Hack Your Wrinkles

Unless you're Dorian Gray, you will be wrestling with wrinkles at one point in your life. In fact, having them removed or reduced has become a multi-billion dollar business.

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Although facial expressions like smiling, squinting or frowning may cause wrinkles to check in at an earlier age – each time you use a facial muscle, a groove forms under your skin – most people rightly identify them as products of aging. Ultraviolet radiation from the sun and smoking can also cause you to wrinkle (and so appear to be years older than you are).

But what can be done about them?

Admittedly, it's a tough row to hoe. As your skin ages, it loses collagen. That's the protein responsible for keeping your skin taut. Not only do you begin to lose what you had, but your body actually begins producing less of it. There's no cure for that, but there are a number of wholly natural approaches to softening the symptoms.

Bananas may be a questionable food nutrition-wise, but there is no doubting their value as a wrinkle-fighter. Make a mask of mashed bananas and a teaspoon each of orange juice and plain yogurt. Wear it for 15 to 20 minutes. The potassium will hydrate your facial skin cells, and the applied vitamin B can actually retard aging. The vitamin E present in the concoction will fight free radical damage and goose your skin's resistance to ultraviolet ray damage.

If bananas aren't your cup of tea, consider an egg mask. Combine one egg white with a teaspoon of fresh lemon juice and half a teaspoon of honey and apply the goop to your face. The mixture helps to tone, tighten your skin by reducing excess oil secretion from your pores. The protein assists in tissue repair and growth, and the potassium will moisturize your skin as it does with the banana mask.

Grow an aloe vera plant in your home and take advantage of one of Nature's best skin healers. The gel found inside the plant's leaves has been used to soothe sunburn and repair damaged and dry skin for centuries.

The most time-consuming skin mask you can make – and arguably the most effective – requires a blender or food processor. Puree half a cucumber with mint leaves and mix in half a cup of Greek yogurt. Refrigerate it to make it cool. The blend of vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, folic acid, vitamin C, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, and zinc will hydrate, tighten, tone and also lighten your skin. Regular application of this mask will protect the skin on your face from dryness, peeling and cracking, while guarding it from inflammation and free radicals – known agents of aging.