Skin Elasticity: 8 Effective Tips
“Retinol can help restore elasticity, for more supple, glowing, youthful skin.”
Do you feel like your skin just doesn’t bounce back the way it used to? It could be because your skin has lost some elasticity.
As your skin ages, it’s normal to see some signs of aging like fine lines. But if you’re starting to see sagging skin or deep wrinkles, then you might have an elasticity problem on your hands.
Luckily, we have experience with aging skin. Here are our top eight tips on how to keep your skin plump and beautiful for years to come.
What Is Skin Elasticity?
Skin elasticity describes your skin’s ability to bounce back after stress. Different stressors that your skin might be exposed to include sun damage, pulling and tugging, and oxidative stress from free radicals.
Skin elasticity is heavily linked to both collagen and elastin levels. Collagen is a protein found in the middle layer of skin called the dermis, and it is well-known for keeping your skin soft and supple. Your body naturally produces collagen inside connective tissues known as fibroblasts, but you can also get collagen from outside sources.
On the other hand, elastin is specifically designed to help your skin stretch and maintain its shape. In fact, elastin fibers are 1,000 times more stretchy than collagen. Elastin lives with collagen in the dermis, and it is also a protein.
You can test your skin’s elasticity by pinching some skin on the back of your hand. If your skin takes a few seconds to flatten out, you may have low skin elasticity.
What Causes Loss of Skin Elasticity?
Over time, it’s natural to see your skin lose some of its elasticity. After all, your skin is your body’s largest organ, and it’s constantly exposed to the environment. It’s bound to develop some wear and tear. The process of losing elasticity is called elastosis.
You may experience lower skin elasticity if you’re low on collagen. Collagen decreases naturally with age, and many women see lower levels of collagen during and after menopause.
You can also prematurely lose collagen through different lifestyle factors. Excessive drinking, smoking, sun exposure, and a diet high in processed foods are linked to premature collagen depletion.
You might also see more wrinkles and sagging skin if you lose elastin. Similar to collagen, elastin loss is a normal part of the aging process. Also, similarly to elastin, you might lose more elastin than normal if you participate in excessive alcohol use and smoking. You can also lose elastin through sun damage and an unhealthy diet.
8 Skincare Tips To Support Elasticity
If you’ve lost some elasticity, don’t worry. You may be able to restore elasticity to your skin through dietary supplements, skincare products, and firming devices.
1. Up Your Collagen Supplements
Your body naturally produces collagen, but your body may not be producing enough if you've lost elasticity. Thankfully, you can get more collagen through your diet.
Foods high in collagen include bone broth, fish with the skin on, and chicken. You can also eat foods that are high in vitamin C, since vitamin C supports healthy collagen production. These foods include broccoli, citrus fruits, blueberries, and leafy greens.
2. Switch to Retinol
Retinol is a type of retinoid that you can easily get over the counter. Derived from vitamin A, topical retinol is known to help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and support overall youthful-looking skin.
We recommend Shani Darden’s Retinol Reform, which is an award-winning formula that is clinically proven to fade the appearance of fine lines and other signs of premature aging. Shani’s cruelty-free formula is suitable even for sensitive skin and includes lactic acid for additional exfoliation.
3. Increase Hydration
You may have seen hyaluronic acid listed as a skincare ingredient, but this acid is actually a vital part of your natural skin health. Your skin produces hyaluronic acid to keep itself lubricated and elastic, but sometimes that natural production can get interrupted. Often, this happens through exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet light (also known as UV rays) and natural aging.
You can replenish your skin’s supply of hyaluronic acid by using a serum or moisturizer that contains the hydrating acid. We recommend Dr. Nigma Serum No. 1, which is filled with hyaluronic acid and other plumping ingredients to help minimize the appearance of photoaging damage caused by harmful UVA and UVB rays.
4. Try Chemical Peels
Chemical peels involve using alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) to gently remove the skin cells on the outermost layer of the epidermis. While there are some chemical peels that only dermatologists can perform, you can find light chemical peels over the counter.
Because of the resurfacing effects of these light peels, they can reduce elastosis and also help increase your skin’s natural collagen production. This helps keep your skin firm and leads to the appearance of healthy skin.
5. Use a Firming Device
One way to supercharge your skincare routine is to include a firming device. Certain skincare devices use sound, vibration, electricity, or even pressure to stimulate collagen production and provide facial contouring.
We recommend Shani’s Facial Sculpting Wand, perfect for any skin type. This clinical-strength wand uses vibration therapy to encourage firm skin and increase circulation.
6. Stay Out of the Sun
Sun damage plays a major role in elastosis, so we recommend limiting sun exposure. You should also protect yourself from harmful UV radiation while you’re out and about.
To protect yourself, we recommend finding a sunscreen lotion with at least SPF 30. You should apply sun protection daily to maintain healthy-looking skin, along with reapplying every two hours, especially when you’re spending time outdoors.
7. Increase Your Vitamin C
We mentioned earlier that free radical damage can increase elastosis. In fact, free radicals can do much worse if left unchecked.
We recommend incorporating vitamin C into your daily routine to help combat these effects. Vitamin C is full of antioxidants that can neutralize free radicals, and you can increase your vitamin C levels through your diet. Vitamin C is also an amazing ingredient to add to your skincare routine as well. Not only does it help to protect the skin from environmental stressors which deplete collagen, it can help to reverse the signs of aging and increase cellular turnover as well!
8. Revamp Your Diet
Speaking of your diet, one of the main factors in elastosis is an unhealthy diet. To prevent sagging skin, we recommend staying away from highly processed foods choosing foods that are high in collagen and vitamins E, C, and A.
Skin elasticity helps your skin stay supple and firm when exposed to stress. Although aging will naturally deplete your skin’s elasticity, you can do something about it!
You can take control by reworking your skincare routine and by boosting your diet, although we still recommend speaking with your dermatology practitioner for a personalized action plan. We wish you the best of luck on your skincare journey!
Elastin: Structure, Function, Skin Care & Supplements | Cleveland Clinic
Collagen for Your Skin: Healthy or Hype? | Cedars-Sinai