When I tell women that tough skin is a good thing, they tend to shy away from this skin care tip.
They shun the idea of tough skin because of two misconceptions based on the way we use language.
The first misconception is that they assume tough skin is the same as rugged skin. They equate tough skin with rough, leathery, unattractive skin. This, however, is not at all what I am talking about. But I do understand where they get this impression.
They get this mistaken impression because they are used to the carefully-spun language used by advertisers to seduce readers and viewers into buying products. When describing facial skin, glossy women’s magazine advertisements or television commercials use words like “soft,” “smooth,” “silky,” “creamy,” and so on. This unconsciously implies that skin must be delicate to be beautiful.
The second misconception is people often they think of the metaphor of thick skin, meaning a pachyderm like indifference to unpleasant facts, words, or experiences. Again, the impression is that a thick skin is something that relates to insensitive, cold, hard, and calloused people. Although this is a connotation, an associated or secondary meaning, it is still enough to cloud judgment.
The Real Truth about Tough Skin
The truth of the issue of tough skin is that beautiful, healthy, and smooth skin looks that way because it is tough and thick. In fact, it is 7 layers strong because skin was designed to protect the body, rather than serve as an ornament draped over flesh and bone to increase sexual appeal.
Young people, for instance, have beautiful skin because they have tough skin. Yes, their skin is thick and tough! This does not mean that it is unhealthy or unattractive as a result of too much swimming, sunbathing, or beauty care neglect. Instead, thick and tough skin means that it is well-structured, strong, and works as an effective barrier against bacteria invading the body from a topical source. Let me repeat: tough skin is also beautiful, healthy, and smooth skin. It is skin that is attractive. While it may be smooth to the touch, it is not delicate skin.
How Skin Gets Tough
So now that we have established that tough skin is a good thing, something that you should want to have, the next thing you may be wondering is how skin gets thick and tough. Why did our skin look beautiful when we were younger? It is because as we aged, our skin began to create less collagen and elastin to toughen up.
In fact, contrary to popular opinion, delicate skin is not a good thing. As our skin became more delicate, it actually began to crease, line, and wrinkle. It lost its tough, elastic, durable texture. Delicate skin is a nice way to say thin, oversensitive skin. When skin gets thin, it begins to sag. Bags under the eyes, for example, are a result of thin, delicate skin.
So when I offer a skin care tip about tougher skin, I am actually pointing people in the right direction.
How, then, does one get tough, thick skin?
Tough skin is skin rich in collagen and elastin. It is healthy, resilient, well-structured skin.
The way to get tough skin is to get more collagen and elastin in the tissue of your skin.