"There is a fountain of youth: it is your mind, your talents, the creativity you bring to your life and the lives of people you love. When you learn to tap this source, you will truly have defeated age." ~Sophia Loren

440px-Sophia_Loren_-_1959The lovely Ms. Loren put it quite eloquently, if you ask me. But if you wanted to tap into a fountain of youth on the physical side, how can you maintain a young appearance without going under the knife?

Here are six things you can do to look younger instantly.

* Smile more. Confidence is sexy and sexy is youthful. Whiten your teeth, or get veneers if necessary. Whiter teeth will make you look younger. Once you have the gorgeous smile you've always wanted, put it to good use and you'll get more attention than you did 10 years ago. 

* Minimize your makeup. You might think that heavy foundation will cover your wrinkles, but it does just the opposite. Caking it on causes the makeup to settle into wrinkles and exaggerate them. The same is true for eye shadow. A smart rule of thumb: less is more.

* Save yourself from the sun. Those UV rays are our enemy when it comes to aging. Always use a moisturizer with SPF 15 or above. Look for skin creams containing antioxidants like vitamin C and E for increased protection.

* Sleep. They don't call it "beauty sleep" for nothing. If you don't get enough sleep (about seven hours every night), your metabolism and hormone production can be hindered, inviting the early effects of age.

* Improve your posture. Taking calcium will help prevent osteoporosis, but a slumping stoop will age you immediately. Strengthen your core - those abdominal muscles - for a straighter back and taller body. Pilates is a perfect way to improve your posture, giving you a longer, leaner look.

* Evaluate your wardrobe. Dressing younger doesn't have to mean super low-rise jeans and belly shirts. A casual, yet tailored look will keep you from appearing fussy and out-of-style. A great T-shirt with well-fitting pants and great accessories creates a comfortable, yet hip everyday "uniform" for a casual dresser. 

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