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One Healthy Best Thing: Neck Care
If you’ve noticed your neck looks like it’s outpacing your face in the aging race, it’s not your imagination.
Nora Ephron was likely not the first - or last - person to ever utter: "I feel bad about my neck.
Has menopause made you even more aware of your neck?
You’re in good company. That’s because menopause causes changes to your skin. Chief among them: the fat underneath your skin (we lose some), plus your skin’s elasticity (we lose that, too).
Combine that with the dryness from changing hormones - and it all adds up to sagging, particularly in the areas of your cheeks, jawline and heading south toward your neck. (Oh, and did I mention fine lines and wrinkles, too? Can’t leave them behind.)
Here’s why the skin on your neck is aging faster than the skin on the rest of your body:
You ignore it. Most of us don’t care for our necks the way we might care for our face with a good skin care routine.
You have poor posture. This can weaken your neck muscles, further leading to saggy skin and the dreaded turkey neck (or double chin). One neck culprit is “tech neck;” constantly leaning your head forward to read your phone, tablet or computer screen. This position not only causes muscle pain, but can lead to horizontal lines in your neck from weakened muscles.
You forgo sunscreen. When you think about sunscreen, do you just think about applying it to your face? Your neck needs it, too. (And while we’re on the subject, don’t forget the tops of your hands.)
Neck skin is thinner and particularly vulnerable to damage. Because this skin has a lower concentration of stem cells and less collagen than facial skin, it’s slower to repair itself. The sun, over time, will lead to damage, leaving behind crepey skin, wrinkles and sun spots.
It doesn’t take much sun to damage the skin on your neck. Ultraviolet A waves hit the skin’s inner layer (the dermis), attacking cells that are responsible for producing elastin and collagen (which provide structure, strength and support to your skin).
The Moral of the Story
Give your neck equal time. Treat it the same way you treat your facial skin; with sunscreen, serums, moisturizers and gentle cleansers.
Some manufacturers market specific neck-only products, but most experts agree that is not necessary, saying you can use the same products on your neck that you use on your face.
For a Pause:
For more info, take a look at what Cleveland Clinic has to say about caring for your neck skin.
If you choose to use a neck-specific product, Amazon has many to choose from.
Necks are vulnerable not only because of the sun, but because of life itself. Treat yours to some self-care.
Got jowls? Here are some ways to treat them.
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