Shedding Light on Dark Circles and Wrinkles

older woman wrinkles face close up

Many of us were raised to show others respect by making eye contact when greeting, talking, or shaking hands. It is no wonder that one of the first things we notice about others is their eyes. We notice color and shape, and when looking into someone’s eyes, we will notice wrinkles or dark circles under their eyes. Unfortunately, for some individuals, these conditions typical with aging may be hereditary and appear more prominently or earlier than others. So, what causes wrinkles and dark circles around the eyes? How skin ages and reacts depends greatly on skin type, and there are other factors that a licensed dermatologist could go over with you in a consultation.

Causes of Eye Wrinkles

The skin under the eyes is the thinnest of the body, which leaves it vulnerable and sensitive to external and internal factors. The most common eye wrinkle factors are age, sun exposure, poor lifestyle choices, and, of course, hereditary.

Age Typically Increases Under-Eye Wrinkles and Lines

As we age, the thin, fragile under-eye skin becomes more sensitive and loses elasticity. As we age, our skin naturally produces less oil, leading to drier skin that appears more wrinkled. The natural fat in our skin diminishes over time, which creates loose and saggy skin over time. Whether concerned about pronounced lines and crevices or more subtle signs, working with an experienced and licensed dermatologist ensures you can achieve the desired results.

Sun Exposure Will Speed Up the Signs of Aging

If you have not heard it a million times, the sun is not your skin’s friend. The ultraviolet (UV) rays speed up the aging process and are one of the primary reasons behind premature aging in people. The harmful UV lights break down connective tissues in your skin, depeleting the natural fibers (elastin and collagen) in the deep layers of skin, called the dermis. The lack of connective tissues causes the skin to lose flexibility and become weaker, resulting in sagging and wrinkling prematurely. The more dangerous UV rays someone is exposed to, and repeatedly, will continue to intensify the appearance of unwanted signs of aging.

Tip: Always wear sunscreen, even on cloudy days!

Lifestyle Choices Affect Signs of Aging

As people age, it often becomes a reality that we can’t live the same as we did twenty or thirty years ago without adversely affecting our body’s health. The skin is the body’s largest organ, so it won’t surprise anyone that our lifestyle choices will ultimately affect how our skin appears. Some of the most common things that undeniably have adverse effects on the skin are smoking, diet, and repeating facial expressions. Smoking is terrible for your body and will accelerate the signs of aging. Smoking adversely affects the collagen production of the body, which is why those who smoke have more prevalent wrinkles and often experience deeper crevices in more areas on the face and neck than those who do not.

What you put in your body will shine through your skin, for better or worse. Diets heavy in sodium and those not consuming enough water will dehydrate their skin, leaving them more vulnerable to the signs of aging. Daily moisturizer and eating a healthy and balanced diet will improve your skin’s texture and smoothness.

You may have heard “smile lines” when referencing someone with lines around their mouth. There is some truth to lines and wrinkles appearing due to repeated facial expressions, whether smiling, frowning, laughing, or sipping a straw. When you use a facial muscle, grooves form under the skin’s surface. As we age, because our skin loses its flexibility, it won’t spring back to where it was before. Losing flexibility and elasticity means that repeated facial expressions can create permanent lines and wrinkles on your face.

How To Protect Your Skin and Counter Signs of Aging

Although lines, wrinkles, and darkness under the eyes are common, it does not mean you can’t shine and overcome any insecurity these signs create in your life. Number one is to protect yourself from the sun every single day. Even if you soaked yourself in coconut oil and went tanning every day when you were young, it is never too late to be mindful of the increasingly dangerous rays of the sun and make a decision daily to protect your skin. Many products, including makeup and moisturizers, have sunscreen in them. One of the surest ways to help the signs of lines and wrinkles is moisturizing! These products are purposefully designed to add moisture and trap it into your skin. The plumping from added moisture decreases visible lines and creases. Overall, make positive lifestyle choices regarding diet and stop smoking – this is the best thing for your skin and health!

If you are concerned about lines, wrinkles, or dark circles under your eyes and don’t know where to start, contact Buckhead Dermatology today for an appointment. Dr. Straugh has been helping clients throughout Atlanta for decades and is knowledgeable about assisting clients to overcome insecurities around the signs of aging. You will always meet with Dr. Sherrie Straughn and have an advocate to find affordable skincare solutions.