Skin Care Tips Enemies of Good Skin

Recognizing a smoker's face We are all familiar with what some doctors call "smoker's face": fine lines around the mouth from puckering lips; lines near the eyes from squinting through smoke; a gray-tinged complexion caused by nicotine-slowed blood circulation; thin skin, slackness, and dryness. But did you know that smokers also have higher rates of skin cancers and slower wound-healing rates than non-smokers, and are less able to utilize skin-friendly, antioxidant vitamins such as vitamin C? Moreover, cigarette smoke contains high concentrations of nitrogen dioxide ozone, a compound that damages the DNA your skin cells need to efficiently create new cells. With so much going on in one face, a smoker can appear up to 20 years older than her nonsmoking counterparts. For instance, it is common for smokers in their 40s to resemble nonsmokers in their 60s. It's no wonder that, after sun exposure, dermatologists list smoking as one of the biggest causes of skin damage.

Several studies have shown that smokers' skin is an average of 40 percent thinner than nonsmokers' skin. Researchers say that this is due to restricted blood supply and the deterioration of collagen and elastin in the skin - both caused by cigarette smoke. Heavy drinking If you're at all health conscious, you know you should go easy on the alcohol - a few two-drink nights each week is plenty.

That's because long-term alcohol abuse has been associated with liver disease and breast cancer. Yet the effects of a single night's binge can appear on your skin as early as the morning after, in the form of dehydration, or water retention under the eyes. In addition, heavy drinking saps B vitamins from the body - especially folic acid and thiamine. Skin needs these B vitamins to maintain health, so a deficiency can cause a pale, sallow complexion, dryness, slackness, and unexplained breakouts. Because alcohol dilates the blood vessels nearest your skin, heavy drinking can stress and weaken small blood vessels to the point that some may break, causing visible and unsightly broken veins on your face. Lastly, a few too many drinks can cause neglect.

After all, who feels like taking off makeup, washing the face, and putting on skin-care products when the room is spinning?.

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