May. 02, 2020

Lifestyle factors that influence skin ageing

Every skin is unique and is determined by both external and internal factors. In this blog we explain what the external factors are, how they may play a role in your skin ageing process and what you can do about it.


In this skintip Dr. Barbara Geusens talks about aging and prefers to use the term pro-aging, rather than aging. Two important components play their part in aging:

  1. Intrinsic aging, which is your DNA
  2. Extrinsic aging, which are external factors in your lifestyle


Sun exposure


When you are in the sun, your skin is exposed to ultraviolet (UV) light, more specifically UVA and UVB radiation. Repeated and unprotected exposure to UV radiation may cause premature skin ageing, also known as ‘photoageing’. People with a pale skin are more prone to sun damage because they are naturally less protected. UV radiation leads to the formation of DNA mutations and free radicals or ROS (reactive oxygen species). If we do not have enough antioxidants in our body to neutralize these ROS, there is a disbalance between ROS production and neutralization. Consequently, there is an accumulation of these ROS and generation of ‘oxidative stress’, which accelerates the skin ageing process.  The same for DNA mutations, the body repairs DNA damage through DNA-repair and cell death (apoptosis). When we age or are highly exposed to radiation from the sun, our body may be unable to repair this and increases the risk of skin cancers.

The difficulty with sun damage is the fact that this varies strongly from person to person, which makes it impossible to give a value or duration that says how often or long you can sit in the sun at most before you suffer damage. One person may naturally have better protection mechanisms against sun damage than another, f.e. DNA repair, pigment, antioxidant capacity...


As with UV radiation, high atmospheric pollution also causes the formation of ROS and subsequent oxidative stress. This results in various types of skin damage such as premature ageing, pigmentation and skin cancers. The damage caused by  atmospheric pollution is worsened by UV radiation. A high level of air pollution can be seen especially in Asia, in countries such as China, India, Pakistan.





Nutrition is another important factor as it provides vitamins and antioxidants to our body and skin. Nutrients with antioxidant activity are present in various vegetables and fruits. Intake of nutrients containing antioxidants is important to support the internal antioxidant system and consequently fight oxidative stress and prevent skin ageing.

A Dutch study showed that individuals on a diet rich in red meat and snacks showed more facial wrinkles than persons on a diet rich of fruits.

By using aggressive treatments (scrubs, strong foaming or alkaline soaps, irritating creams, peelings) you can destroy or damage your skin barrier. This can cause your skin to become oversensitive, often irritated and red. Irritations or inflammations accelerate skin aging. Dry skin often occurs in elderly people and tends to worsen when they often take hot baths and harsh soaps. Taking an occasional bath can't hurt, but daily use of strong foaming cleansers, aggressive peelings, alcohol products or scrubs can seriously damage your skin barrier.

Cosmetic & skincare products




Persons who smoke often can develop 'smoker lines', which are wrinkles in the area around the mouth caused by the repeated movements of the muscles around the lips when smoking a cigarette.

Moreover, nicotine available in cigarettes negatively affects the vascularisation in the dermis, resulting in a decreased delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the skin and a reduced wound healing of the skin. Smoking increases MMPs (matrix metalloproteinases) - enzymes that break down collagen - and leads to a degradation of the collagen in our skin. This reduces the firmness and structure of the skin and accelerates  the signs of ageing

Chronic psychological stress can have a detrimental effect on skin aging. The exact mechanism of how stress influences skin aging has still not been fully understood and researched. However, recent research has shown that different mechanisms - such as telomere shortening, increased hormone production and oxidative stress – may play a role in skin aging.





While you’re enjoying your well-deserved sleep and rest, the body recharges, recovers and skin cells renew. The sleep phase is important for the skin as the skin recovers from the damage it suffers during the day and skin cells renew themselves during the sleep phase. A chronic sleep deficiency, may therefore lead to a decreased barrier recovery, a dull skin tone and early signs of skin ageing.


During our lives or the different periods of the year we are exposed to different weather conditions. Weather changes, such as sun exposure and wind, dry air,  can have an influence on the condition of your skin and can play a role in the aging symptoms of your skin. For example, during the winter, cold and dry air can dehydrate the skin, making fine lines and wrinkles more visible.

Weather conditions



Think about the external factors to which your skin is exposed and take them into account when putting together your skincare routine. For example, if you live in a busy city, you can use a vitamin C serum (conc. >10%) and eat lots of fruits and vegetables to neutralize ROS or free radicals. 

At Nomige we use a questionnaire to determine which external factors can play a role in the condition of your skin. Based on this questionnaire, we formulate a day cream that is adapted to your skin and acts on your needs. The questionnaire can be completed repeatedly, this way we can take into account external factors that change over time.

You should not forget that internal factors (your genetic profile) also play a crucial role in your skin condition and ageing process.

By taking into account both your intrinsic factors (DNA test) and extrinsic factors (Lifestyle test), we can select ingredients that specifically act on your needs. By doing this, Nomige offers a super-efficient yet user-friendly skin care routine.

Learn about DNA skincare & Nomige from Dr. Barbara Geusens

Watch an interactive and educational session where you can learn more about your skin, the role of your DNA, skincare and the Nomige concept.

The online Masterclass is the ideal opportunity to learn more about Nomige and DNA skincare. 

Want to know more about skin aging?

Skin aging is a very complex process that is influenced by both internal factors (your DNA) and external factors (such as the sun, pollution, weather conditions, smoking...).  Every skin is unique and the same can be said of the ageing process.

Follow our story

Connect with us and follow the hashtag #MyNomige to stay up to date of the latest skin tips and news.

Follow our story

Connect with us and follow the hashtag #MyNomige to stay up to date of the latest skin tips and news.

Volg de hashtag #Nomige en blijf zo op de hoogte over de laatste skin tips en nieuws.
Alles wat je moet weten over je huid
Alles wat je moet weten over je huid