Special thanks to Michelle, the author of this post!
Michelle is a former communications associate who transitioned into building her own freelance business. She enjoys fashion and staying on top of the latest trends. Sitting by the runway is one of her favorite activities in her free time.
Aging is inevitable. One day you’re young with smooth skin and silky hair, and then one day you wake up and barely recognize your own body. Fine lines, wrinkles, and age spots replace once-smooth skin; hair becomes dull and gray; body hair sprouts in inconvenient places; and your legs become riddled with varicose and spider veins.
Many of these complaints are cosmetic although some, like varicose and spider veins, could have uncomfortable symptoms. Luckily, there are over-the-counter and natural treatments that can relieve your symptoms, reduce the signs of aging, and help you age more gracefully.
Spider and Varicose Veins
Spider and varicose veins are caused by swelling in the veins in the lower leg. The swelling is usually caused by poor circulation from sitting for long periods. Spider and varicose veins are essentially the same thing, the only major difference is the size of the veins. Varicose and spider veins can sometimes cause itching and redness around the vein, as well as a feeling of heaviness in the leg.
Natural remedies relieve the symptoms of varicose and spider veins, and even reduce their appearance. Some varicose and spider vein treatments contain homeopathic blends, while others might include essential oils or herbal essences. Other natural remedies include vitamin C and vitamin K, castor oil and mustard oil massage, and apple cider vinegar compresses.
Fine Lines and Wrinkles
Wrinkles are caused by a loss of firmness and elasticity in the skin. Layers of fat under the skin also help smooth the skin. As we age, our bodies start to lose the proteins, collagen and elastin, and the pads of fat that give our skin its youthful appearance. Free radicals, normal wear and tear, and sun exposure all contribute to developing wrinkles. Heredity also plays a large role.
Natural remedies plump up the skin or remove dead cells from the surface to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Many of these treatments contain fruit acids, and antioxidants like beta-carotene, vitamin C, and vitamin E. Other remedies include eating foods or taking supplements high in omega-3 fatty acids, green tea, and soy.
Age spots are patches of pigment caused by repeated exposure to the sun. Pigment cells called melanocytes darken when your skin is exposed to the sun, resulting in a suntan. Over time, these cells clump together creating large patches of pigmentation. Some also believe that age spots are caused by toxins in the liver.
Natural remedies lighten the skin to reduce the appearance of the age spots. These remedies include onion juice, apple cider vinegar, aloe Vera gel, lemon juice, and castor oil applied directly to the skin. Some remedies are also designed to act as liver tonics to help remove the toxins, such as burdock, dandelion, garlic, and milk thistle seeds.
Gray and Unwanted Hair
Gray hair is caused by the loss of pigment in the hair follicle. Unwanted body hair is caused by hormonal changes triggering hair growth.
Dying is the usual remedy for graying hair, but many commercial dyes are full of chemicals. There are several natural dyes that can cover the gray hair without as many chemicals, including henna, black tea, rosemary, and curry leaves. There are also herbal remedies that are believed to slow and even reverse graying including Indian gooseberry and blackstrap molasses.
Hair removal is the usual remedy for unwanted body and facial hair. There are several over-the-counter depilatories that remove hair by chemically dissolving it in the follicle. There are also natural remedies that are believed to remove hair without chemicals. These remedies include Indian nettle and turmeric, oatmeal scrubs, fenugreek, and lavender and tea tree oil.
In addition to natural and over-the-counter remedies, there are lifestyle changes that you can make to reduce the signs of aging and slow the aging process. These changes include:
- Quitting smoking
- Staying well hydrated
- Reducing your time in the sun
- Wearing sun screen when you are in the sun
- Using a moisturizer appropriate for your skin type.