Ageing is a natural process which impacts our skin, but rather than trying to turn back the clock, is it time for a new attitude to growing older, pro-ageing rather than anti-ageing? In this month’s journal, we talk about the benefits of having a different mindset, embracing the ageing process and seeing the positives.

Ageing is a natural and inevitable process. Our skin changes as we get older, becoming thinner and losing elasticity. We may also develop age spots, wrinkles, and fine lines. While these changes can be challenging to accept, it’s important to remember that they are a natural part of life. Let’s celebrate that we have lived and experienced so much and view our wrinkles as a sign of a life well-lived. With those age-related wrinkles come wisdom and self-assurance that few would trade for youth.

Taking a more balanced approach to ageing, and making a series of small changes along the way, can keep us looking and feeling our best. The concept of pro-ageing allows for all different approaches to the ageing process, with less pressure to eliminate the signs of ageing, but also less stigma around interventions.

There are many benefits to pro-ageing. One of the most significant advantages is that it allows us to accept ourselves and our skin and bodies as they are. Instead of trying to fight against the ageing process, we can learn to embrace it and feel comfortable in our own skin. This can lead to improved self-esteem, confidence, and mental health. Embracing the ageing process can help us to make healthier lifestyle choices. We may be more likely to take care of our skin if we view it as something to cherish and protect.

Better choices can include eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly, and avoiding harmful habits such as smoking and excessive drinking. These lifestyle choices can have a significant impact on our skin health and overall well-being.

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The concept of pro-ageing embraces the following core principles:

Do as little as possible for as long as possible. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. Enjoy being and feeling young. In your teens, 20s and early 30s a simple skincare regime and plenty of sun protection are really all you need.

A little help goes a long way. You should aim to look like the best version of yourself, staying true to your own unique features. Overdoing procedures and surgery is a surefire way to end up looking eerily ageless or like an uncomfortable caricature of yourself.

In-clinic treatments are just a small part of looking your best. Lifestyle factors such as diet, exercise and hydration can have a significant impact on our skin health. Maintain an at-home skincare regime based on products that are gentle and nourishing, such as natural oils and serums, and tailored to your skin.

Protection from the sun is vital to keeping our skin healthy and glowing as we age. Sun damage is one of the main causes of ageing, and it’s essential to protect our skin from harmful UV rays. Wear broad-spectrum sunscreen every day, even on cloudy days, to protect against both UVA and UVB rays. Avoid prolonged exposure to the sun, seek shade, and wear clothing that covers your skin, a broad-brimmed hat and sunglasses. These simple steps can help prevent premature ageing and dangerous skin cancers.

Pro-ageing is not just a philosophy, but a lifestyle. Ageing is a journey that, hopefully, we all go through together. Instead of feeling ashamed or embarrassed about our wrinkles and fine lines, embrace them as a sign of our unique experiences and individuality. By taking a pro-ageing approach, we can celebrate the beauty of ageing and feel confident in our own skin. Accepting ourselves as we are, we can lead healthier, more sustainable lifestyles and achieve healthy, glowing skin at any age.