Given the passage of time and the effects of gravity, sun exposure and lifestyle, even the most beautiful pair of eyes aren’t immune to signs of ageing. Dr Lisa Chan describes how to take care of and protect these wonderful assets.
Often described as the windows To the soul, the eyes are an integral part of how we communicate and are perceived by others. A glance can convey a multitude of meaning and emotions, and looking deeply into another’s eyes can build trust and affection.
It comes as no surprise, then, that seeking to enhance the beauty of our eyes has a lengthy history. From Cleopatra’s famous kohl rims to modern eyeliners, concealers and mascaras, the desire for magnetic and alluring eyes is a time-honoured tradition.
Regrettably, with the passage of time and the effects of gravity, sun exposure and lifestyle, even the most beautiful pair of eyes aren’t immune to signs of ageing. The average pair of human eyes blinks 24,000 to 28,000 times a day, and at only 0.33 to 0.36mm, eyelid and periorbital skin is only a fifth as thick as that covering the rest of the face. The combination of these factors, as well as certain genetic expressions and facial structures, results in the skin around our eyes being susceptible to dehydration, wrinkling, sagging, discoloration and puffiness.
So how can we combat these dreaded signs of ageing? Moisturising the delicate periorbital skin, especially during drier winter months, is key. Other minimally invasive options for those looking to turn back the hands of time include botulinum toxin injections or volumisation with hyaluronic acids and biostimulant filters. Rejuvenation and tightening is also possible with the insertion of polydioxanone threads, or the use of high-intensity ultrasound and radiofrequency energy-based machines.
Aside from getting in our prerequisite hours of beauty sleep, diet and exercise play important roles in maintaining youthful-looking eyes and clarity of sight. We can incorporate foods rich in antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins C and E, zinc and lutein, and stay at a healthy weight to prevent age-related ocular diseases such as macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and cataracts.
When stationed outdoors for prolonged periods, we should also take care to use a good pair of sunglasses that can block 99-100 percent of UVA and UVB rays. Squinting will hasten the onset of wrinkles, and excessive ultraviolet-light exposure is related to macular degeneration and cataract formation. With society’s increasing reliance on technology, it’s also a good idea to take a break from screens every 15 minutes or so – your eyes will thank you, as will your neck and shoulders.
The eyes are our first point of contact with the outside world, so it’s imperative that we take good care of them – after all, we only get one pair for life. Not everyone can be born with long-lashed doe eyes, but clear vision and a healthy lifestyle will always reflect that youthful joie de vivre within.