Young not young anymore

Most youngsters have become obsessed with anti-aging therapies and devices

Are youngsters ageing faster?

Well, going by the steady stream of youngsters sharing anti-aging remedies, either on platforms like TikTok or Insta and even seeing dermatologists, it appears as though the Gen-Z is already worried about ageing and looking at all sorts of treatments available.

What explains why people in their 20s are opting for makeup products with anti-aging benefits like fine-line reduction and SPF protection? There are many who are also using anti-aging serums.

“As sad it is, that’s the truth of the hour. From their skin, hair, and bodies, youngsters are hyper-observing everything, which is making them hypersensitive. They are looking at every flaw,” points out Dr Rashmi Shetty, celebrity dermatologist, author and entrepreneur.

A scary trend

Describing it as a worrisome trend that is unfolding in many households, she says people as young as 14 and 15 are already talking about whether they can do a lip or looking at various options for hair fall.

“They’re not ageing faster. It’s just that they are becoming more and more aware of ageing and the possible solutions to delay it. They’re scared because they have dark spots under their eyes from depression, which is completely normal for everyone,” she says.

Reddit is flooded with requests such as “Premature ageing at 16. What are my options?” along with “Wrinkles at 19?!” There is also an increase in the number of teen influencers who discuss ageing. In one YouTube video, a teen explains to her viewers the significance of using a serum before using gua sha to avoid early wrinkles because “we don’t want to look like raisins when we’re older.”

Ideology of anti-ageing

What is making them think this way? Dr Rashmi says, the older generation embraced their wrinkles as a natural part of ageing and loved the process as well as their appearance throughout their entire lives.

“Up until our mid-30s, we didn’t even think twice about ageing when we looked in the mirror. But sadly for this generation, the complex is literally driven into their heads,” says Dr Rashmi, who sees a number of young patients every day who are looking for anti-aging treatments and products.

Anti-ageing and capitalism

The global anti-aging market is expected to be worth $63.01 billion in 2022. These figures only highlight how modern capitalism exploits people’s fear of growing elderly.

Dr Meghna Mour, an aesthetic dermatologist, cosmetologist, and trichologist, believes that there are advantages and disadvantages to living in a digitalised society, including increased self-awareness, easier access to skincare techniques online, and the growing power of e-commerce.

According to Dr Meghna, a rise in e-commerce skin brands offering anti-aging and radiant skin care products is the result of this paradigm shift. “Influencers from a variety of backgrounds, such as actors, TikTok artists, and those outside the medical industry, fervently support these items. My dedication to skincare goes beyond fads. Skincare is a form of self-care,” she explains.

Why ageing fast

Dr Rashmi believes that the increased exposure to blue light is also hastening the ageing process.

“People are ageing earlier than they should have because of the damage to the ozone layers and the amount of pollution outside,” says Dr Rashmi adding, stress is another main reason. Besides, consumption of processed foods increases the end glycation, making your collagen brittle. She says, “There’s a lot of intervention, whether it’s makeup or just bleaching, facials, and peels done at a really young age.”

Harmful influence

To show their progressiveness, many anti-aging firms have resorted to employing phrases like ‘pro-ageing’, ‘ageing gracefully’, and ‘preventative ageing’ in their marketing. While all of this is done to boost consumerism, instilling ageism in teenagers has a more harmful influence on their minds than we think.

Contrary to the notion that the younger generation is ageing faster, her professional opinion is that teens’ increased interest in procedures such as anti-aging serums, botox, fillers, and surgeries does not always correspond to effective anti-aging therapies.

“Many people fear ageing and want immediate remedies, feeling that delaying may be too late. However, it is crucial to stress the necessity of seeing a skin specialist before making such decisions,” says Dr Meghana, a laser specialist and founder of Skuccii Supercliniq.

To live is to age

Many teenagers mistake healthy skin for young skin. To achieve superior skin health over skin looks, Dr Rashmi and Dr Meghana recommend focusing on skin barrier maintenance rather than anti-aging. Skin in adolescence has increased collagen and flexibility. It recovers faster and is more pliable.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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