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Is there any feeling worse than looking in the mirror and noticing a new wrinkle or fine line on your face? In a world where smooth, youthful, flawless skin is the ultimate ideal, finding a fresh wrinkle can be pretty discouraging.
Luckily, we’re not helpless against fine lines. When it comes to preventing and treating this issue, we have tons of options. Continue reading for everything you should about dealing with fine lines, wrinkles, and other signs of aging.
Fine Lines vs. Wrinkles
Have you ever considered the distinction between fine lines and wrinkles? It seems like every anti-aging moisturizer, cream, or serum on the market promises to reduce both of these issues. Likewise, fine lines and wrinkles almost always get grouped together under the “signs of aging” umbrella.
Of course, this raises one question: is there really a difference? Or have we simply been hoodwinked by another marketing ploy?
Well, you’ll be happy to hear that fine lines and wrinkles are not the same thing—not exactly.
Here’s the difference: basically, fine lines are mild creases in the skin that tend to appear in regions of facial movement. For example, they might show up around your eyes or your expression lines (the lines you see when you smile or frown).
On the other hand, wrinkles are slightly more severe. They’re deep-set, which just means that wrinkle creases go deeper into the skin than fine-line creases.
Fine lines tend to appear when we’re somewhat young, and deep-set wrinkles join the party as we age. In fact, fine lines tend to turn into wrinkles as our skin loses elasticity. This is why treating fine lines is so important—we don’t want to let them get out of hand.
At this point, you may be wondering what this thrilling new information means for you. Should you be dealing with fine lines differently than wrinkles? Will you have to change your finally-perfected skincare routine?!
The answer: probably not. Fine lines and wrinkles require very similar treatment, and it all begins with one thing—prevention.
First Things First: Preventing Fine Lines
Sadly, no one gets to stay young forever, no matter how much we’d like to. Aging is inevitable, and so are fine lines. One day, you’re going to wake up and notice one of those pesky little lines has made its debut on your face.
Here’s the good news: if you take care of your skin, it’s entirely possible to delay that moment for many years. With the proper protection, you can keep your skin looking smooth and youthful for way longer than you could ever imagine.
Because deep-set wrinkles often originate as fine lines, preventing fine lines from forming in the first place is one of the best ways to achieve that goal. So, continue reading for our tips on how to protect your skin from the unfortunate side effects of getting older.
At this point, if you’re not wearing sunscreen all day, every day, what the hell are you doing? When it comes to skincare, wearing sunscreen is rule number one.
Sun exposure can cause a whole array of skin damage and negative consequences. Of course, the initial risk of overexposure is sunburn (and all the discomfort and peeling skin that comes along with it). Likewise, serious sunburns may cause permanent skin damage. Beyond that, sun damage could even lead to serious, life-threatening health issues.
So, clearly, there are a million reasons to wear sunscreen every day, and preventing fine lines is just one of them.
By applying SPF 30 or higher each day, you can help your body ward off those annoying signs of aging. A good sunscreen blocks the sun’s UV rays which, in turn, prevents the breakdown of collagen and the formation of wrinkles and fine lines.
Well, that’s enough lecturing—we know you treat your skin right with daily SPF. And, if sunscreen isn’t part of your everyday routine right now, please reconsider. There's still time to change your ways.
Use Glycolic or Salicylic Acid
When you’re in your 20s, wearing sunscreen and avoiding tanning beds is one of the best ways to avoid early onset fine lines. If you can do that, the chances of seeing those bothersome lines before your next decade of life are pretty slim.
However, if you’re hoping for an extra layer of anti-aging protection (who isn’t?), you may want to consider adding glycolic acid or salicylic acid to your skincare regimen. Both of these ingredients are excellent exfoliators, and they should keep your skin smooth and youthful.
We know skincare acids can be pretty confusing, but here’s the Sparknotes summary: Glycolic acid is an AHA, or an alpha hydroxy acid. It strips away dead skin cells, moisturizes, and helps thicken the skin and promote collagen production in the long run. Because of its small molecular size, it gets deep into the skin, making it super effective.
On the flipside, salicylic acid is a BHA, or a beta hydroxy acid (you guessed it). Like glycolic acid, it’s an exfoliator, but it’s also good for treating acne, reducing inflammation, and decreasing redness.
So, depending on your skincare needs, choose one of these acids to add to your daily regimen. You may just enjoy one more benefit: fighting fine lines!
Use a Retinoid
Moving on from our 20s, let’s discuss retinoids. Ideally, you should incorporate this ingredient into your routine starting in your thirties.
Retinoids promote cellular turnover, which exfoliates the skin and also repairs DNA. So, if you have sun damage or fine lines, a retinoid could help reduce those issues.
Certain retinoids, like Tretinoin, have been approved by the FDA to treat wrinkles. Tretinoin is a prescription product, but there are over-the-counter options available, too. OTC retinoids are gentler but still effective.
Even if you’re lucky enough to have flawlessly smooth skin in your 30s, using a retinoid is still a solid idea. It should help keep your skin smooth and prevent fine line formation—the ultimate goal.
Get Plenty of Vitamins
Unlike adding a new product to your routine, this tip is not so easy to accomplish on a whim. One way to avoid fine lines and wrinkles is to eat a balanced, vitamin-rich diet.
Obviously, changing your whole diet just like that is impossibly difficult. However, if you can manage to get some anti-inflammatory, antioxidant-rich foods in your life, your skin may just reap the reward.
Some of these foods include green tea, salmon, avocados, pomegranates, and vegetables (like carrots, leafy greens, broccoli, and more). Try replacing red meat with one of these healthier options to treat yourself to those much-needed antioxidants.
Keep Your Face Relaxed
Again, this one is tricky—keeping your face relaxed as much as possible. Frequent squinting, frowning, scowling, or lip-pouting often leads to premature wrinkles/fine lines.
Next time you're feeling stressed, angry, or sad, be sure to take note of your facial expression. If possible, try to relax your face, even if the rest of you is still feeling high-strung.
Avoid Smoking At All Costs
We all know that smoking is damaging health-wise. Like sun exposure, smoking can lead to a whole host of serious health issues.
You may be shocked to learn that one of the risks of smoking is getting premature fine lines and wrinkles. But seriously, tobacco smoke is bad news for your collagen and elastin production. So, when you smoke regularly, your skin loses elasticity and strength.
Along those lines, the heat and physical motion of smoking (pursing your lips) may also contribute to early signs of aging on the skin.
There you have it—another compelling reason to quit or avoid smoking altogether.
Next Up: Treating Fine Lines
So, we’ve provided a pretty serious list of ways you can prevent fine lines and wrinkles. This evokes a fairly obvious question—what if you already have fine lines? Are there any retroactive methods of diminishing them?
In short, yes. There are ways to get rid of fine lines that are relatively mild or superficial. On the contrary, however, if those lines have deepened into wrinkle-level territory, you’ll need to visit a medical specialist for an in-office procedure. At-home remedies, like skincare products, won’t do you much good.
In addition, we should note that the tips mentioned above are still vital, even if you’ve already developed wrinkles or fine lines. Adhering to those preventative measures should ensure that your lines or wrinkles do not worsen.
OK—without further ado, let’s delve into some of our best suggestions for treating fine lines:
Let’s begin with the big guns: Botox. You’ve probably heard of it, but in case you haven’t, here’s a basic explanation: Botox is a wrinkle muscle relaxer that temporarily paralyzes your facial muscles, leaving you with smooth, wrinkle-free skin.
The treatment is considered to be safe and minimally invasive, but it can be expensive. However, if you’re really struggling with fine lines or wrinkles, Botox might be a good move. Just be sure to talk to a professional to get all the key information before making your decision!
Get a Facial
Botox is a well-known solution for wrinkles and fine lines, but not everyone feels comfortable with the procedure. If you’re interested in a medical treatment, but you want to avoid traditional Botox, we have another option for you: getting a facial. And no, we’re not talking about a regular old face massage.
There are facial treatments available that use a combination of Botox, dermal fillers, vitamins A and C, and a mix of other nutrients to get rid of fine lines and wrinkles. They use micro-needles to inject the surface of the skin with this mixture.
On the whole, the process is less invasive than normal Botox, and it provides an array of benefits, like tightening the skin, decreasing pore size, and reducing the look of fine lines.
Do Facial Yoga
Now it’s time to shift into an entirely different category of fine-line treatments—AKA, at-home remedies. Like with most skincare issues, there are plenty of ways to reduce fine lines from the comfort of your own bedroom.
One of those methods is facial yoga. This treatment involves giving yourself facial massages that target different areas of the face, like the forehead, cheeks, or eyes. If you practice facial yoga regularly, it may help you achieve smoother, healthier skin in the long run.
You can find tons of facial yoga tutorials on YouTube, TikTok, and beauty blogs. Why not give it a shot?!
Try Gua Sha
Gua sha, another massage technique, has been around for thousands of years. It originated in China as a full-body massage method, and it has recently seen a surge of popularity in the West as one of the latest beauty trends. Some people report that it does wonders for skin, including fighting signs of aging.
To reap the full benefits of gua sha, you’ll need to learn the proper techniques and get yourself a few gua sha tools. If you can perfect this massage method, you might just be able to improve the appearance of those irritating fine lines.
Fine Lines in Summary
Aging is just a part of life—there’s no getting around it. No matter how hard you try, your body will eventually start to show signs that you are, in fact, aging. The same goes for fine lines and wrinkles. One of these days, it’s going to happen. So sorry to break the news to you.
However, this is no reason to give up entirely. As you now know, there is so much you can do today to prevent the premature formation of fine lines. Likewise, when you do notice those lines appearing, you’ll have a few options for treating and, hopefully, getting rid of those lines.
We hope this article has helped calm your fine-line nerves. Now, check out Supergreat for more guides, product reviews, beauty conversations, and much more. We want to hear from you, so come and leave a review for one of your faves!