As much as we love a sweet treat, we know sugar should be enjoyed in moderation. But did you know that excess sugar consumption can be the reason our skin is sagging and lacklustre too?

Our Senior Brand Ambassador, Emma Coleman, explains the top three ways sugar is damaging your skin and some simple changes you can make to your daily routine to improve firmness and radiance…

1.Excess sugar intake

Stock image of 3 chocolate bars stacked one on top of the other

With increased intake of sugar, the molecules attach to the proteins and form free radicals. The presence of these radicals, in turn, can cause oxidative damage in our body which is evident on our skin, hair, nails and overall energy levels in the body. This process is known as glycation and can lead to premature ageing of the skin. Collagen and elastin are vital for the skin to look and feel healthy. With hyperglycemia causing collagen damage, the skin can look dull, devoid of lustre, extremely dry, saggy and wrinkled.

Reducing and controlling the intake of sugar is the first step to restoring the health of your skin. For occasional sugar cravings, I recommend including more natural sugars in the diet; for example, swapping sugary drinks for honey and milk chocolate bars for organic chocolate containing a high percentage of cocoa. 

2.The menopause effect

Model wearing MAGNITONE GetLit LED mask with red light on, while looking at her phone

In peri and post-menopause, the body and skin collagen naturally becomes depleted due to a reduction in oestrogen levels. Eating high levels of processed sugars at this time not only worsens general menopausal symptoms, but also increases skin ageing due to its effects on collagen and elastin fibres. As a result, skin may appear dehydrated, dull and wrinkled with increased pallor.

To help reverse the effects of glycation, at-home devices with Microcurrent and Red LED Light can help to stimulate collagen production and encourage cell renewal. LiftOff® Microcurrent Facial Toning Device is an affordable and easy-to-use at-home solution that has been clinically proven to improve skin firmness up to 47% with regular use over 4 weeks. The GetLit® LED Mask can also be used alongside it on the red LED setting to improve results and increase radiance. Using a good cleansing brush every day can also help to improve skin tone and micro circulation. Try BareFaced3 with its clinically proven Vibra-Sonic® technology. All of these devices carry the M-tick, the world’s first menopause-friendly symbol.

3.Watch the booze

Stock image of 2 glasses of red wine

Alcohol contains high levels of sugars and causes the skin to become flushed as alcohol is a vasodilator, causing blood vessels beneath the skin's surface to become dilated. Inability to break down and digest alcohol consumed in large volumes can be another possible cause of facial redness with a hangover. Alcohol is also highly dehydrating as it is a diuretic, causing us to pass water more frequently. One study provided evidence that women who consumed more than 8 alcoholic drinks per week were more susceptible to increased upper facial lines, under eye puffiness, oral commissures, midface volume loss and blood vessel visibility. 

When you reach for your evening glass of Pinot, try to make the switch to a low sugar or low/no alcohol alternative. GenM fellow partner brand, DrinkWell, is the ultimate destination for 'better for you' drinks in the UK. Their extensive selection offers hundreds of options to satisfy every palate, from sugar free wines and refreshing low carb beers to premium reduced ABV spirits and more. Shop now at