Let’s get the bad news out of the way: No matter your skin type, your skin is susceptible to aging. As much as we’d all love to pause time and live peacefully with unscathed skin, time has a different agenda. Thinning skin, sagging skin, wrinkling skin—it happens to all of us.
Now here’s the good news: Using the right skincare ingredients and taking the right skincare precautions can drastically prevent and reduce these signs of aging. The sooner you commit to an anti-aging skincare routine, the more resilient your skin is to aging. You have the power to effectively reverse and prevent damage to your skin. And thin skin is no exception.
Here’s what you need to know about caring for thinning skin.
Causes of Thin Skin
A person who has thinning skin may have visible veins, blood vessels and tendons around different parts of the body. Unsurprisingly, thin skin is more prone to damage from minor injuries. People with thin skin often bruise easily and bleed relatively easily; the thinner the skin, the more vulnerable it is to tearing and bleeding on the skin’s surface and under the skin’s surface (bruising).
The usual skin care offenders that cause wrinkles, fine lines, and sagging skin are to blame for thinning skin too. Natural aging, sun exposure, unhealthy habits—these factors induce some of the least desirable qualities in our skin.
Thinning skin is common and typically doesn’t indicate the presence of a medical condition. On a cellular level, a lack of collagen and elastin are responsible for thinning skin. And what depletes collagen and elastin levels? All of the below:
- Natural aging
- Sun exposure
- Drinking alcohol
- Certain medications (corticosteroids, blood thinners, NSAIDs)
- Environmental pollutants
There are three main layers of the skin: the epidermis, the dermis, and the hypodermis. (“Dermis”, of course, means skin.) The epidermis is the outermost layer of the skin; the dermis is the second layer of skin beneath the epidermis, and the hypodermis is the deep skin layer beneath those two that maintains our skin’s hydration levels.
The mid layer of skin, the dermis, is where collagen and elastin are produced. In other words, the dermis is the Holy Grail of youth.
Over time, the dermis naturally starts to produce less collagen and elastin. Once we reach 20 years old, we actually start to produce 1% less collagen each year. This is why our skin starts to thin, become dehydrated and more fragile with age.
Older adults may notice dry skin and thinning skin on the face, hands and feet especially, because any part of the body that has naturally thin skin is more susceptible to continued thinning. As the dermis produces less collagen and elastin, the epidermis and hypodermis lose volume too. Thinning skin can be difficult to treat, because all skin layers are affected by collagen and elastin depletion.
It doesn’t matter how much we try to fight natural aging; it’s inevitable. That’s why it’s so important to develop an effective skincare routine that preserves the skin and shields it from the visible signs of aging as much as possible.
The last thing we want to do is speed up our skin’s aging—but lots of us are doing this without even realizing. Smoking cigarettes, drinking too much alcohol, and frying our skin in the sun without any protection are some of the worst habits for our skin.
Other causes of thinning skin can be relatively unavoidable. We don't have much control over the environmental pollutants we come in contact with each day. We may not have control over the side effects of a medication we have to take, and we certainly can’t control time. No matter how diligent we are in avoiding unhealthy habits and protecting our skin, there are still some skin-thinning factors we’re destined to face.
On the bright side, there are plenty of fundamental skincare ingredients, recommended by dermatologists, skincare experts, and those seemingly immortal people who just don’t age, to prevent or slow down the skin-thinning process.
Thinning Skin Treatments and Prevention
Fortunately, you can take skincare precautions to prevent your skin from thinning. And if your skin is already thinning, you can take action to stop it from progressing.
There are ways to help strengthen the skin to prevent it from easy bruising or tearing. Give your skin the support it needs (moisture, fortifying ingredients, minerals, nutrients, vitamins, and sun protection) to stop it from thinning, and increase its flexibility and resilience to damage.
We’ve said it a few times and we’ll say it again—vitamin C is absolutely essential for an effective, anti-aging skincare routine.
Vitamin C is a natural antioxidant, meaning it protects healthy skin cells from free radical damage. (Free radicals are the unstable molecules that form in our bodies when we’re exposed to harmful factors, like pollution, tobacco smoke, and UV rays.)
Electrons belong in pairs. When an electron within a molecule is missing its pair, it scavenges other healthy, stable molecules to steal an already-paired electron. (This starts a domino effect of unstable molecules destroying stable molecules.)
Free radical molecules break down the healthy skin cells necessary for collagen production and elastin production. The antioxidative properties of vitamin C enable this ingredient to neutralize unstable molecules (free radicals) by providing them with their missing electron.
Because unstable molecules and the destruction of healthy molecules are responsible for collagen depletion and thinning skin, vitamin C can effectively prevent thinning skin and slow its progression.
Studies have shown vitamin C to be a “highly efficient rejuvenation therapy” that significantly induces collagen production with minimal side effects with long-term use.
Sunscreen and Sun Protection
Sun exposure is high on the list of skin-thinning contributors—among plenty of other skincare concern lists. The sun’s UV rays can be incredibly damaging; dermatologists advise people to wear sunscreen (SPF 30 or more) every time they expose their skin to the sun.
Your skin is delicate, and the sun is intense. Sun damage increases your chances of developing skin cancer, causes free radicals to form in the body, and it also directly impacts collagen production. UV rays trigger the body to flip the switch from collagen production to collagen degradation. According to studies, collagen levels decrease within 8 hours following exposure to UV rays, and the dermis is deprived of collagen for 24 hours after UV exposure.
Needless to say, your skin needs protection to preserve its collagen.
- Apply sunscreen, and keep reapplying every few hours if you’re spending the day in the sun.
- Wear long sleeves to protect the fragile skin on your arms.
- Avoid tanning beds at all costs. (Tanning beds can significantly increase your chances of developing skin cancer. With regular tanning bed use, your chances of developing melanoma increase by 20%, squamous cell carcinoma increases by 67%, and basal cell carcinoma increases by 29%.)
A Balanced Diet
Have you heard the saying, “you wear what you eat”? This is especially true for our skin—the largest organ we have and the only organ we wear. When the body is malnourished or deprived of essential vitamins and minerals, this reflects through our skin health and the quality of our skin.
Our skin requires a balanced diet of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients to maintain its resilience, hydration, youthfulness, and suppleness.
Vitamin E is praised in the dermatology world as a skin renewing antioxidant with tons of skincare benefits. Vitamin E neutralizes harmful free radicals, but it also supports the hypodermis skin layer, responsible for storing fat and protecting the underlying cartilage, tendons, and bones. (When the hypodermis layer isn’t properly nourished, it loses volume, thins the skin, and reveals the underlying parts of the body.)
You can increase your vitamin E intake through nutrient-dense foods, such as:
To prevent thinning skin, or the progression of thinning skin, fill your fridge with edible vitamins and your skincare cabinet with topical vitamins. Here’s the ideal /skin regimen/ to revitalize your skin.
The Best /skin regimen/ to Treat Thinning Skin1. Begin with a gentle cleansing cream to wash the dirt, debris and pollution residue from your pores in the morning and night. Our facial cleansing cream uses a non-drying formula, enriched with Longevity Complex (organic superfood extracts fused with high-tech molecules) and Organic Maqui Berry with antioxidant active ingredients to combat free radicals and promote healthy skin cells. This antioxidative formula suppresses UV damage to slow collagen degradation and preserve the skin’s resilience.
2. In the morning, apply a vitamin C booster to strengthen the skin barrier and shield the vulnerable skin layers from oxidative stress. By stimulating the production of new collagen (the protein responsible for maintaining supple skin), this vitamin C booster protects the skin from UV rays throughout the day, reverses damage caused by photo-aging, and prevents the skin from sagging.
3. At night, apply a gentle (but intense) natural retinol serum to renew skin cells, fill fine lines, and reduce imperfections. Retinol, a derivative of vitamin A, is transformative. It renews the skin by promoting the generation of new skin cells and shedding old, damaged, dry skin cells. Retinol (and retinoids) stimulate collagen synthesis and accelerate cellular turnover to thicken the skin layers and increase the skin’s tolerability and stability.
4. Morning and night, moisturize the skin with an anti-aging face moisturizer to boost collagen synthesis. To treat thinning skin, collagen synthesis needs to be the common denominator in your skin care products. Tripeptide, anti-aging face moisturizer cream is formulated with Palmitoyl-5, a synthetic peptide engineered to increase collagen production, improve skin firmness, and drastically reduce signs of aging.
5. Finish your morning routine with a sunscreen (SPF 30 or more) that blocks harmful UV rays from reaching fragile skin layers. Sun damage is responsible for a number of skin care concerns, including hyperpigmentation, age spots, wrinkles, fine lines, thin skin, and easy bruising (to name a few). And more importantly, sun exposure increases your chances of developing skin cancer. Wear sunscreen everyday, and reapply it as needed to prevent irreversible damage to the skin.
Our skin changes as we age, and unfortunately, thinning skin is a part of those changes. As collagen and elastin production deplete, and our exposure to harmful factors accumulates over time, our skin needs an effective skincare routine to reverse as much damage as possible, and prevent further damage from taking place.
Adding powerful skincare products to your routine can provide long term benefits that preserve your skin’s youthfulness and prolong its healthy, plump radiance.