Before you unwrap another straw, did you know that pursing your lips around one actually causes wrinkles? If you want to minimize the signs of aging, there are a few habits you need to master early on. "In their 20s, people think they're invincible and that they're never going to age, but that is when you really need to develop good habits, because it will last you a lifetime," said Dr. Debra Jaliman, board-certified dermatologist and author of Skin Rules: Trade Secrets from a Top New York Dermatologist. Below you'll find the secrets to maintaining that youthful glow for longer. So when it comes to your skin, maybe 30 is the new 20 after all.
1. It's never too early to start antiaging. Which probably means you're reading this too late. "I always say the sooner the better because if you know you're going to care about lines then you might as well start sooner," says Dr. Jaliman. The first step is using a broad-spectrum sunscreen, which will protect you against aging caused by the sun's UV rays.
2. Even if you are using antiaging, you're still aging. Here's some bad news: "We're losing everything as we age, unfortunately, so there is no way out of it," says Dr. Jaliman. "You're going to lose collagen and elastic tissue, so your skin is going to get saggier. Your skin is going to get rougher, and the pigment isn't going to be as even. Also, all those things get worse with sun damage."
3. Skipping sunscreen is the biggest mistake you ever made. "People say it's so time consuming, but really just like you brush your teeth every day — that's 30 seconds." Of all the antiaging creams and treatments you can buy, sunscreen is the most inexpensive and effective route. So, you'll want to get in the habit of wearing SPF 30 every day.
4. Don't skip the neck (and hands). "A lot of times I see people with a young-looking face and old-looking hands and neck," explained Dr. Jaliman. "Those three areas are chronically sun exposed, so whatever you do for your face you also want to do to your hands and neck."
5. Drinking from a straw does cause wrinkles. Your mom might have passed on this advice when you were a teenager, and it turns out this beauty myth is all true. "Any kind of repetitive muscle movement will cause wrinkles," admits Dr. Jaliman. "Smile every day and you get a smile line, or if you frown you're going to get a frown line, but what are you going to do? You can't stand like a mummy!" This problem is easily solved by using a retinol at night around the mouth and on the forehead.
Get more useful antiaging tips when you keep reading.