smile lines!)

Become a better sleeper. When you don’t catch enough zzz’s each day, the body produces excess cortisol, a stress hormone that breaks down skin cells. Getting enough sleep makes your body produce HGH (Human Growth Hormone), which helps keep skin thick and overall healthy, according to the article. [source:] The way you sleep matters, too! If you sleep on the same side every night, you’re creating creases on one cheek that, over time, become more permanent, says Dr. Ordon. He suggests making sure you have good pillows, and soft pillowcases. You might want to even try silk pillowcases as they’ve gotten some buzz online for being better for skin. [source:]

Lots More Information

Related Articles

  • 5 Ways to Prevent Wrinkles
  • 10 Home Remedies for Wrinkles
  • Do skinny people get more wrinkles?


  • Mona Gohara, MD. Personal correspondence. September 3, 2013.
  • Andrew Ordon, MD. Personal correspondence. August 28, 2013.
  • Kimberly Goad. "Look Young: Your Fanny or Your Face?"
  • "How To Prevent Wrinkles"
  • Colette Bouchez. "23 Ways to Reduce Wrinkles"


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