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Prior to outlining the causes of wrinkles, it is important to delineate the layers of skin which are affected by the aging process. The skin is made up of three layers; namely the epidermis, dermis and subcutaneous tissue. The epidermis is the top layer of skin which acts as the ultimate protection against external concerns such as UV, pollution and wind. The dermis is the second layer of skin, which contains the connective tissue. This connective tissue includes collagen which provides the skin with strength and elastin fibers to give the skin its spring or elasticity. Fat cells are contained in the subcutaneous tissue and enable the skin to look plump by providing insulation.
Wrinkles and Age
Epidermal cells deteoriate and become thinner with age. Skin appears noticeably thinner due to thinning cells and this allows moisture to be released instead of being retained in the skin. What does this mean? Dryness of course. What’s worse is that there approximately a twelve percent decrease in epidermal cells each decade, impairing the skin’s ability to heal itself. There is a high significance in the effects of aging on the dermal layer. As the elastin fibres exhaust, collagen is slowly reproduced, sagging in the skin is caused as well as modifications in the structure of the skin. Sebum is decreasingly produced by the sebaceous glands and as a result, there are less sweat glands. Once again, dryness in the skin becomes apparent. Fat cells get smaller in the subcutaneous layer. Wrinkles and sagging become more noticeable as the fat cells are unable to make up for the destruction in the outer layers.