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The Habits You Need To Drop To Avoid Wrinkles

By Megan Griffith

Reviewed for medical accuracy by Dr. Jaggi Rao,
MD, FRCPC Double board-certified dermatologist

Let’s face it – we will all be getting wrinkles one day. However, there are some everyday habits that you can adjust in an effort to delay the little creases1 as long as possible. Things like taking off your makeup daily and hydrating as much as possible are among the small tweaks in your routine that can really help your smooth skin last longer. So, what are the habits which affect your skin?

Sunscreen can protect your skin from wrinkles and hyperpigmentation.

Applying And Removing Make Up Too Aggressively

If you want a lasting smooth face, it is a good idea to treat it with the care it deserves. Yes, your sensitive facial skin can be affected by the way you apply your make up, as well as by the way you take it off. For instance, tugging at the area around your eyes when applying eyeliner can deeply affect the smoothness of your face in the long run. Puffy skin, disrupted blood vessels, and eventual wrinkles, can all result from this habit. And let’s be honest, that is a fairly easy habit to kick.

What is more, the way you take off your beauty products can also adversely affect your complexion. If you take off your make up on a daily basis, you have already won half the battle against the little creases. However, removing make up must be done in a careful, gentle way2. This means that tugging or rubbing your skin to take off your beauty products ASAP at the end of a busy day can be contributing to the development of wrinkles. Instead, try to think of removing make up as a beauty ritual, which will pay off in the long run.

Scrubbing Your Skin Too Hard

Although cleansing your face on a daily basis is key to maintaining a pure, healthy glow, scrubbing, or rubbing your make up off too vigorously can harm your face. Using a harsh make up remover or pressing too hard when using facial scrub can also take off the natural oils which protect and moisturize the skin. Instead, opt for mild cleanser and scrub, and use soft cotton balls without pressing too hard.

Using Many Anti-aging Products At The Same Time

Less is more when it comes to using products to slow down the signs of aging. While beauty bloggers may advertise a seemingly endless stream of miraculous cosmetic products, with a new one coming out each week, the simple truth is that not all of them work. More significantly, combining all of them in the hopes of fresher skin will not ensure that your face remains creaseless forever. Using make up remover, face wash, face mist, three kinds of moisturizer and a scrub all at once will likely not momentously improve your complexion. Instead, opt for one or two skincare products which are tried and proven to work. For healthiest-looking results3, look for creams containing antioxidants, retinols, and sunscreen. Do not forget that having radiant skin is less a result of a concrete product, and more-so the consequence of a healthy lifestyle.

Sleeping In The Wrong Position

Speaking of healthy living, sleep is one of the best gateways to healthy-looking complexion. Getting less than the recommended amount of hours of slumber per night can provoke the onset of wrinkles. Still, even if you are getting the golden eight hours of sleep each night, the way you sleep can be affecting the quality of your skin4. For instance, lying on your side or on your stomach can cause your face to be in an unnatural position for hours on end. Instead, try to sleep on your stomach or on a smooth, satin pillowcase.

Forgetting The Sunscreen

Applying sunscreen on a daily basis is one of the easiest habits ensuring long-lasting smooth skin5. Unfortunately, it is also one of the habits that are easiest to forget. Make sure to lather sunscreen on cold days, too, and do not forget to apply it even when you plan on getting to your destination by car. In fact, Americans predominantly get skin cancer on the left side of their face because that is the side reached by the sun when driving. Keep a travel-size bottle of sunscreen in your car and remember to use it on a daily basis. While a tan may seem attractive, wrinkles caused by a sped up aging process are not.

Thinking That ‘Organic’ Make Up Will Save Your Skin

While organic food can be healthier for your skin and body, make up that claims to be organic often ultimately contains similar ingredients to ‘regular’ products. Indeed, ‘organic’ make up may have various benefits, such as being manufactured without causing environmental pollution, etc. However, such products will not necessarily help your skin become ageless. Focus on make up which contains the specific organic ingredients that your face needs6, such as vitamins and antioxidants.

Abandoning A Product Too Soon

While short attention spans are common in our digital age, it is important to commit to cosmetic products for a long enough time for them to begin working. Specifically, it may often take several months for an anti-aging product to work its magic. Granted, do not hesitate to toss away a gel or a serum which is conflicting with your skin and causing irritation. However, a few weeks may not be enough time to allow your complexion to get used to a specific product, and to benefit from that.

Using A Computer For Too Long

This one may seem like a difficult habit to kick, as many of us work computer-based jobs. Still, straining to look at a screen for hours may cause wrinkles to appear prematurely7. Opt for sitting no less than half a meter away from your screen, and make sure to take a break every half an hour or so. This will allow both your skin, as well as your eyes, to have a much needed rest before the next round of staring at the screen.

Avoiding Your Eye Doctor

Ensuring that your vision is still perfect or that your reading glasses’ diopters are up to date is a beneficial habit on its own. Still, skipping your annual eye doctor appointment can affect your complexion, too. When your vision is not ideal, you may furrow your brows and squint your eyes. Doing this too often may lead to lines in the area of your eyes, which may deepen with time.

Smoking, Of Course

Smoking is a bad habit for all kinds of reasons and you have probably heard most of them. However, as 480,000 Americans still die because of their cigarette cravings, you may need a reminder, as well. Smoking causes your skin to appear more colorless8 and dull. Invest in some nicotine patches instead and rejoice as your skin rejuvenates.


  1. Hadi H., Awadh A.I., Hanif N.M., Md Sidik N.F., Mohd Rani M.R., Suhaimi M.S. The investigation of the skin biophysical measurements focusing on daily activities, skin care habits, and gender differences. Skin Research and Technology. 2016;22(2):247-54.
  2. Skin care for acne-prone skin. Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG). 2013.
  3. Ganceviciene R., Liakou A.I., Theodoridis A., Makrantonaki E., Zouboulis C.C. Skin anti-aging strategies. DermatoEndocrinology. 2012;4(3):308–319.
  4. Anson G., Kane M.A., Lambros V. Sleep Wrinkles: Facial Aging and Facial Distortion During Sleep. Aesthetic Surgery Journal. 2016;36(8):931-40.
  5. Hughes M.C., Williams G.M., Baker P., Green A.C. Sunscreen and prevention of skin aging: a randomized trial. Annals of Internal Medicine. 2013;158(11):781-90.
  6. Bowe W.P., Pugliese S. Cosmetic benefits of natural ingredients. Journal of Drugs in Dermatology. 2014;13(9):1021-5.
  7. Arjmandi N., Mortazavi Gh., Zarei S., Faraz M., Mortazavi S.A.R. Can Light Emitted from Smartphone Screens and Taking Selfies Cause Premature Aging and Wrinkles?. Journal of Biomedical Physics and Engineering. 2018;8(4):447–452.
  8. Cho Y.H., Jeong D.W., Seo S.H., Lee S.Y., Choi E.J., Kim Y.J., Lee J.G., Lee Y.H., Bae M.J., Chin H.W. Changes in Skin Color after Smoking Cessation. Korean Journal of Family Medicine. 2012;33(2):105–109.
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