Can we fight wrinkles? – BBC News Arabic
- Nagham Qasim
- BBC News Arabic
Have you ever imagined putting saliva on your face to protect it from the appearance of wrinkles?
Millions of women and men around the world have tried applying snail slime or creams containing its saliva to their face as one of the many attempts to prevent the appearance of those fine lines that cover all of our faces as we age.
Hundreds of ads and tips appear to me on social media every day, and I watch them hundreds of times a day, as do others, in the media. After that, I first noticed these two lines on my forehead and this one around my mouth, and once Similar lines appeared around my eyes, I started following dozens of Arabic influencers and dermatologists offering tips to prevent wrinkles from creeping in media ranging from drinking water to using creams, machines and exercises sessions in specialized clinics are sufficient for treatment attempts.
Among them is an Iraqi influencer named Ghadeer Sultan who has 2 million followers on Instagram. I contacted Ghadir, who repeatedly promotes a cream she has developed that is “98% of the total composition is snail extracts,” to find out why she is so interested in delaying the appearance of wrinkles.
Ghadir told the BBC: “What scares me and millions of women around the world the most is the appearance of those lines that convey a sense of age. The problem with wrinkles is that they make others think that you are no longer young and therefore less attractive.” According to Ghadir, it was her followers who pushed her to find a solution to the problem of wrinkles, since most of them see it as the most pressing problem and are willing to “do whatever it takes to prevent wrinkles or delay their appearance”.
But why do we get wrinkles?
Five dermatologists contacted by the BBC agreed that there is no treatment or ointment that can prevent wrinkles from appearing. Wrinkles are those lines, folds, or sagging that appear on the skin as a result of stretching or damage to skin tissue due to a lack of fat and a lack of collagen and elastin.
dr Hani Al-Nazer, former head of the National Research Center and consulting dermatologist, told the BBC: ‘Although there is no escaping the appearance of wrinkles, there are factors that speed up their appearance such as: B. Lack of drinking water, and excessive exposure to the sun at midday, as well as smoking and overeating.” Pickles, frequent eating of processed sweets, tension and stress, and overuse of cosmetics, contrary to what many people imagine.
Basically, aging is a major cause of decreased collagen production, but according to experts, genetic factors interfere with the rapid appearance of wrinkles. People who come from families suffering from the appearance of wrinkles often appear early.
However, genetics is only responsible for 10% of the appearance of wrinkles, but lifestyle is the most important factor in their appearance. And by heredity here we mean the thickness of the skin that causes it to sag and wrinkle.
Skin color also plays a role in the formation of wrinkles: Al-Nazir says that dark-skinned people tend to get wrinkles later in life compared to other white-skinned people because dark-skinned people have a lot of melanin, which protects the inner tissues of the skin from UV rays. rays of the sun. Because the sun’s UV rays cause the breakdown of collagen and elastin, which are the pillars on which skin’s shape and wrinkles depend.
According to dermatologists, the effect of smoking on the skin in terms of collagen and elastin breakdown is very similar to that of sunlight.
Pressure or stress leads to an increase in the secretion of neurotransmitters, including adrenaline, which causes blood vessels to constrict, thus reducing blood flow in tissues, including the skin of the face. Also, increasing the amount of salt consumed leads to water retention in the body and damage to the blood vessels that carry blood to the skin.
There are two types of wrinkles, one called kinetic or expressive wrinkles, which are caused by repetitive movements such as laughter or forehead knots. The other type is called fixed wrinkles, which appear continuously on the face and often begin as expression lines but then develop into permanent wrinkles. It occurs when the skin loses elasticity with age.
Wrinkles can provide clues about a person’s health: According to Emma Hobson of the International Institute of Skin, wrinkles on the upper forehead can be related to bladder and stomach health, on the lower forehead a sign of food sensitivity, and around the eyes they can be related to liver condition and the environment. Oral administration may be related to the condition of the gastrointestinal tract.
Money for eternal youth
Professor of Dermatology, Hani Al-Nazer, confirmed that the overuse of cosmetics stimulates the appearance of wrinkles, including those that “their proponents claim” fight wrinkles, yet these products generate imaginary gains.
Iraqi influencer Ghadeer Sultan, 34, told the BBC: “I spend between $160 and $320 every 3 months on skincare products and I can’t go without any of them, but there are many who spend a lot more than that and inject botox. ” About $650-810 every 6 months.
According to global market research firm Euromonitor, the market for products designed to delay the appearance of wrinkles has grown globally, rising from $25 billion in 2016 to $37 billion in 2021.
And most of the money is being spent by younger women, which means young women are more afraid of the appearance of wrinkles than their older age peers. Young women in their 30s spend more on cosmetics to delay the appearance of wrinkles than women in their 40s, 50s and 60s, according to a survey by British market research firm One Ball for the US Groupon for e-marketing.
Skin care products top the list of beauty products that women spend on. The One Ball survey found that the average American woman spends more than $225,000 on beauty care products over the course of her lifetime, and a quarter of that is this one Amount is spent on face care products while men spend half of what women spend on cosmetics.
According to market research network Euromonitor, women in the Arab world spend about US$25 billion annually on all kinds of cosmetics, which is the first in the world.
Saudi women are the leaders in spending on cosmetics compared to their peers in the Arab world as Saudi women spend US$1.5 billion on these cosmetics annually.
Combat wrinkles with Botox
The search for “miracles” that can stop or hide wrinkles seems to be as old as mankind. This is driving the market for products that serve this purpose into rapid development. This market evolved from the use of acids to stimulate collagen production in ancient Egypt, through Europeans putting flesh on their faces in the 16th and 17th centuries, to the emergence of facelifts in the early 20th century. In 2002, a paradigm shift occurred in cosmetics with the beginning of the use of Botox on the market.
Ghadeer has been anticipating the appearance of wrinkles since she was in her early twenties by injecting botox, and she says, “I injected botox to hide those wrinkles faster and prevent them from forming any more in the future.” I’ve found groups on social media the same advice dozens of women have given each other: Girls in their 20s and younger accept Botox injections to prevent wrinkles later on.
We asked the headmaster about its validity: “It’s a lie that some companies exploit to promote their products. Nothing can prevent the appearance of wrinkles in the future, and in no case can they be prevented. All we can do as doctors is to hide what has already appeared from them through fillers and botox.
Wrinkles and beauty are an inverse relationship
Social networking sites recently buzzed with bullying comments about two images, one showing a well-known Lebanese singer with her face covered in wrinkles, and the other an Egyptian film star in her 70s who was considered one of the beautiful icons in the films of the sixties. Why do some people not accept wrinkles and pay millions to try to hide them in some way?
Egyptian actress Engy Wegdan told the BBC: “In our culture there is an inverse relationship between beauty and wrinkles. So much so because for women, advancing age means they become less attractive.”
Engy launched an initiative entitled ‘You are as beautiful as you are’ on her Instagram page to encourage women to accept their looks, adding: ‘I started my campaign on social media because the latter is a Platform for bullies and everyone else who directs hurtful comments to others and imposes beauty rules on them has become legitimate.” Strict and unrealistic, otherwise they will be exposed to insulting comments.
And Angie’s initiative is just one of dozens around the world calling for abandoning what has been labeled unrealistic ideals of beauty and self-acceptance.
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