Smoking is widely known to be detrimental to overall health, but it also has a profound impact on the condition of our skin. Our previous post discussed 7 Daily Habits for Beautiful and Healthy Skin and listed saying goodbye to bad habits, such as smoking or drinking, as the last tip.
Why Quitting Smoking is the Real Skincare Secret
That’s because smoking cigarettes can lead to discoloration and premature aging, among other issues. In this article, we will delve into the dangers of smoking for skin health and why quitting is the ultimate skincare secret for achieving a radiant and youthful complexion.
The benefits of quitting smoking for skin health
Quitting smoking offers numerous advantages for skin health. For starters, smoking cessation improves blood flow, which would have previously been impeded by the nicotine constricting blood vessels and reducing blood flow to the skin. The diminished circulation deprives the skin of oxygen and essential nutrients, resulting in a dull complexion.
Additionally, smoking accelerates the aging process, and this can lead to the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and sagging skin. 2020 research published in The Journal of Pathology used an immunoperoxidase reaction from Vector Laboratories to confirm changes in the distribution of elastic fiber components in smokers’ skin. That’s because the harmful chemicals in cigarettes, such as carbon monoxide and free radicals, damage collagen and elastin, crucial proteins responsible for skin’s firmness and elasticity. By quitting smoking, you can slow the premature aging process and better prevent the formation of wrinkles.
Lastly, smoking can cause uneven skin tone and texture due to the depletion of collagen and elastin. This often leads to age spots, skin discoloration, and a rough texture. When you quit smoking, the skin’s ability to regenerate and repair itself improves, resulting in a smoother, more even complexion.
Tips for quitting smoking for better skin health
Adopt healthy coping mechanisms
Smoking is a common coping mechanism for individuals to deal with stress. It’s thus essential to find healthier alternatives to manage emotions and successfully quit smoking. Engage in regular physical activity, practice mindfulness or meditation, and pursue hobbies that bring you joy. Replacing smoking with these healthier coping strategies improves your overall well-being and reduces the risk of stress-related skin issues, such as acne and inflammation.
Embrace nicotine replacement therapy (NRT)
As a tobacco-free alternative, NRT products can aid your cessation journey and start your skin’s path to recovery. One of the most popular forms is the nicotine patch by NicoDerm CQ, which only needs to be applied on your arms or legs for the nicotine to be absorbed. However, patches may cause mild skin irritation as a side effect. For those with sensitive skin, consider oral solutions instead. The nicotine pouches from Prilla only need to be tucked under the lip and come in different flavors and strengths to minimize mouth soreness. On! and VELO even offer pouches as low as 2mg, allowing you to more smoothly transition away from smoking. This variety appeals to smokers looking for a modern oral alternative to cigarettes.
Create a supportive environment
Quitting smoking can be challenging, so it’s crucial to surround yourself with supportive friends and family. You can opt to join a support group as well. One of the most famous group clinics is the Freedom From Smoking by the American Lung Association, which first began in 1975. Otherwise, other options include the highly successful Nicotine Anonymous, which follows a 12-step group therapy approach to kicking addictions, or even the quitSTART phone app by the National Cancer Institute. Having people who understand your goals — whether it’s a commitment to smoking cessation, better skin, or both — can make a significant difference in your success.
Remember, the journey to better skin health and overall well-being begins with a single step – the decision to quit smoking. Embrace this decision and watch your skin transform into a radiant, youthful, and healthier version of itself. For more beauty tips, check out our other blog posts on The Haute People.