Ageing- The changing face of time 25th Jul 2018 | By Kesiree Naidoo Ageing, or “maturing,” is a natural process that happens to all of us and in fact begins the moment we are born! It affects all our organs including the skin. Sooner or later we start to notice this, particularly on our skin as it is the organ that we are most aware of. How we age is what makes the difference, and this depends on how you look after yourself and your skin from a very young age. Skin ageing is a complex biological process influenced by a combination of intrinsic and extrinsic factors. Intrinsic ageing is the type of ageing that we cannot really control. It is also known as chronological ageing and occurs as time passes. The genetic make up, cellular metabolic processes and hormonal influences of an individual determines how the passage of time will affect us. Intrinsic ageing is greatly influenced by external or extrinsic factors. Extrinsic ageing is caused by external factors and is really the only aspect of ageing that we can control. We can do this by using the right skincare products and supplements and by modifying our behavior. Smoking, sun exposure, air pollution, poor nutrition, chemicals and toxins are examples of extrinsic factors. The biggest contributor to skin ageing is sun exposure. We call this photo ageing. Extrinsic and instrinsic factors cause ageing but both these processes overlap particularly in the sun exposed areas and are difficult to distinguish. Chronologically aged skin appears thin and dry with fine wrinkles. Photo-aged skin appears leathery and lax with coarse wrinkles, broken veins and uneven pigmentation. So, as we age, we need to bear all of the above factors in mind when choosing the right skincare products, and change our behavior to ensure the signs of ageing are kept to a minimum.