Skin Tightening 101: How to Make Skin Youthful Safely
As you get older, you may start to notice fine lines appearing around your eyes and the corners of your mouth. Although wrinkles are a natural part of aging, they may make you feel insecure or unattractive. But treatments like botox and facelifts can be expensive, intrusive, and risky. Luckily, there are ways you can tighten your skin without having to turn to such harsh measures. Peptides and other natural treatments can give your body the nutrients it needs to keep your skin elastic and wrinkle-free. Read on to learn more about peptides and other natural skin tightening solutions.
Why Do Wrinkles Form?
Before we dive into the various skin tightening agents you can use, let’s talk some about wrinkles and why they happen. Your skin is made of three primary layers: the epidermis, the dermis, and the subdermis. Your dermis is composed, among other things, of fat, elastin, and collagen fibers that, when you’re young, help your skin to spring back into shape after it’s stretched.
As we age, collagen production slows and eventually stops, and the elastic fibers that keep your skin smooth begin to break down. We start to lose the fat layer that keeps our skin firm, and our skin becomes thinner, causing it to show more wrinkles. Your skin also dries out as you age, and as those elastic connections break down, it falls into wrinkles, especially around your eyes and mouth.
Why We Hate Wrinkles
Wrinkles are a normal part of aging, so why do we work so hard to stop them from happening? Scientists believe this is due in part to evolutionary cues; people who are older can’t hunt or fight as well, and in many cases, they are no longer able to produce offspring. From an evolutionary standpoint, they become nothing more than a burden on the rest of the group, and they do not make fitting mates.
But these days, wrinkle phobia doesn’t come so much from evolutionary cues as from corporate greed. In 2020 alone, the anti-aging industry (targeted primarily at women) made more than $52 billion. The more corporate manufacturers can make us fear wrinkles, the more money we’ll spend on products that claim to reverse them.
What Is Collagen?
We mentioned that collagen is one of the primary compounds responsible for keeping your skin elastic when you’re young. But did you know that this compound is, in fact, the most abundant protein in your body? Collagen makes up about a third of your body’s total protein composition, comprising your bones, muscles, tendons, ligaments, and, of course, skin.
Collagen is the “glue” that provides structure to all these various parts of your body. There are four types of collagen, two of which are found in your skin. As we age, our bodies produce less and less collagen until, at age 40, collagen production stops entirely and our bones and skin begin to become weaker and more brittle.
What Are Peptides?
If you start looking into ways to keep your body’s collagen supply strong, you’ll quickly run across the term “peptides.” Peptides are short strings of amino acids, the building blocks that make up protein, including our DNA. In general, a peptide may contain anywhere between five and twenty amino acids strung together.
Because peptides are so small, they’re a little easier for your body to absorb than large protein chains. You can absorb them into your bloodstream more quickly, which allows them to move into your skin and organs. Peptides can come from a variety of sources of plant and animal protein, including eggs, meat, and more.
How Peptides Work
So what do peptides have to do with collagen and keeping your skin young and elastic? Collagen peptides are short, broken-down pieces of the larger collagen protein that are easy for your body to absorb. Taking these peptides can help stimulate your body to produce more collagen, since it has the building blocks at the ready.
Full collagen proteins are too large for your body to effectively absorb, especially through your skin. But when you use smaller peptides, you signal your body that it needs to take these building blocks and make more collagen. This can help to give you more of the compounds you need to keep your skin elastic and tight after your natural collagen protection has slowed down.
Other Benefits of Peptides
In addition to helping to tighten skin, collagen peptides can have a number of other benefits for your body. Since collagen is such a central part of your body’s composition, increasing your collagen levels can make nearly every part of your body stronger. In particular, it may help to make your nails and hair stronger by increasing their elasticity.
Collagen peptides can also help to improve wound healing, as your body will have more of what it needs to knit your skin back together. They may also help to prevent age-related bone loss, since collagen is one of the primary building blocks of your bones. And some early studies indicate that peptides may help to increase your strength and muscle mass by giving your body what it needs to build more muscle tissue.
How to Use Peptides
There are dozens of different ways to use peptides, depending on what your goals are. For skin tightening, you may want to look for skin creams, serums, masks, and cleansers that contain peptides. It may be best to go for a cream or serum that can be left on the skin for longer periods of time to encourage maximum absorption.
Peptides products are usually safe to use up to twice a day, but always follow the directions on the packaging you buy. It’s also a good idea to talk to your doctor before you begin taking or using any new supplement. This is especially important if you plan to use an oral supplement to get your peptides.
Peptide Side Effects
Like any treatment option, peptides can have a variety of side effects, especially if you don’t take them properly. In the case of topical peptide products, you may notice a rash or skin irritation after you use the product. If this happens, stop using the product immediately and talk to your doctor.
However, the biggest side effect risk with peptides is that you may not get any effect at all. As we’ll discuss more in a moment, manufacturers may sell products that claim to be peptide products and don’t actually contain any peptides at all. Even if their products do contain peptides, there’s no guarantee that they’ll contain collagen peptides that will give you the benefits you want.
Cautions When Buying Supplements
In the United States, there is no regulatory body that oversees the quality of supplement products. While the FDA ensures that any bottle labeled “ibuprofen” will actually contain a safe and effective dose of ibuprofen, the same doesn’t go for supplements. This means that any manufacturer can sell you any substance and label it peptides with almost no consequences.
It’s very important that you always buy your supplements from providers you trust. Reputable providers will ensure that their products contain the substances they claim to, nothing more and nothing less. You’ll also be able to trust that you’re getting the supplement in the dose they claim.
Natural Sources of Peptides
In addition to store-bought supplements, there are also some natural sources that can give you the peptides you need. We mentioned that the peptides in your supplements come from natural sources of plant and animal protein. There’s no reason you can’t go directly to the source to get these peptides if you wish.
You can find peptides in dairy products such as eggs and milk, as well as in meat, fish, and shellfish. You can also get peptides from legumes such as beans, lentils, soybeans, and others. Some seeds also contain peptides, including hemp, oats, flax, and what.
Other Methods of Preventing Wrinkles
Aside from taking peptides, there are a variety of things you can do to prevent and even reduce wrinkles. The first and most important is to protect your skin from the sun and UV rays whenever possible. Wear a hat when you’re outdoors on sunny days, and find a good daily sunscreen that you can work into your daily skincare routine.
If you smoke, quitting can help to reduce the number of wrinkles you have. It’s important to stay moisturized; your skin is your largest organ, and making sure you get enough water every day will help keep it refreshed and nourished. Eating a vitamin-rich diet can also help get your skin the nutrients it needs to continue looking young and vibrant.
Other Natural Skin Tightening Agents
There are also some other natural agents you can use to help keep your skin young and elastic. Aloe vera is known to have a variety of benefits for the skin, including helping to heal sunburns when they do happen. Taking aloe vera supplements can help to restore your skin and reduce the appearance of wrinkles.
Using a mashed banana as a mask may help to improve your skin health, as can using a cream containing egg whites. Certain “superfoods,” including avocadoes, ginger, salmon, sweet potatoes, and walnuts are thought to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles. And eating olive oil can have a variety of benefits ranging from improving your heart health to keeping your skin vibrant.
Other Supplements to Reduce Wrinkles
Finally, there are some additional supplements you can take to optimize your skin’s health and elasticity. Vitamin C is widely known to help improve immune function, but a topical vitamin C gel can help to heal sun damage. Certain essential oils, including argan, frankincense, jojoba, lavender, and sandalwood are also popular skin remedies.
Certain minerals may also help to give your body the nutrients it needs to keep your skin healthy. Zinc and selenium are two of the most important since they help to block UV radiation and prevent skin damage. You can get zinc in almonds, peas, oatmeal, and cheese, and selenium in yogurt, bananas, and spinach.
Making Peace With Your Skin
Although all of these treatments we’ve mentioned can help to prevent or slow wrinkle development, there’s a deeper problem they won’t solve. As a society, we are terrified of aging, and women, in particular, are shamed for showing their age. All the peptides in the world won’t address the inherently patriarchal structure that tells us that our primary value is in the elasticity of our skin.
No matter which wrinkle-reducing regimens you use (or don’t), try to make peace with your skin as it is. All that wrinkles show is that you’ve lived a life full of rich experiences and that you have the wisdom only time brings. Love your skin the way it is and embrace every line, wrinkle, and crow’s foot as a sign that you are gloriously human and vibrantly alive.
Learn More About Skin Tightening Products
Although wrinkles are a natural part of getting older, many people prefer to do what they can to minimize them. Using peptides can be a great way to give your body the building blocks it needs to make more collagen and keep your skin elastic. You can also use a variety of other methods, supplements, and natural agents to keep your skin healthy for years to come.
If you’d like to find the best skin tightening products available, check out the rest of our site at Lyf Fit. We have information about all the natural supplements and products you’ll ever need. Check out our peptides articles today and start getting your body healthy the natural way.