If you really want to know what is to blame for that statement, It can be summed up into one word, technology. For a large portion of your great-grandmothers life, she lived without many inventions that are known to dehydrate our skin. Such as: air conditioning, central heaters, caffeine and chemicals such as pesticides and preservatives in our food, pollution, sun tan beds, x-rays, etc. Skin dehydration causes the elastin and collagen in our skin to get brittle which results in loss of firmness and sagging skin. Read on for examples for how advancements in technology are aging us faster as well as a few more reasons that we won’t age as well as our great-grandmothers.
In most cases, Grandma didn’t spend time laying out in the sun, working on her tan. Even if she did, our current issue with the ozone layer makes ten minutes of direct sun today as damaging as several hours of sun exposure was three decades ago. Sun damage is one of the biggest factors of self inflicted aging. You don’t have to spend time at the beach or pool in your bikini to accumulate sun damage. Our skin is absorbing damaging UVA and UVB rays every moment we are outdoors during daylight hours. Simply walking to the car, walking into your place of business, shopping, running errands… the minutes add up. Most people don’t realize that they are absorbing damaging sun rays while driving and even while at their desks for those that work next to a window.
Grandma didn’t eat fast food! Grandma most likely cooked everything from scratch and may have even grown her own vegetables, canned her own fruits and rarely ate at restaurants. We have all heard about the lack of nutrition in fast food but even worse are the chemicals and preservatives in nearly every bite. It is not only fast food that should be avoided. Realistically, there are few items purchased at a grocery store that have not been tainted with chemicals. Even the fresh fruit and vegetable section has been contaminated with numerous pesticides. Theses chemicals that we ingest daily, while being considered toxic by some, at the very least are responsible for being dehydrating. When we become dehydrated, water evaporates from our bodies organs that need it least. Our skin is the bodies largest organ and is first to loose water which ends up causing loss of elasticity or sagging skin.
Of course airplanes were invented long before great grandma may have been born; however, airline travel was certainly not as common as it is today. Flying is known to also be dehydrating in several ways. The pressurized cabins, change of altitude and the changing of climate from one destination to the other are all known to dehydrate the skin. You may have noticed that no matter how fabulous you’re makeup may look upon boarding; once you land… it’s a completely different story.
For the most part, our older female relatives did not work at all or for a large portion of their lives. I’m not saying that being a housewife isn’t stressful, but in today’s world, most women are expected to do all of the cooking, cleaning, taking care of the children and still work a full time job. All of these additional responsibilities equal a substantial amount of additional stress that grandma was not exposed to. Unfortunately, stress is known to accelerate aging of the body.
In Grandmas younger years, she washed with cold cream. Although that may sound archaic, cold cream is much better for our skin than any soap bar or foaming cleanser. Anything that foams is a form of detergent and strips water from our skin. Somewhere along the line, women decided that saving time was more important than what was best for our skin. The few seconds we save by using a foaming cleaner each day probably ages us a month or so. Ouch. Additionally, most toners on the market today are also extremely dehydrating due to having alcohol as an ingredient.
Prescription drugs, over the counter medications and recreational drugs are all much more common place in today’s society then it was for our older relative’s lifetime. While some drugs are more dehydrating and aging than others, they are all considered choices that are going to expedite our aging process.
Pollution was first a concern in the 1970’s. It is a progressively worsening problem and we will certainly experience more pollution in our lifetimes than our ancestors experienced.
Do we even have to discuss this one?
Love and Wisdom