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How fast and dramatically you wrinkle depends a lot on genes. In general the darker your skin, the less you wrinkle. This explains why an African-American woman may have smooth skin at 50, while Scandinavian woman of 28 is battling crow's feet. Of course no matter what your genetic makeup, your lifestyle choices do make a difference. Sun exposure accounts for about 90 percent of the symptoms of premature skin aging. UV light damages collagen and depletes skin of hyaluronic acid (which gives skin its plumpness). Your best defense? Wear sunscreen 365 days a year. No matter what your age, you can prevent new wrinkles from forming.

  • Because wrinkle fighters like retinol make skin photosensitive, don't use them during the day.

  • Apply a moisturizer that contains antioxidants (vitamin C, vitamin E, green tea, coenzyme Q10) and sunscreen of at least SPF 15.

  • In addition to disarming free radicals - charged particles that accelerate the aging process - researchers believe that antioxidants increase the potency of sunscreen.

  • After cleansing, apply a retinol at night. Though less effective than their prescription counsins Renova and Retin-A, retinols can smooth fine lines and boost collagen by speeding up cell renewal.

  • If you find retinol too irritating, try a peptide-based wrinkle product. Peptides are some of the most potent collagen promoters available.

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