Smoking and Appearance: Cosmetic Damage

Many know that smoking is bad for your health, but many more are now discovering how smoking destroys your appearance. Tobacco smoke deprives your skin of nutrients and oxygen, and further destroys your body’s ability to produce collagen and elastin.

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You see the commercials and ads. They illustrate beauty, confidence, and sex-appeal. However, this is not the case in the real world. Clever marketing and targeted research is spared no expense by Big Tobacco. They do this to ensure they maintain the ability to attract new customers, ensnaring new generations of potential smokers. Tobacco companies use beauty and grace as a mask to cover the cosmetic damage smoking actually causes.

How Does Smoking Damage Your Appearance?

Smoking damages one’s appearance by way of several factors. One being that cigarette smoke has been found to be degenerative. According to Live Strong, cigarette use results in oxidative stress occurring within skin cells. Substances such as arsenic and carbon monoxide, which is found in cigarette smoke, hinders the reparative capabilities of collagen and elastin. This causes deep wrinkles and damaged skin. Smoking further causes the skin to take on a purple, red, or orange hue or tone. It further causes premature graying of the hair, or hair loss, in both men and women.

According to CBS News, nicotine withdrawal at night while you sleep causes unrest, resulting in bags under the eyes; excessive yellowing of the teeth due to staining; premature aging; thinner, more brittle hair; slow healing and heavier scarring; gum disease and tooth loss; yellowing of the skin; stretch marks; cataracts; and ultimately, skin cancer.

Why Does Smoking Affect Appearance?

According to WebMD, even at a young age, smoking deprives the skin of much needed nutrients and life giving oxygen. This causes the skin to either lose color, or become noticeably discolored. The obliteration of elastin and collagen destroys the skin’s ability to regenerate and “snap back”. Even second-hand smoke exposure degrades the skin’s building blocks. One of the primary causes of sagging breasts are from exposure to tobacco smoke. Smoking also causes the rapid formation of deep age lines around the lips. This causes an aged appearance, even in a person in their youth.

The chemicals in cigarette smoke are considered to be toxic to humans. The toxicity levels of cigarette smoke cause the body to breakdown – inside and out. Marketing and misinformation provided to the general public alleviates the sense of urgency that the matter requires. Smokers must be made aware of the dangers cigarette smoke contains when it comes to not only their health, but to their physical appearance, as well. Tobacco smoke discolors skin, nails, and teeth. This is well known. It is believed that frequent hand-washing and brushing will void these issues. This is also false. The stars on TV and in commercials can afford expensive procedures to whiten their teeth and bleach stains. The average person cannot. At least not at the rate it is needed for the prolonged “appearance” of good health.

Knowing Fact From Myth

Clever advertising and marketing efforts are a prerequisite of tobacco companies due to the fact that their product kills its consumer base at a rapid rate. In order to maintain their presence and profitability, they must attract new consumers every day to fill the void left by the customers killed the previous day. This is why marketing efforts are focused on beauty and attraction. Understanding this distinction between fact and myth, reality and fantasy, will help expose Big Tobacco’s attempts at pulling the wool over the eyes of a new generation of would-be smokers. It may also save the lives – and looks – of those currently smoking.

What can be Done?

Quitting smoking now greatly reduces the chances of contracting several forms of cancers, adverse health risks, and numerous diseases. It will also aid in the restoration of skin cells, collagen, elastin, and will replenish the skin with vital nutrients and oxygen. The human body has the ability to heal and regenerate, however, smoking cigarettes must be stopped immediately. There are numerous aids to help quit smoking. Nicotine replacement therapies, medications, and electronic cigarettes are methods proven to increase the chances of quitting long-term. Success rates vary among the differing methods, so appropriate research is needed to find the method that works best for you.