It's not surprising anti-aging products are a billion-dollar industry. After all, many men and women will try just about anything if it promises to ward off crow's feet and wrinkles. Before you blindly turn to the next anti-aging trend or gimmick, check out the seven common-and utterly false-wrinkle myths below. In the fight to turn back time, knowledge really is power.
1. Myth: Drinking large quantities of water fights wrinkles.
Fact: No doubt water is essential for staying hydrated both inside and out. And drinking enough (approximately eight glasses a day) substantially moisturizes your skin on the cellular level and slightly improves elasticity-which can result in a more youthful glow. However, wrinkles come with age and no amount of H20 can change that.
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2. Myth: The most expensive wrinkle creams are the most effective.
Fact: Some of the highest-rated wrinkle creams can be found at your local drugstore! In 2009, both Consumer Reports and ConsumerSearch.com picked Olay Regenerist as the best wrinkle cream ($23 at Walmart). Other highly-rated anti-aging agents include RoC Retinol Deep Wrinkle Night Cream (named "Editor's Choice" by Allure magazine in 2010, $19.99 at Target) and Neutrogena Healthy Skin Anti-Wrinkle Anti-Blemish Cream (lauded as one of the best budget-friendly emollients by InStyle magazine and added to dozens of Kaboodler's wish lists and shopping lists, $10 on Amazon.com).
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3. Myth: Tanning beds don't cause wrinkles-the sun does.
Fact: We hate to break it to you, but most tanning beds emit high levels (93 to 99 percent, according to LiveStrong.com) of long-wave ultraviolet (UVA) rays-the type of rays associated with skin damage in the form of age spots, fine lines, and (you guessed it) wrinkles.
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4. Myth: Pulling skin down causes wrinkles.
Fact: Many of us have heard that pulling down on eyes while applying eyeliner or mascara and stretching skin downward while applying moisturizer or foundation causes premature wrinkles and irreversible sagging. Truth is, tugging derma in any direction for short periods of time won't cause wrinkles.
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5. Myth: Eating lots of oily fish prevents skin from aging.
Fact: Decades of research has shown that eating oily fish, which is rich in omega-3, is good for your heart and overall health. As for your skin, however, there simply is no scientific proof that consuming this fatty acid is beneficial.
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6. Myth: Dry skin causes wrinkles.
Fact: Dry skin can make you appear aged by accentuating fine lines, but it doesn't actually cause wrinkles. The good news is that remedying dehydrated skin is easy-simply invest in a hyaluronic-based emollient like Olay Complete Moisturizing Lotion with SPF 15 ($11 on Drugstore.com).
7. Myth: Facial exercises ward off wrinkles.
Fact: According to the American Academy of Dermatology, facial exercises actually make the problem worse. When muscles are used, grooves form under the skin. Eventually, these grooves turn into fixed wrinkles because skin loses its elasticity (or its ability to bounce back) over time.
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Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.
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