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7SURPRISING SIGNS OF AGING
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7SURPRISING SIGNS OF AGING

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7SURPRISING SIGNS OF AGING

6 SPOTTED HANDS

Despite their name, those liver spots on the backs of your hands have nothing to do with the health of that organ. These flat, dark markings are a sign of sun exposure, says Craig Vander Kolk, M.D., director of cosmetic medicine and surgery at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore. "The sun stimulates the pigment in your skin, causing it to move through the skin's layers and ultimately settle into localized spots." Common after age 40, age spots aren't a danger to anything but your vanity.

The fix: Skin-bleaching creams containing an ingredient called hydroquinone can soften the appearance of spots, but use caution if you have sensitive skin. (One to try: Ambi Skincare Fade Cream, $5 at major retailers.) Lasers and chemical peels can help too. And slather on sunblock to prevent new age spots from forming and existing ones from darkening.

7 DISAPPEARING

EYEBROWS

Pluck-happy in your earlier years? You may be paying the price now. "When hair is traumatically pulled out of the follicle repeatedly, it might not grow back," Papantoniou says. The result: eyebrows that are sparse even decades later.

Even if you never touched tweezers, the same age-related hormones responsible for hair loss on the head can deplete facial hair. If your brows are suddenly visibly thinner than normal, see an endocrinologist — you may have a vitamin deficiency or thyroid condition.

The fix: To preserve and protect fragile brows, Neia Frinhani, wax and brow specialist at the Adam Broderick Salon & Spa in Ridgeield, Conn., recommends sleeping on your back or on a silk pillowcase to reduce friction. Trim — don't pluck — unruly brow hairs. Other options include using one of the many brow-filling products available, looking into the growing market in permanent makeup brows (similar to tattooing) or consulting a dermatologist about hair-growth methods.

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