By: K. Aleisha Fetters
Honestly, a person can only repeat the exfoliate-moisturize-SPF routine so many times. If you want to look younger (and your grooming arsenal is already stocked), follow these 10 simple strategies to turn back the clock-no medicine-cabinet space required.
1. Have More Sex
Show us your "O" face. In one study, a panel of judges perceived people who had regular sex (four times a week, on average) to look 7 to 12 years younger than their actual age, according to Superyoung: The Proven Way to Stay Young Forever. Researchers say that sex spurs the release of human growth hormone, which may help timeproof your skin by promoting elasticity.
2. Eat Your Antioxidants
Two weeks to noticeably fewer wrinkles? Even the best moisturizers can't promise that. But in a new study from Unilever, participants who took fish-oil supplements and drank four antioxidants for 14 days straight significantly improved the depth of their wrinkles. Check out these antiaging foods to get started as soon as your next meal.
3. Crack a Smile
Sure, smiles fend off future frown lines, but they also make you look younger right now. When German researchers had men and women look at multiple photos of 171 people's faces, they were most likely to underestimate the age of people when they were shown smiling.
4. Lower Your Blood Pressure
One 2013 study found that people who look younger than their years tend to have lower blood pressure, while another new study in Molecular Psychiatry shows that depression, which researchers find compromises your immunity, may actually speed up the biological aging process.
5. Get Your Eyes Checked
Stop squinting! Every time you furrow your brows, a groove forms under your skin. As you age and your skin loses flexibility, these grooves become fine lines and flat-out wrinkles, says Boston dermatologist Ranella Hirsch, M.D. In fact, Hirsch sends 90 percent of her thirtysomething Botox patients to the ophthalmologist for a stronger prescription.
6. Hit the Gym for Better Genes
Sure, the fewer your chins, the younger your look, but a new study from UC San Francisco shows that exercise can also influence your DNA. Researchers found that twins who exercise for 30 minutes a day have DNA markers that look 10 years younger than those of their sedentary counterparts.
7. Get More Sleep
Beauty sleep prevents more than baggy eyes. One 2013 study found that the skin of bad sleepers has difficulty recovering from environmental stressors, UV radiation included. The result: increased signs of aging. Luckily, we know seven ways to get a better night's sleep.
8. Brush Up
Enamel darkens over time, and the darker your teeth, the older you look. So get brushing. Per a 2010 study in PLoS One, people who brush twice a day look approximately five years younger than those who brush just once. Of course, you can always make up for lost time with a good teeth-whitening system.
9. Grow Facial Hair
Guys used to grow whiskers to look older. But according to recent University of Southern Queensland research, beards and mustaches can help guys look younger by blocking up to 95 percent of the sun's UV rays. Plus, facial hair secretes natural oils that help keep skin moisturized and wrinkle-free. See more weird-yet-true health benefits of beards.
10. Skip the Cigs
It's no surprise that smoking ages you. What is surprising is just how much: Every 10 years of smoking resulted in a perceived extra 2.5 years of age, according to new research published in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. Researchers say that smoking is associated with more wrinkles between the nose and the mouth, lip wrinkles, sagging jowls, under-eye bags, and sagging eyelids-meaning pretty much your entire face.
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