From clothing and shoe choices to sleep and even sex habits, you may be adding years to your looks. These quick fixes may help.
Wear the right glasses
According to a survey conducted by Jacksonville University researchers, wearing glasses in general increases how old people think you are, per U.S. News & World Report. For those who need to wear them, investing in a nice pair that frame your face could take years off your look. Cat’s eye frames are especially known to make people look younger by lifting the face, while aviators negatively focus attention downward, according to Next Optical.
Swap out your orthopedic shoes
Sacrificing style for comfort by wearing orthopedics is an easy way to look older, but you can have both. Stylist Shauna Hartley recommends brands like Aerosols, according to The List. Here are 13 outfit tricks to look instantly younger.
Wear the right bra
An appropriately fitted bra is essential, no matter your age. Finding the right fit not only provides comfort, but also has a slimming effect, according to Best Health. An ill-fitting bra with straps that dig into the skin or too-tight cups that cause flesh to bubble up can make you look as though you’re wearing old, outdated, or super-worn garments.
Work on your posture
Not only can poor posture lead to headaches, neck pain, and breathing problems but it can also make you look older, the Mayo Clinic reports. Slouching in your chair or hunching over your computer are just two ways you might already be practicing bad posture. Sitting up straight and checking your posture throughout the day are two easy ways to look younger and more confident.
Exercising more can contribute to things that help you look younger, such as your mood and sleep (more on that later). Working out actually slows down aging on a cellular level. According to a study published in the journal Preventative Medicine, people who do regular, vigorous exercise have longer telomeres-shorter ones are related to various age-related diseases. Looks-wise, exercising keeps skin younger, and it may also reverse some skin aging in people who are new to regular exercise, the New York Times reports. But if you’re exercising outdoors, be sure to use sunscreen.
Get enough sleep
Beauty sleep isn’t just a buzzy phrase; Cosmopolitan reports that getting too-little sleep leads to a dry complexion, breakouts, redness, and dreaded dark circles-all of which add years to your looks. Chester Griffiths, MD, FACS, double board certified, Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery & Fascial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica also advises having a set sleep schedule. “Regulate sleep patterns and prepare for bed with a 15-minute pre-sleep routine to close the day,” Dr. Griffiths says. He also advises removing electronics from the bedroom to make sure they don’t interfere with your sleep quality.
Sleep on your back
Yes, getting enough shut-eye is important, but how you’re sleeping is just as key. Sleeping on your side or your stomach promotes skin damage, wrinkles, and sometimes results in indentations in the skin that mimic wrinkles. Sleeping on your back promotes less face swelling, fewer fine lines, and helps your body relax, enhancing the cell turnover that gets rid of dead skin cells, according to Dermstore.
Dehydration makes you look older by drying your skin, thus making you look tired. Carry a reusable water bottle so you can always stay hydrated. The daily general recommended amount of water for women is 91 ounces of total water, from all beverages and foods, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Moisturize your skin
As people age, skin becomes thinner and loses the ability to retain moisture. That’s why adding a moisturizer to your routine is so important, much as hydrating by drinking water is good for your body. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, moisturizers help prevent tearing and bruising, and they temporarily stretch the skin, reducing the look of wrinkles for a short time.
It’s never too late to protect your skin with sunscreen, according to Eugene Elliot, MD, a cosmetic and reconstructive surgeon at MemorialCare Orange Coast Medical Center in Fountain Valley, California. “You can’t change what you were dealt with genetically, but you can take control of other factors which help you stay younger looking,” Dr. Elliot says. His favorite sunblocks are mechanical, contain zero zinc or titanium oxide, and block the UV damaging rays effectively with frequent application. Not only can wearing sunscreen prevent aging, but a study sponsored by the Johnson & Johnson Skin Research Center found that people who applied a daily moisturizer with SPF 30 for a year saw significant improvements in hyperpigmentation, texture, and skin clarity, Byrdie reports. Make sure to cover any exposed skin, such as your neck, hands, and chest-not just your face!