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Crepey Skin – What It Is And How To Combat It

March 10, 2023

The Creeping in of Crepey Skin

Recently I asked my mom, who is in her 70’s, what skin-related topics interest her.  Most of the time, when I research blog topics, I understandably gravitate towards acne-related topics. But we have plenty of clients who are older and not combatting acne breakouts any longer so let’s tackle the topic of crepey skin!

Now, full disclosure – I am 46 years old and quickly approaching being officially in my “late 40’s.” Additionally, I recently lost about 35 pounds that lingered on my hips well after childbirth…cue more wrinkles and crepey-ish skin.

So while focusing on crepey skin is something my 77 year old mother requested, it is also starting to creep into my daily thoughts. My neck is just a little bit saggier than it was 5 years ago and my arm skin is starting to show some wear and tear. This, of course, makes me dread my upcoming birthday and what the next decade holds for me and my visage.

First things first: What is crepey skin and what causes it?

Crepey skin is defined loosely as skin resembling crepe paper. Fine lines and wrinkles, typically forming in skin that is thinner and more delicate, like the neck, under the eyes, on the upper arms and inner thighs.

Most people associate crepey skin with age but really, the main reason age plays a factor is because we have more years to cause damage to our skin. Age itself is not the only reason our skin starts to sag or become wrinkly – it is because for the 46 years (in my case) leading up until now, we did not take adequate care at protecting our skin. Of course factors like dehydration, smoking, stress, hormonal changes and weight loss are also big contributors that exacerbate crepey skin. This said, the primary factor in the creation of crepey skin is…. you knew it was coming from us in particular – SUN DAMAGE. The damage you do to your skin, either when you were swimming care-free at 14 or soaking up the rays in your 20’s, caused permanent cellular damage to your skin. This damage makes it more difficult for your skin to retain moisture as well as it decreases the skin’s natural collagen production and increases the appearance of crepey skin.

How can I treat existing crepey skin?

Sadly, there is little that most simple creams can do to address existing damage. Retinol creams have been shown to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by increasing skin cell production and causing underlying inflammation, thus ‘plumping’ the skin. The drawback for most of our clients, when it comes to retinol creams is that retinol causes acne breakouts because of the inflammatory effects on the skin. The persistent inflammation causes more skin cells to produce – which die off and get trapped in the hair follicles – creating new acne breakouts to form. For deeper lines, medical intervention such as laser treatments, radio-frequency treatments and fillers are required.

How can I prevent crepey skin from forming?

I feel kind of like a broken record when I write this, to be honest. And that is because what I am about to say, I have said before for other reasons. YES – you can prevent crepey skin from prematurely forming. YES – you can prevent fine lines and wrinkles from prematurely forming. YES – you can absolutely slow down the rate of aging.

And YES – prevention is a whole heck of a lot more possible than reversal.

How? Here we go with the broken record part:

  • Wear your sunscreen – even on cloudy, blustery days. Minimum SPF 30 and re-apply frequently.
  • Wear a wide-brimmed hat, long sleeves etc, especially when out in direct sunlight.
  • Stay hydrated! Drink at LEAST 8 glasses of water a day – the clear stuff… not water mixed with some sugary powder.
  • Stay well-rested and relatively stress free. Have a lot of stress? Meditate. Take a hike. Do what you need to do to lower your stress levels!
  • Don’t smoke.
  • Eat a balanced diet.

I have 4 young girls and I have made it my mission in life to make sure they protect their skin so they don’t wind up, at 46, wondering what else they can do to erase those fine lines and wrinkles that started forming as a child. Gotta love being a child of the 80’s when our parents didn’t know about the importance of sunscreen!

As always – call/text/email with any questions!

Tel. 925.933.8425


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