There are lots of things you can do to reduce the signs of aging, but there are also things you shouldn’t do. Here are the 30 anti-aging mistakes that most people make. And forgive me if I sound like a mother hen. Think of me as your M.D. friend.

1. Not Wearing Sunscreen

Sunscreen is one of the best defenses you have against aging. In fact, there’s no substitution for wearing sunscreen and no perfect remedy to correct problems if you don’t. If you want to have younger looking skin now and in the future, you should must wear sunscreen. We know that damage from UV rays is cumulative, so everyday you go without protection, damage is adding up to create older skin. Also, UV damage is not totally reversible. Skin treatments can do a lot to erase the visible signs, but damage is done at deep levels.

2. Relying on Sunscreen 100 Percent

Following on from the last point, sunscreen is important, but it doesn't offer 100 percent protection. This is particularly the case on very hot days or at those times of the day when the sun is at its hottest. During these times, you should cover up with a hat, clothing, and/or get into the shade.

3. Forgetting About Sun Exposure When in Your Car

Even if you follow the above two tips, the sun still poses dangers when you’re in your car. Covering up when in your car and getting darker tints on your windows can help. Getting a nice pair of driving gloves will keep hands from getting those telltale dark sun spots.

4. Not Wearing Sunglasses

If you don't wear sunglasses in the sun, you’ll have to squint, which can lead to wrinkles. In addition, sunglasses offer a certain amount of UV protection for the skin around your eyes and can protect your eyes as well.

5. Being Too Stressed

Leading a high-stress lifestyle is bad for your health and your skin. As a result, you not only look older, but you feel older too. It is, therefore, important you try to reduce stress as much as possible. There are lots of ways you can do this, including getting enough exercise and sleep. You can also try yoga, meditation, or mindfulness techniques. In addition, stop trying to multitask. It is rarely a good way to get things done, and it almost always causes increased levels of stress.

6. Washing Your Face Too Frequently

Using top-quality skin care products will keep your face clean, clear, and beautiful, but it’s possible to wash too much. Twice a day is the limit for most women. If you wash more than this, you’ll remove too much moisture, making your skin look older.

7. Having Hair That’s Too Long

Long hair does look youthful, but it’s not always the answer. In fact, long hair that lays too flat, is not in top condition, and doesn’t have a definite style can make your face look drawn, which will make it appear older. On the flip side, you probably want to avoid a cut that looks too mature and isn’t in sync with current fashion. The right option is to get a hairstyle that properly frames your face shape face and that has lots of bodylift and volume.

8. Using Makeup as a Cover-Up for Wrinkles

Makeup is not a solution for wrinkles. In addition, trying to cover up wrinkles with makeup is often ineffective and can actually draw more attention to them. If you have facial wrinkles, on your face, the best option is to treat them by using a daily regime of high quality skin care products that lessen their impact. Look for moisturizers with effective ingredients that, such as products that plump up your skin and enhance collagen.

9. Relying on Products to Cover Up An Unhealthy Lifestyle

There are some excellent anti-aging products on the market and other solutions to make your skin look younger and more vibrant. However, you cannot take a passive approach to anti-aging, continuing to do things you know are not good for you in the hope that an anti-aging product will correct or cover up the problem. Instead, you need to be fully proactive about following a healthy diet, proper sleep habits, exercise, and stress reducing methods while using products to enhance the anti-aging effect.

10. Believing the Marketing Hype

You don't have to watch TV or browse the internet for long before you see products promising anti-aging properties the moon. Every brand has a story to make you believe. But some homework will save you money, and time. These come from international brands as well as companies you’ve never heard of before. Don't take the marketing message at face value, however. You should always research the claims, read detailed material on the ingredients, and look for genuine testimonials or other forms of validation. It’s also vital to know your skin’s behavior and needs. A product may be a miracle for someone but actually pose a problem for you.

11. Not Eating a Balanced Diet

There’s lots of advice on diet and anti-aging, but the most important thing to remember is you should eat a balanced diet. Following fads or cutting one bad thing while continuing to consume others will not get you the results you want. Instead, you should eat a diet that contains a healthy amount of fiber, fruit, vegetables, vitamins, proteins, and minerals. You can take this a stage further by eating foods known to have anti-aging properties. These include blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, Brussels sprouts, kale, cauliflower, and cabbage. One of the things about the foods on that list is that they are all colorful. Being colorful is a good indicator that you are eating a balanced diet. If most of your food is white, brown, or gray, your diet is probably making you old.

12. Not Using the Same Cleanser from the One You Used When You Were Younger

Many women find great products that work brilliantly on their skin when they are in their 20s. This includes cleansers. The problem with continuing to use the same cleanser when you are in your 30s, 40s, or 50s is that your skin changes. In particular, it likely doesn't produce as much oil, so some cleansers will be too harsh. You should use a cleanser that’s more appropriate for the oil levels of your skin. If your skin looks red and feels dry after cleansing, your cleanser is too strong. Find one that is milder. Don’t count on your moisturizer to fix the stripping that a harsh cleanser does.

13. Not Exercising Enough

Exercising as you get older is not as easy when you were younger, but it’s still important. In fact, it’s arguably more important. Regular exercise increases blood flow, which can help your skin, plus it keeps your muscles tight and prevents your skin from sagging. In addition, exercise boosts your mood and can help lower levels of stress. The exercise doesn’t have to be vigorous. If hitting the gym to train with weights or running 10 miles doesn’t interest you, you can try walking, yoga, or swimming. In fact, the most important thing is you enjoy the activity so you’ll continue with it consistently.

14. Not Wearing Sunscreen in the Winter

Sunscreen has already been mentioned in some of the points above, but there’s another sunscreen mistake that some people make – not wearing sunscreen in the winter or on cloudy days. The sun's UV rays can still affect your skin in the winter and on cloudy days, causing wrinkles, discolorations, and reducing your skin's elasticity. You should, therefore, wear sunscreen all year. Think of it as part of your everyday skin program.

15. Thinking You’re Old

Some people start dwelling on the fact they are aging. This can lead to depression and can result in them giving up on looking their best and living a healthy lifestyle. To look younger and remain healthier for longer, you should enjoy life, embrace getting older, and lead a life that’s as active as possible.

Continues on the 18th of October.