Does frowning cause wrinkles?

A woman with wrinkles.

There’s a wonderful scene in William Goldman’s book The Princess Bride where a young woman starts to worry so much about having her title of “the most beautiful woman in the world” that she starts to worry. She is depicted frowning constantly and within a few months has frowned into a variety of wrinkles that steal her title. Credit must be given to Goldman for her imagination, but rarely does frowning for a few months have an immediate effect on skin wrinkling. In fact, frowning is just one of the causes of wrinkles and many other things come into play.

A diagram of younger skin and older skin showing how decreased collagen can cause wrinkles.

The biggest cause of wrinkles is the normal aging process of the skin. As we get older, our skin becomes less elastic and doesn’t fall back into place easily. Two chemicals, collagen and elastin, are responsible for keeping our skin firm when we are young. The supply starts to decrease as we age, resulting in some wrinkles.

Of course, if we spend a lot of time frowning, especially as we get older, we will have frown lines. But all facial muscle contractions will have an effect on our face, not just frowning. So it would be silly to think that you can prevent wrinkles by not frowning. The complex network of facial contractions that make up the smile cause wrinkles too, as do raising eyebrows, talking, blinking, and chewing. Frowning is not a single indicator of the appearance of wrinkles, but it will influence them in part.

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Wearing sunglasses can help protect the skin around your eyes and can help prevent wrinkles.

Another important factor in wrinkle formation is sun damage, which can cause the skin to age prematurely and begin to lose elastin and collagen more quickly. While we can’t always avoid frowning or other facial movements, it’s certainly advisable to limit skin exposure to the sun and wear proper sunscreen and sunglasses when we need to go outside. In addition to preventing premature skin aging, this makes a lot of health sense, as frequent exposure to the sun without protection correlates with a higher incidence of skin cancer.

Smoking can increase the appearance of wrinkles.

If you are struggling with wrinkles, you should also know that smoking reduces collagen production. For those who are considering trying cigarettes to look more mature, consider that in a few years you can actually look older than your age, which isn’t necessarily desirable when you’re 30 and looking 45. Again, there are numerous health reasons. excellent for never starting smoking or quitting if you do. Smoking certainly creates much greater risk factors for not reaching an age where you have to worry about wrinkles.

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