What Smoking Does to Your Skin

What smoking does to your skin is not really 100 % known. But there is evidence out there that suggests that it can cause your skin to age prematurely. 

There are many negative impacts from smoking on the human body such as cancer and lung and heart disease. But one negative impact that people don’t seem to take much notice of is the fact that it can accelerate the ageing process of their skin. When we say ageing of the skin; we mean that the skin begins to droop, it begins to get wrinkled and it also begins to dry out and become coarse. Smoking may also cause the skin to discolor too and cause broken blood vessels. Some smokers may also appear to be gaunt developing a slightly grey or orange complexion in addition.

There have been many studies taken place since the 1970’s that has shown us that smoking can cause more premature wrinkles to the facial area than exposure to the sun. Throughout these studies they also noticed things such as; lines under eyes, which is commonly known as “crows feet”. These lines can begin to develop at an earlier age due to smoking. They also noticed that smokers developed vertical lines near the mouth. These lines are known as “smokers lines”. The previous effects continue to worsen as we age. If we were to smoke 30 cigarettes a day, by the age of 70 we could look around 14 years older. So, we would more than likely look about 84.

What smoking does to your skin is unclear, but we do know that it does age your skin prematurely.

How does smoking cause the skin to age prematurely?

It’s not entirely clear how exactly smoking causes the skin to age prematurely. But below are some theories for you to take a look at.

  • (Vasoconstriction) narrowing of the blood vessels. This could potentially restrict blood flowing to the skin causing a change to the elastic fiber and the loss of the skins collagen
  • A reduction of Vitamin A in the skin.
  • The heat from the cigarette causing the skin to dry out.

These are a few theories for us to bare in mind as we continue to look for the answer to how smoking causes the skin to age prematurely.