Getting older is unavoidable, but that doesn’t mean you can’t look good while doing it. You may know that applying sunscreen and certain skincare products can help you look younger, but did you know there are health habits that make you look older? These bad habits can negate the benefits of your skincare routine. Here’s what to avoid in order to maintain that youthful glow.

  • Smoking

That smoking habit can really do a number on your skin, as well as your lungs. It causes deep wrinkles around the mouth due to the constant puckering. Cigarettes also hamper blood flow due to the carbon monoxide they contain, which depletes oxygen and causes dryness and discoloration. Your skin tone may look gaunt or have a gray cast. Your appearance is one of many reasons to kick the habit!

  • Extreme weight loss

It’s great to lose weight slowly and steadily and to commit to a healthy diet and exercise regimen. But rapid weight loss or yo-yo dieting, in which you lose lots of weight only to put it back on repeatedly, can age you. It’s theorized that constant weight loss and regain weakens the ligaments in your face that support tissue, leading to sagging. The best way to combat this is to maintain a healthy weight through proper nutrition and exercise.

  • Stress

It’s hard to avoid stressful situations; that’s part of everyday life. But chronic stress can take a toll on your appearance. Dark undereye circles, wrinkles, brittle nails and acne are just some ways stress can manifest itself. The best way to combat it is to manage the stress as best as you can, perhaps by employing a more positive outlook and finding an outlet that is enjoyable, such as yoga or knitting.

  • Sugar

Consuming too much sugar can age you. Sugar is converted to glucose in your bloodstream, which attaches to skin proteins. New molecules called advanced-glycation end products are formed, which affect collagen and elastin. Collagen and elastin help maintain skin’s firmness. So, all those collagen-boosting skincare products you are applying have a tougher job to do if you eat too much sugar! Try some sugar substitutes if you need a sweet fix.