Effects of Smoking
Description of a Smoker’s Face.
I. A person who has been smoking a pack of cigarettes each day takes on the wrinkles of a non-smoker 1.4 times older than her/him, so that:
- A 20 year-old smoker would look like a 28 year-old non-smoker.
- A 30 year-old would look 42.
- A 40 year-old would look 56.
- A 50 year-old would look 70.
These are conservative comparisons. The rate may actually accelerate as people age, so that people in their 40's look a full 20 years older. A good description we found was that the difference between identical twins when one smokes and the other doesn't is like the before and after pictures of a face-lift.
II. Smokers wrinkles are described as:
- Typically radiating at right angles from upper and lower lips
- In the crow’s foot area, smokers’ wrinkles were narrow, deep, and sharply contoured compared to non-smokers’ which were broad-based, more widely open, round-edged
- Deep lines on cheeks or numerous shallow lines on cheeks and lower jaw
III. Most current smokers have a grayish pallor to whatever their normal skin tone would be, because they lose any rosy tint that they would normally have. (This does go away when they have quit for a while.)
IV. Many smokers also exhibit subtle gauntness of facial features with prominence of the underlying bony contours, but that is probably beyond our expectations for this project, unless it comes along with the appropriate older faces anyway.
Data provided by Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, N.Y.