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How To Look Younger At 40 (and beyond)

There’s a reason why Hollywood makes such a fuss about men and their mid-life crisis; men over 40 love to look younger to avoid admitting that they’re getting old. Unfortunately, the fountain of youth doesn’t exist, but there are many other methods that men can use. So how do Ryan Reynolds and other 40-year-old males manage to look so much younger?

Men over 40 can make basic lifestyle changes to look younger, like getting regular exercise, cutting out sugar, and stopping unhealthy habits like smoking. A simple thing like a haircut can also make a world of difference. Using sunscreen and moisturizers can also add some youthfulness to your skin.

Cosmetic treatments have gained popularity among men in recent years, and though these treatments make a difference, they are also expensive. But you can do many simple things to look younger after you’ve reached the four-decade mark. Let’s look at some simple and often free ways to start looking younger in your forties.

Lifestyle Changes To Look Younger After 40

The most cost-effective ways for men to look younger after 40 are also sometimes the most difficult to implement for various reasons. But they are also the best ways since they make you healthier so you can live longer instead of just looking younger. If you can implement these lifestyle changes, you will start to notice the difference not just in how you look but also in how you feel.

Living An Active Lifestyle

We’ve all heard of the many benefits of getting regular exercise. Experts often tell us of the various advantages to our health and how an active life can help to improve our immune systems, fend off disease, and extend our lives. We don’t often hear about how exercise can reverse the effects of aging and even revitalize our cells and rebuild our DNA by lengthening the telomeres.

Telomeres are caps found on the ends of DNA strings. As we age, the telomeres shrink, slowing or stopping cellular multiplication. Our old cells are no longer replaced by new cells, making us look older.

Regular exercise and higher levels of physical activity reverse this process, making the telomeres longer, which aids in the splitting of cells. The result is that we start to look younger again. 

It makes even more sense when we add the apparent benefits of exercise and activity, like improving muscle strength. More well-toned muscles will result in less saggy skin, which means we have fewer wrinkles.

If you’ve become a bit inactive, as many men do when they approach their 40s, starting a regular exercise routine is one of the most excellent decisions you can make. But do this with professional advice from a medical expert, and if you are very unfit, start small and work your way up.

For best results, you need to use a combination of cardiovascular exercises, resistance training (like weightlifting), and stretching exercises. Each type works its own unique magic on our bodies, and when we combine them, we will start to look and feel younger again.

Let me add that learning something new, like a new language has this same effect.

Cut Out Sugar

Sugar makes us fat; we all know as much. The disadvantages of eating lots of sugar are too many to mention. But there’s another skin-deep disadvantage of sugar that people often don’t know about: sugar-rich diets make your skin age faster.

Multiple studies have found that glucose and fructose (two of the most common sugars) both produce advanced glycation end products. That’s a fancy way of saying that our cells cannot repair themselves as quickly. So, any damage done to your skin or many other body tissues, either by age or circumstances, will take much longer to recover if we eat lots of sugar. 

Cutting sugar out of our diet entirely will not only help us to lose weight but also improve our skin health and make us look younger. Many men have tried this and found that their wrinkles become less pronounced within only four weeks with no help from cosmetics.

Cut out sugar

Stop Smoking

Smoking or inhaling nicotine in any other form (including vaping) reduces your lungs’ ability to absorb oxygen. It also thickens your blood, meaning that your red blood cells can carry less oxygen to your organs, which includes your skin. 

When cells get insufficient oxygen, they cannot repair themselves or multiply, which is a significant factor that makes us look old.

When you stop smoking, your body will gradually start repairing itself, and your breathing will improve. Your blood will carry more oxygen, and your cells will start to recover. The benefits of quitting smoking are not simply saving money and avoiding lung cancer; your quality of life will improve exponentially, and you will start to look (and feel) younger.

Stop Using Hot Water

Our skins are covered with an oil called sebum. This oil helps to protect our skin and keep it hydrated. Washing it off is never a good idea, as it will cause your skin to dry and look older. One of the things that remove sebum is hot water.

Use warm water instead of hot water when you shower or wash your face. The natural hydration of your skin will help to hide wrinkles and make your skin more radiant.

Work On Your Appearance

Many men get stuck in a rut regarding their “look.” The same hairstyle and clothing you sported in your 30s could make you look older now that you’re in your 40s. Sometimes you can do yourself a massive favor by changing your appearance slightly.

Get A New Haircut

Longer hair tends to show off how grey our hair is becoming. Furthermore, your hairstyle is likely still the same as it was ten or twenty years ago, which will immediately show off your age. Doing something as simple as getting a new, different haircut and maybe coloring your hair a bit to hide the grey will make a world of difference, and you will look younger immediately. 

A good barber will be up-to-date on more modern haircut trends and can judge what will work for you based on the shape of your head and face.

Get Rid Of Excess Hair

Apart from grey hair and wrinkles, few things declare your age as loudly as having hair growing out of strange places, like your ears. Some of us are naturally hairier than others, which can be a blessing if you’re someone who likes growing your beard. But we should limit where we allow the hair to grow.

Pluck your eyebrows. Trim your nose hair. Pluck or shave your ears. Get an excellent manscaping kit and ensure that there’s no hair anywhere that you don’t specifically want there. 

Change Your Clothing

Like our hairstyles, we often get stuck in our clothing styles. We knew that we looked good when wearing particular clothing in our 20s and 30s, so we kept wearing that style. The problem is that fashion and clothing styles change, and wearing something that was in fashion 20 years ago is a dead giveaway that you’re getting old.

It’s a good idea to change your wardrobe. Throw out clothing of the style that you wore a decade or more ago and replace them with new clothes that are more modern. Pants with a tighter fit, more stylish suits, and thinner ties can go a long way toward making you look younger.

Change Your Clothing

However, keep in mind that there are limits to this. Please don’t overdo it. A 40-year-old man wearing clothes intended for teenagers is just weird. Similarly, a 40-year-old man who wears clothes similar to his father’s may appear to be 60 or 70.

Buy clothes in style about 10 or 15 years younger than you. That way, you will look younger but not creepy. 

Treating Your Body To Look Younger

Apart from these basic, simple things, you can buy plenty of things as cosmetic treatments to help you look younger. Many men look down on this idea as being “unmanly.” Thankfully that is gradually changing as more men realize that science can help them look younger after turning 40.

Use Sunscreen

As the overplayed radio hit from the early 2000s said, one of the best pieces of advice is to use sunscreen. The sun can dry out your skin and burn your skin cells. But even more than that, UV rays also affect the production of advanced glycation end products (mentioned earlier, as it’s also caused by sugar). So, sunlight stops our skin cells from healing and multiplying correctly.

A good sunscreen with a high SPF rating will do wonders for your skin if you use it regularly. Many modern moisturizers for men even include sunscreen to protect your skin from those harmful UV rays.


Dry and dead skin cells can make our skin sag and look older. Having a good moisturizer, and using it regularly, is crucial if we want to look younger.

The perfect moisturizer will depend on your skin type, but a good moisturizer should contain at least sun protection of SPF30 or higher and plenty of antioxidants. We already discussed the importance of sunscreen, but antioxidants will break down and neutralize free radicals, which are molecules that destroy skin cells.

If you have sensitive skin or other skin problems like acne, ask a dermatologist for a recommendation before you start using a moisturizer.

It would be best to moisturize twice daily – early in the morning after washing your face and then again at night as part of your evening routine.


Skin cells die after about three weeks due to the harsh conditions they must endure. Dead skin cells will often cling to your skin, clogging up your pores and making you look older. That’s why it’s important to exfoliate regularly. It removes the dead skin cells so that your skin looks more radiant and alive, not to mention younger.


Eye Cream

One of the parts of our faces that most prominently show our age is the area around our eyes. That’s usually where wrinkles first start to appear, and as we age, the skin below our eyes may sag and look like bags. This is often more clearly visible when we don’t get enough sleep.

Using an eye cream every night after moisturizing will help to tighten the saggy skin around your eyes, smoothing out the wrinkles and clearing up the bags. Good eye cream will give you almost instant results.


Unfortunately, age is non-negotiable. It happens to all of us. But, thankfully, looking (and acting) your age is optional. Men tend to shy away from cosmetic treatments, but once they’ve reached forty, they tend to look at things differently.

Still, just living a healthy, active life will already make a massive difference to how old you look and feel. Here’s 10 tiny healthy habits you can also implement next to improve your life.