Every carnival has an “age-guesser” – someone who will guess your age or you win the prize. They almost always win because they know on important secret: more that the face or hair, the skin on the hands can truly reveal a person’s age.
Most people get age spots, also called “liver spots,” at some time during their life. Age spots are flat patches of increased pigmentation that range from the size of a freckle to several inches across. They occur most often on the backs of the hands and the arms and sometimes on the face. Age spots are a harmless but annoying sing of the march of years.
You can’t prevent age spots entirely, but there are ways to make them less noticeable and also to prevent them in the future.
Here are some tips you may want to try.
Lighten the spot . You can help lighten ago spots until they’re barely noticeable by using over the counter products, called bleaching creams. A less expensive option is to make your won bleaching solution. Simple squeeze the juice from a lemon or lime – or use a blender to juice a red onion – and apply the juice from any of these to the spot with a cotton swab. Doing this twice a day for up to six weeks will substantially lighten or even eliminate small age spots.
Find a friend in vitamins. Some experts believe that getting more vitamins C and E in your diet is an excellent strategy for fighting age spots. There vitamins, which are known as “antioxidants,” help neutralize harmful oxygen molecules that damage cells throughout the body, including in the skin.
You can get plenty of vitamin C in foods such as citrus fruits, broccoli, and red and yellow peppers. And it is also available in tasty chewable tablets. Vitamin E is a bit trickier to get because it’s found mainly in wheat germ and cooking oils – foods that you wouldn’t eat big quantities of. To get more vitamin E, doctors often recommend taking a multivitamin that contains this skin protecting nutrient. Check the label to be sure.
What’s good on the inside of your body may also be good on the outside. You can purchase creams containing vitamins C and E at your pharmacy. Rubbed directly on the skin, they can be very helpful for erasing age spots.
Live in a shady world. Despite the name, “age spots” have less to do with aging than with sun exposure. Most doctors say that age spots are caused by a lifetime’s exposure o the sun’s ultraviolet rays, which break down collagen and cause permanent changes in the skin’s natural pigmentation. Because your hands and face the most sun, they are the places where age spots are most likely to form your best strategy is to avoid prolonged sun exposure, especially from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., when the sun’s rays are strongest. It’s also important to wear a sub block – preferably one with an SPF (sun protection factor) of fifteen or higher whenever you’re outdoors.
Wear protective makeup . The problem with sun blocks is that it’s not always convenient to use them. But you can get the same protection buy using make up and moisturizers that contain sunscreen. To get the best results, doctors recommend applying moisturizing sunscreens right after your morning shower, when they’ll help lock in moisture that gives your skin that healthy glow.