Premature aging – you can spot it a mile away. Do you have clients who complain that people think they are older than they really are and their skin is aging faster than they want it to? If you answered yes, then educating your clients on these three things can help them save their faces: their parents, Mother Nature, and their lifestyle.
Have a client take a look at their mom and dad. How is their skin texture and muscle tone? Plump and smooth or thin and rough? What about around their eyes and jawline – do they have visible creases and sagging? These can be clues for clients about how their skin may age. The signs of aging also vary between ethnic groups. You will notice that, based on your clients’ ethnic backgrounds, the rate of wrinkles and pigment changes vary. People who have more melanin have more photo protection when it comes to premature aging due to sun exposure. Overexposure to the sun’s dangerous ultraviolet rays can also lead to skin cancer and precancerous-like actinic keratosis. We all know what too much sun looks like: dry, leathery, wrinkled skin.
This brings us to Mother Nature and the great outdoors, or, in other words, the sun. The warm rays of the sun feel so good on that first day of summer after a long, cold, and dark winter. After all, sunshine is food for plants. Plants absorb nutrients from the sun and turn it into energy. So, how can something so good be so bad? It’s simple. When the sun damages an individual’s face, free radicals are released causing harm to the DNA in skin cells, leaving dark, uneven skin tone and a rough texture.
Chemical peels will help remove the topmost layer of skin and help lighten some of the hyperpigmentation caused by the sun. During this process, clients will need some recovery time where they are not exposed to sunlight. A chemical-free sunscreen is the most important tool clients need in their skin care arsenal to ensure glowing, youthful-looking skin. It’s the primary weapon in the fight against aging.
Now, let’s discuss lifestyle factors. Is the client a smoker? If yes, they can bet their bottom dollar they will inherit premature wrinkles. Smoking speeds up the normal aging process of skin. According to the Mayo Clinic, these skin changes may occur after only 10 years of smoking. Doctors say the more cigarettes an individual smokes and the longer they smoke, the more skin wrinkling they are likely to have. Cigarettes are loaded with thousands and thousands of toxic chemicals that contribute to collagen breakdown. Nicotine constricts blood vessels. When blood vessels are constricted, it cuts off oxygen and vital nutrients to the skin. Also, with the actual act of smoking, repeatedly pursing the lips to inhale the smoke and squinting the eyes to avoid the smoke from getting in them, those repetitive moves cause unnecessary fine lines and wrinkles.
And, finally are clients doing too many preventive treatments? This could also be causing them to look older. If skin care products sting or burn, they should stop using them immediately. When skin burns or stings, it means it is irritated. Irritated skin looks dull and also makes an individual look older. There is also a fine line between doing little tweaks and doing too much too soon when it comes to using lasers, Botox, and fillers.
The bottom line – clients should focus on the quality of their skin with an age appropriate skin care regimen that includes exfoliation, hydrating serums, and, most importantly, SPF protection. Teach them that it is never too late to develop a good skin care routine.
Annette Hanson is the founder of Atelier Esthétique Institute of Esthetics in Manhattan, a New York state licensing, NACCAS accredited skin care school, postgraduate facility, and the first United States aesthetics college to be recognized by London’s International Therapy Examination Council (ITEC). Her professional experience spans more than 30 years as a Paris trained aesthetician, waxing specialist, body therapist, salon manager, and spa consultant. A creator of two product lines, she is also a published author and sought-after lecturer at leading professional conferences worldwide. Hanson was instrumental in the development of the 600-hour curriculum for the New York state aesthetics license, as well as the written and practical exam. She served as educator on the Appearance Enhancement Advisory Committee to New York’s Secretary of State. She was inducted into the Aesthetics International Association (A.I.A.) industry legends in August 2009 by DERMASCOPE Magazine. She is on the leadership committee of the ASCP Skin Care School Council.