Smoking, Your Skin and Your Looks – The Cold, Hard Facts

Smoking, Your Skin and Your Looks – The Cold, Hard Facts


If you smoke you are already very well aware of the fact that you really shouldn’t. It increases your risk for all kinds of diseases, many of them fatal, scars your lungs and can even decrease your energy levels and libido. However, for many of those who do still smoke these are risks they take, often figuring that there are lots of other ways these days that their health can be impacted (including just pure fate) and the effort to quit is just too much.

Nevertheless, no one can actually say that smoking is in anyway harmless, so here’s a new way to look at the habit; it can ruin your skin and impact your overall appearance considerably. Not beating about the bush, here’s how:

Bags Like Suitcases

No one likes the look of bags under their eyes, especially as they are so difficult to even begin to conceal. And the major cause of those nasty bags is a lack of restful sleep, something that smokers report four times as often as non smokers do. Why the lack of sleep? Researchers believe that it’s the beginnings of nicotine withdrawal that causes the problem but whatever the root cause a chronic lack of sleep is never pretty.

Aging Before Your Time

There is nothing wrong with wrinkles; on an cute octogenarian. Premature skin aging is not even remotely fun though, and yet by continuing their habit on average smokers end up looking 1.4 years older than their nonsmoking peers with noticeably more lines and wrinkles appearing earlier than they really should. This is because smoking hampers the flow of blood to face, depriving it of oxygen and lessening its ability to repair itself and its elastic qualities that should be helping to keep the wrinkles.

The Scar Factor

A number of research studies have shown that smokers take longer to heal wounds than their none smoking counterparts. In terms of the complexion, that means that any blemishes (even small ones) will take longer to disappear and are far more likely to leave behind noticeable scarring because of this. This is a real problem for those who suffer from even mild acne, as even if it is effectively treated a person’s smoking habit can result in scarring that never needed to happen.

The Glow’s Gone

Often a smoker’s skin, even under makeup, just looks unhealthy. In fact a study conducted in 1985 came up with the characteristics that they found, after studying thousands of unretouched photographs, made up what they termed ‘smoker’s face’. These included ‘wrinkles, gauntness, and a gray appearance of the skin’.

Cigarette smoke contains a significant amount of carbon monoxide which actually displaces the oxygen in the facial skin which will leave it discolored and dry. Cigarette also depletes the skin of many of the nutrients that it needs to thrive, especially Vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that should be protecting skin from free radicals.

Sick Skin

Smokers have been warned over and over again that smoking significantly increases their risk for lung cancer as well as cancer of the mouth, throat and esophagus. What they are less aware of is that it also increases the risk for developing skin cancer. A recent study found that smokers are four times as likely to develop the second most common form of skin cancer, squamous cell carcinoma, than non smokers regardless of their ‘sun consumption’ habits.

If you are a smoker who wants to quit, you can try with an e-cig starter kit as some researches recommend them.

5 Big Skincare Myths That Need to Be Busted

5 Big Skincare Myths That Need to Be Busted


Technically skincare should be a fairly straightforward thing. But, perhaps because it is such a huge industry, it’s not and there are so many myths and misconceptions around the subject that it’s actually hard to know if you are doing the right things at all.

Many of the myths are rather harmless, simply designed to make you spend a little more at the beauty counter. Others however are actually downright harmful, and if believed could actually ruin your skin, and your looks. Here are some of the biggest that really need to be busted for good:

Tanning Beds are OK as Long as They Don’t Give Off UVB Rays

As little as five or six years ago women all over the world were happily heading to tanning salons as many as three or four times a week to bake themselves under the heat of tanning lamps because they believed that attaining that elusive but oh so desirable ‘sun kissed glow’ in this way was safer than sitting out in the sunshine. Then came a rash of research and reports that demonstrated that no, that is not the case at all.

And yet some tanning salons still maintain that their booths are safe because they filter out the so called ‘burn rays’, UVB light. However, contrary to popular belief the UVA rays that tanning booths emit are very bit as likely to cause premature skin aging, wrinkles and most worryingly, skin cancer. The simple fact is a spray tan, or an at home self tanner, are the only safe ways to get a tan and save your poor skin from all kinds of problems.

Popping Pimples Clears Them Faster

If a pimple is really bugging you, both by the way it looks and the way it feels then in a way it seems to make sense that popping it to release the pus would help get rid of it faster. However, even it feels kind of good doing so is not a good idea. When a pimple is popped some of the pus actually gets driven deeper into the skin, resulting in a pimple that lasts longer and, in many cases, will leave a scar and cause more pimples by spreading the pus under the skin.

Expensive Skincare Products are Always Best

Expensive skin care products are nice, but they are not always the best, or the most effective option available, no matter what all of those very glossy magazine ads say. In addition often the ingredients in a swanky skincare product and its drugstore counterpart are pretty much the same, you are just paying for a well known name and a fancy package. When shopping for skincare products it’s far more important to go with what works for your unique skin than being swayed by glitzy gimmicks.

Anti Aging Creams Really Do Erase Wrinkles

There are a thousand and one ‘anti aging’ creams and serums on the market these days that all come along with pretty much the same claim; that they can ‘erase’ wrinkles. But they really can’t. Photoshop is about the only truly effective wrinkle eraser out there that you can truly rely on!

That is not to say that these products are totally useless. All of them plump up the wrinkles, lessening their appearance temporarily and those that contain retinol can indeed make that effect a semi permanent one to a certain extent, but no cream is going to get rid of them all for good.

You Only Need Sunscreen in the Summer

Many people do now have themselves trained to make sure that their skin is nicely protected by sunscreen during the summer months whether they are on the beach that day or not. But once the summer’s over they put away their SPF products until the colder months are over. Mistake. Even on a cloudy, or freezing cold day the suns rays, and all of that skin unfriendly UV radiation, are streaming down from the sky, whether you can actually see it or not, so sunscreen, especially for the delicate facial skin, needs to be permanent part of your skincare routine 365 days a year.