As the famous duet might suggest, when it comes to the battle of the sexes, it’s anything you can do, I can do better, right? While in many cases your gender really doesn’t have much to do with your capabilities, when it comes to physical signs of aging, women seem to be at a bit of a disadvantage—at least without a little help—with men having the upper hand at delaying premature signs of aging. Mostly, you can thank hormones for this imbalance, but there are a few other factors you may consider that could help to turn the tables. Here, we take a look at four of the top reasons men appear to age slower than women with a couple bonus tips on how you can influence the odds in your favor.
Women outliving men happens to be a worldwide trend. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), on a global scale, women live an average of six to eight years longer than their male counterparts. The pitfall here is that men’s appearances tend to age more slowly than that of females. Is it any wonder then that most anti-aging skin care lines target females? While there are quite a few lifestyle factors that can tip the scales—and we won’t ignore them—there are four main factors to consider that cause men and women to age at different rates.
While skin health will still vary by individual, fundamentally speaking, male hormones have a thickening effect on skin. According to one study, androgen and testosterone, two hormones that are usually present in higher levels in men, can increase skin thickness by 25% on average as compared to females. This helps to maintain skin structure and plumpness while fending off fine lines and cellulite.
On the flip side, estrogen, a hormone typically present in much higher levels in women than men, can prompt collagen degradation. Because men have lower levels of estrogen, the decline in healthy collagen production tends to be less dramatic with age. In comparison, a female’s collagen production levels tend to sharply decline during perimenopause and menopause, when estrogen levels shift.
While thicker skin and higher collagen density tend to keep men’s skin looking younger for longer, it can also contribute to the development of deeper-set wrinkles, particularly when paired with a typically minimal skin care routine. To prevent premature aging and help to better support skin’s natural collagen production levels, consider adapting a skin care routine using products that contain active ingredients, such as growth factors from stem cells and antioxidants, to stimulate healthy skin cell renewal. Featuring highly concentrated formulas, the Venus Skin™ [Power + Duo], which includes the SCT Serum and SCT Accelerator, may be the perfect pairing to prevent premature signs of aging while improving skin texture and pigmentation. While the SCT Accelerator works to moisturize, hydrate, and nourish the skin, the SCT Serum helps to restore the skin’s ability to heal. The two products are designed to be used together every day to enhance overall skin health.
Generally speaking, men tend to struggle with non-hormonal acne more often than women due to larger pores and higher levels of sebum production—again, thanks to testosterone. However, sebum isn’t all bad. As oil produced by our skin’s sebaceous glands to naturally maintain skin’s moisture levels, sebum helps to support lipid health, which is a key component for healthy skin hydration. Skin hydration, characterized by a strong lipid barrier (more on that here!), plays a significant role in protecting the skin from environmental damage while also preventing signs of premature aging. While lipid barrier health naturally declines with age, the boost in sebum production that men see as a result of higher testosterone levels helps to maintain optimal skin hydration for longer once they pass the 40-year mark. Women, on the other hand, see a more rapid decline in skin hydration, again as a result of hormone fluctuations.
For women seeking a skin hydration boost, facial rejuvenation treatments may be the perfect addition to any anti-aging skin care regimen. Utilizing a three-pronged approach to skin cleansing and rejuvenation, Venus Glow™ treatments are that perfect little bit of self-care for an instantly more radiant complexion. Featuring a gentle vacuum, 360-degree rotating tip, and ultra-fine jet streams, Venus Glow™ facial rejuvenation treatments open up and deep-clean pores while gently massaging skin and evenly spreading the ultra-hydrating purified water to quench dry skin. With instant results and treatments lasting just 15 minutes, Venus Glow™ offers the perfect lunchtime pick-me-up for you and your skin.
Both estrogen and testosterone support collagen and elastin production. However, women see a dip in estrogen levels starting in their 30s, declining at a faster rate as they head into their 40s and on through menopause before levelling out a bit. Men, on the other hand, see less of a dramatic dip, experiencing a gradual decline in testosterone levels beginning in their 30s that doesn’t speed up with age. This means that while both women and men may begin to experience declines in hormone production at the same age, women experience more dramatic dips than men. Considering men also begin with thicker, more naturally hydrated skin, this gives males the advantage of naturally maintaining plumper, younger-looking skin for longer with the slower, less noticeable development of fine lines, wrinkles, and skin laxity later in life compared to females.
For females experiencing a dip in collagen and elastin production during and leading up to menopause, consider opting into an aesthetics treatment plan that better supports skin’s natural collagen and elastin production levels to better maintain and sustain skin health as you age. While topicals may help to do just that, combining advanced anti-aging skin care with a complementary wrinkle reduction treatment plan can help to dive deeper beneath the surface, supporting skin health from the inside out. Utilizing advanced radio frequency (RF) technology, these treatments deliver heat therapy to the deeper dermis layer of the skin, kickstarting collagen and elastin production while promoting the proliferation of certain growth factors, which helps to better establish the tools your skin needs to continue creating healthy levels of collagen. By enhancing your body's natural production of collagen and elastin fibers, these treatments give your body the two main building blocks needed to maintain healthy, youthful skin.
While lifestyle factors are a major variable that technically changes from person to person, we can’t ignore this major factor. Just because men have a higher level of testosterone that benefits skin health from the get-go, that doesn’t mean that they’re guaranteed to experience aging at a slower rate. According to the WHO, males do tend to drink and smoke more often than females, a factor that plays into that shorter average life expectancy we mentioned earlier. Smoking and alcohol consumption may make the rate of collagen and elastin decline in a male much faster than his non-smoking female counterpart who tends to drink less. Further, occupations that require long hours of laboring outdoors generally employ more men than women, making those males much more susceptible to premature aging caused by UV exposure and other environmental factors that can accelerate aging. In contrast, women tend to be more susceptible to depression and anxiety, causing higher levels of stress that can have a negative impact on skin health.
While breaking bad lifestyle habits is the best step to prevent premature aging, a variety of non-surgical aesthetic treatment plans are available to treat common skin concerns caused by environmental factors and our lifestyle choices, including photofacial treatments to resolve UV damage and skin resurfacing treatments for rosacea flare-ups.
While we can’t change the makeup of our skin, we can learn how to better support the skin’s natural structure and processes to better delay aging and improve skin health. Sometimes, this support may be in the form of improved skin care and other times, skin might need a little boost from a customized non-surgical aesthetics treatment plan—the trick is in figuring out what works best for you and pampering your skin along the way.
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