At some point, someone will say “yes sir” to you, and it won’t be in a coy, urban banter kind of way. They’ll say it because they think you’re older than them and deserving of the respect of an older man.
Now, this isn’t a problem if you’re definitely older than the person addressing you (i.e., a child). However, when a twenty-something says “yes sir” to you, and you’re only in your thirties, there’s a problem.
Part of it might be genuine respect. Part of it might be because your skin looks older than you actually are. While you might not be able to reprogram a highly respectful youth (and honestly, why would you), you can be proactive in keeping your face looking youthful.
Here’s what you need to know about how your skin works, what keeps it looking youthful, and what you can do to bring back the “hey bro” instead of the “excuse me, sir.”
How The Skin Works
To fully understand why the skin ages and what causes it to look older, you need to understand a little skin science. We promise it won’t get too heavy.
Your skin is your body’s largest organ, and there are two foundational proteins that build it. These proteins, collagen and elastin, are found in numerous other body parts, but they are especially abundant in the skin. Here’s how they work.
Collagen makes up tons of tissues in your body, but it’s the protein responsible for keeping your skin plump and firm. Without collagen, your skin begins to sag and hang on your bones. Collagen supports your skin, helps keep the cells hydrated, and keeps your skin firm.
When you lose collagen, you begin to lose firmness. The texture of your skin changes, skin appears thinner, and fine lines start to form around the eyes and at the corners of the mouth.
Elastin works alongside collagen to keep our skin firm, but its job is to create skin elasticity so our skin will snap back into place when it has been stretched. Without elastin fibers in your skin, your skin wouldn’t be able to cover your body without ripping or breaking.
Think of the elastin-like stretch in a cotton-poly blend workout shirt. The shirt has enough elasticity to allow you to bend and move without ripping.
When elastin stores begin to diminish, skin doesn’t snap back into place as quickly as it used to. This can result in skin that sags and causes deep wrinkles to form on the forehead and around your mouth (called nasolabial folds).
Your skin is constantly making new skin cells, and old skin cells are continually dying. This process is rapid when you’re a kid, as it can happen in less than a week.
By age 19, the process slows to two weeks. Once you hit age 30, you’re facing a whole month before your skin renews itself.
Why is this important in terms of looking older? The faster your skin makes new, healthier (read: youthful) skin, the younger you’ll appear.
Damaged, dying skin hangs out on the epidermis, which can make you look older. The longer dead skin cells stay on the surface of your skin, the more chance they have to clog your pores and create blemishes.
Wrinkles and breakouts, a great combo.
What Causes Skin To Look Older?
If you guessed “getting older,” you’re correct, but there’s more to skin aging than just getting older. Let’s look at four main reasons why your skin is aging.
Aging happens no matter how proactive we are about our skincare. Each year your skin functions a little less efficiently than it did the year before. As we age, two events happen with our skin.
Collagen and elastin stores begin to decline. Those chubby cheeks your grandma loved to pinch aren’t nearly as chubby anymore, and the reason is that the collagen and elastin in your skin are slowly decreasing.
Collagen and elastin decrease as much as 1% per year after age 25. Less collagen and elastin mean more margin for lines and wrinkles and an overall thinning and changing skin texture.
- Cellular turnover slows. As we said, the older you get, the slower the process of cellular rejuvenation and repair. Less new skin means the appearance of your skin will naturally look older. Any skin damage you experience will be more noticeable because new skin isn’t there to replace the damaged skin as quickly.
Because of aging, the cards are already stacked against you, but the aging skin party definitely doesn’t stop. Here are three more reasons why your skin is looking older than it should.
Did you even grow up in the ’80s or ’90s if you didn’t have at least one massive, peeling-skin sunburn? Let’s face it, we didn’t take good care of our skin when we were kids. All that sun exposure takes its toll, and the damage from UV rays doesn’t show until you hit your thirties or forties.
The sun's UVA and UVB rays cause DNA changes in your skin that can be irreversible. It also changes how your skin creates collagen and elastin, causing it to create less of it.
Sun exposure also causes changes in the pigment of your skin. Sunspots, aka liver spots or age spots, are areas of hyperpigmentation on your skin that can get darker and more noticeable the older you are and the more sun exposure you get.
Free radical damage happens naturally in your skin, but it can also occur from external stressors. Free radicals are unbalanced molecules that search for balanced molecules to attack. When they find them, they latch on and damage them.
In your skin, free radical damage looks like aging. It accelerates the aging process and makes your skin look older than it should. Free radicals come from sources like the sun, pollution, cigarette smoke, and industrial chemicals.
Your lifestyle choices are another source of skin aging. Not getting enough sleep, drinking too much, smoking, and having a poor diet are all terrible for your health. Not to mention, this can have a negative impact on your skin.
Look, man, we like to party as much as the next guy, but at some point, the lights come on, and you have to face the reality that the actions you take are either good for your skin or they’re not.
How To Keep Your Skin Looking Younger
We’d never bring you the problem without showing you the solution. Aside from making lifestyle changes, you can make some skincare adjustments that will help keep your skin looking youthful, longer.
Power Up Your Skincare Routine
Already have a solid skin care routine? Great. If not, start now (seriously, right now).
Once your basic skin care routine is in place, add a few anti-aging powerhouse creams, serums, and cleansing skin care products to the mix. Disco’s Advanced Set has two products formulated to battle the signs of aging on a man’s skin.
Repairing Eye Stick. Our award-winning eye stick swipes on quickly and keeps your eyes from looking wrinkled and tired. Ingredients like caffeine, pine tree extract, and niacinamide help de-puff, smooth, and visibly reduce the signs of aging.
Small enough to carry in your pocket, our repairing eye stick is your secret weapon to fighting the signs of aging around your eyes.
- Purifying Face Mask. Encourage cellular turnover and supercharge the collagen and elastin production in your skin with our purifying face mask. The ingredients in our mask help dig out impurities in our skin and unclog pores.
Ingredients like willow bark extract contain phenolic acid to help skin rejuvenation. Apply it two times a week to help deep clean, exfoliate, and restore your skin for best results.
You can work on the sun damage you already have and prevent future sun damage from happening with broad-spectrum sunscreen and SPF. Grab a sunblock, like Disco’s Mineral Sun Block, and experience sun protection without chemicals and weird ingredients that might not be good for your skin.
Bonus: our sunblock contains tripeptides and niacinamide to help reverse signs of aging and keep your skin seriously hydrated. Tripeptides stimulate collagen production and keep skin deeply hydrated, while niacinamide erases visible fine lines and wrinkles.
Even if you aren’t going to be in direct sunlight, wearing sunscreen daily can help prevent sun damage and keep you looking younger. You should also always wear protective clothing and sunglasses when you spend time in the sunshine.
Don't Forget About Antioxidants
While we're on the subject of sun damage (and free radical damage), it's important to include a hefty helping of antioxidants into your diet—and your skincare routine.
Antioxidants can donate an electron to unstable free radicals without becoming unstable themselves or breaking down, meaning they can save your collagen and elastin from unnecessary damage.
Antioxidants can be found in plenty of fruits and vegetables, including blueberries, spinach, and dark chocolate. Of course, we can't forget about topical antioxidants, too—namely, the popular vitamin A derivatives known as prescription retinoids and over-the-counter retinol.
A well-rounded diet can help your skin in plenty of ways; antioxidant powers just being one. Look for helpful beta carotenes in carrots and sweet potatoes, omega-3 fatty acids in fatty fish like salmon, and vitamin C in red pepper and strawberries.
Sir, your skin needs some attention, and Disco has the products you can count on to work in a New York minute.
Our products are designed to work synergistically with men’s skin and are formulated with dermatology-backed, plant-based ingredients and compounds that won’t irritate your skin or cause a breakout.
Bring back the “hey bro” with better skincare from Disco.