Life Extension Magazine®

Woman touching skin after supplementing with pine bark extract

How to Accelerate Skin Aging

Exposure to cigarette smoke and ultraviolet radiation degrades the collagen needed to support young-looking skin. Aging itself causes gradual collagen wasting, resulting in outer wrinkling. Maturing individuals may have only half the skin collagen they did at age 18. There are several validated ways to maintain and restore collagen, which is critical for underlying skin support.

Scientifically reviewed by Dr. Gary Gonzalez, MD, in May 2022. Written by: William Faloon.

William Faloon
William Faloon

Women who smoke cigarettes prematurely age their faces by about 10 years.1

A mechanism of tobacco-induced skin aging is impaired collagen synthesis.1

Tobacco also stimulates enzymes that degrade skin collagen.1

Another proven way to destroy collagen is exposure to ultraviolet radiation,2 be it from the sun or tanning beds.

Each year, adults lose about 1% of their skin collagen, which contributes to thinning and wrinkling.3,4 While this may not seem like a lot, after several decades individuals may lose half the skin collagen they had at age 18.3,4

Readers of Life Extension Magazine® do a lot to protect their skin. This includes supplementing with vitamin C and pine bark extract to promote collagen biosynthesis and suppress enzymes that destroy the skin’s collagen matrix.5

What you need to know

Ultraviolet radiation and smoking will put you on a fast track to appearing older. For those who want to reverse skin aging, a novel solution is now available. Find out more in this informative article.

Astaxanthin also suppresses collagen-damaging enzymes and inflammatory markers, with clinical data showing delayed skin aging.6

An often overlooked factor in skin aging is the cross-linking of collagen caused by glycation.7

Even a modest, oral dose of carnosine has been shown to improve objective measures of skin appearance in women.8,9

Restoring collagen lost to decades of normal aging and environmental factors has been challenging up until now.

A Novel Solution

A patented bioactive collagen peptide has been shown to replenish and stimulate the production of procollagen type I (by 65%) and elastin in older skin.10

The result is more youthful skin elasticity and hydration, with a reduced appearance of wrinkles under the eyes. Read more about this in our Restore Youthful Skin Collagen article.

Control Skin Aging

Cosmetic surgery is surging because maturing people are refusing to appear outwardly older.11,12

What too many neglect, however, are nutrients that have been shown to help rejuvenate aging skin from within.

Irrefutable evidence documents how we can age faster, such as exposing our skin to solar rays or cigarette smoke.1,2

On the flip side are studies revealing how collagen can be regenerated to restore a more youthful appearance to our facial skin.10,13

For longer life,

For Longer Life

William Faloon, Co-Founder
Life Extension Buyers Club


  1. Doshi DN, Hanneman KK, Cooper KD. Smoking and skin aging in identical twins. Arch Dermatol. 2007 Dec;143(12):1543-6.
  2. Riahi RR, Bush AE, Cohen PR. Topical Retinoids: Therapeutic Mechanisms in the Treatment of Photodamaged Skin. Am J Clin Dermatol. 2016 Jun;17(3):
  3. Available at: Accessed January 18, 2019.
  4. Ganceviciene R, Liakou AI, Theodoridis A, et al. Skin anti-aging strategies. Dermatoendocrinol. 2012 Jul 1;4(3):308-19.
  5. Cho HS, Lee MH, Lee JW, et al. Anti-wrinkling effects of the mixture of vitamin C, vitamin E, pycnogenol and evening primrose oil, and molecular mechanisms on hairless mouse skin caused by chronic ultraviolet B irradiation. Photodermatol Photoimmunol Photomed. 2007 Oct;23(5):155-62.
  6. Tominaga K, Hongo N, Fujishita M, et al. Protective effects of astaxanthin on skin deterioration. J Clin Biochem Nutr. 2017 Jul;61(1):33-9.
  7. Gautieri A, Passini FS, Silvan U, et al. Advanced glycation end-products: Mechanics of aged collagen from molecule to tissue. Matrix Biol. 2017 May;59:95-108.
  8. Babizhayev MA, Deyev AI, Savel’yeva EL, et al. Skin beautification with oral non-hydrolized versions of carnosine and carcinine: Effective therapeutic management and cosmetic skincare solutions against oxidative glycation and free-radical production as a causal mechanism of diabetic complications and skin aging. J Dermatolog Treat. 2012 Oct;23(5):345-84.
  9. Goebel AS, Schmaus G, Neubert RH, et al. Dermal peptide delivery using enhancer molecules and colloidal carrier systems--part I: carnosine. Skin Pharmacol Physiol. 2012;25(6):281-7.
  10. Proksch E, Schunck M, Zague V, et al. Oral intake of specific bioactive collagen peptides reduces skin wrinkles and increases dermal matrix synthesis. Skin Pharmacol Physiol. 2014;27(3):113-9.
  11. Available at: Accessed January 18, 2019.
  12. Available at: Accessed January 18, 2019.
  13. Proksch E, Segger D, Degwert J, et al. Oral supplementation of specific collagen peptides has beneficial effects on human skin physiology: a double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Skin Pharmacol Physiol. 2014;27(1):47-55.