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Ageing Differences in Ethnic Skin

Do different skin types age differently? A recent study sought to discover the differences in ageing skin of varying ethnicities, and found that the effects of ageing are often varied based on ethnic origin. Specifically, it determined that people with darker skin appear younger because they have firmer and smoother skin than lighter-skinned individuals of the same age.

Ageing is a complex process reflecting biological, environmental and genetic factors, and is influenced by cultural and societal standards. Ageing appears as wrinkles, sunspots, uneven skin colour and sagging skin – all of which vary based on an individual’s ethnic origin. In addition to inherited genetic traits, a multitude of other factors effect the ageing process, such as hormones, climate, social and working conditions.

A recent multi-centre study remarks that, across all skin types, the ageing process involves photodamage, fat redistribution, bone shifting, and the loss of connective tissue. In darker-skinned individuals, ageing predominantly involves the appearance of mottled pigmentation, wrinkles and skin laxity – yet these people appear younger than their lighter-skinned counterparts.

Youth and beauty go hand-in-hand in today’s society. Youthful looking women are seen as more attractive than older-appearing women, so a great deal of people seek out  skincare products and cosmetic procedures that promote even skin colour and texture, the absence of wrinkles and sagginess, and lustrous hair – and this has fuelled the cosmetic and surgical industries. Botox, blepharoplasty and soft-tissue fillers are among the many popular cosmetic treatments that improve wrinkles, eyelid sagginess and volume loss.

Understanding the fundamentals of mature skin is important to an ageing population where individuals are living longer and are expected to be productive into later years while holding the strong desire to maintain a youthful appearance. Similarly, learning more about the ageing of darker skin helps develop skin care treatments designed specifically for people of dark-skinned ethnic origins.

Click here to access the full paper 

Source: The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology
Authors: Neelam A. Vashi, Mayra Buainain De Castro Maymone and Roopal V. Kundu

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