ṖŔĪИƇƐZZ ŔƐSƐΛŔƇĤ: Anti-Aging Superstars: Ingredients with Real Results

Friday, December 3, 2010

Anti-Aging Superstars: Ingredients with Real Results

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AHAs and BHA: Take Skin Beyond Smooth
What they do: For all skin types, it is extremely helpful to exfoliate the surface layers of skin. Sun-damaged skin causes the outer layer of skin to become abnormally thick. For those with blemish-prone skin, the outer layer of skin is genetically thicker. Whether you use a product with glycolic or lactic acids, these alpha hydroxy acids (AHA) or salicylic acid (BHA, which is exceptional for normal to oily/combination skin) remove the outer layer of built-up dead skin cells, allowing healthier cells to come to the surface and smoothing the surface, thus eliminating some wrinkling. There also is a good deal of research showing that using a well-formulated AHA product can increase collagen production. AHAs in skin-care products are effective in concentrations ranging from 5% to 15%; salicylic acid is effective in 1% to 2% concentrations.

Retinol: Vitamin A for Anti-Aging
What it does: Retinol is the term used for the entire vitamin A molecule. Applied to skin, retinol is a beneficial cell-communicating ingredient and an antioxidant. Simply put, it helps skin cells create better, healthier skin cells and increases the amount of skin-support substances. Retinol has been shown to increase the skin´s collagen production and glycosaminoglycan content, resulting in firmer skin with an improved texture and enhanced barrier function. Although it is not the only ingredient to look for in an anti-aging product, it deserves strong consideration by anyone who wants to keep their skin in top shape through the years. In skin-care products, it is found in the form of retinol, retinyl palmitate, and retinylaldehyde. In prescription-only skin-care products, it is in the form of retinoic acid (also called tretinoin).

Vitamin C: "C" the Difference it Makes
What it does: One of the most well-researched and beneficial vitamins you can apply topically is vitamin C. It has been shown to increase collagen production (including dermal collagen, which is significant for wrinkle reduction), reduce the appearance of skin discolorations, strengthen skin´s barrier response, enhance skin´s repair process, reduce inflammation, and help skin better withstand exposure to sunlight, whether protected by sunscreen or not.

Vitamin C comes in many forms, with ascorbic acid being the most common. Other forms of vitamin C include magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, L-ascorbic acid, tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate, ascorbyl palmitate, ascorbyl glucosamine, and ascorbyl tetraisopalmitate.

Vitamin E: In a League of its Own
What it does: Vitamin E (technical name tocopherol) is considered an antioxidant superstar in its own right. This fat-soluble vitamin is available in various forms with eight biologically active components, such as alpha tocopherol and beta tocopherol, or combined in an ingredient called tocotrienols. Simply put, vitamin E in all of its forms works in several different ways to protect cell membranes from oxidative damage and to prevent collagen from being destroyed. It also works in powerful synergy with vitamin C. Vitamin E on an ingredient label can be tocopheryl acetate, tocopheryl linoleate, tocotrienols, alpha tocopherol, and tocopheryl succinate.

Niacinamide: Vitamin B at its Best
What it does: Niacinamide, also known as nicotinamide, is the active component of vitamin B3. When applied topically, niacinamide has been shown to increase ceramide and free fatty acid levels in skin, prevent skin from losing water content, and stimulate microcirculation in the dermis. It also has a growing reputation for being able to address skin discolorations (often in tandem with other proven skin-lightening agents such as vitamin C and glucosamine) and to reduce acne. It definitely belongs on the A-list of great skin-care ingredients regardless of your skin-care concern.

Green and White Tea
What they do: Whether you drink green or white tea, both contain excellent antioxidants from the plant Camellia sinensis and both deserve your attention. There are four major antioxidant components of green and white tea, of which Epigallocatechin 3-gallate (EGCG) is the most abundant and biologically active. Green tea is found more commonly in cosmetics than white tea, but both work quite well to reduce inflammation, build collagen, and reduce cell damage by impeding the harmful effects of sun exposure. EGCG also is found in cosmetics and is probably a more potent stable way to get the antioxidant benefit on skin.

What it does: Like any antioxidant, resveratrol has incredible protective benefit for skin. In nature it is found in foods such as grapes, nuts, fruits, and red wine. When applied topically, resveratrol protects against sun damage, improves collagen synthesis, and reduces cell damage. It is a stable, potent antioxidant worth finding in a skin-care product. In addition, studies have shown that resveratrol inhibits tumor development.

Grape Seed
What it does: Grape seed has been shown to be a potent antioxidant that significantly reduces free-radical damage. Combining it with other antioxidants greatly enhances its efficacy. It also has wound-healing properties. Regardless of the type of grape, it has antioxidant potential. For fighting wrinkles, it is one of the superstars.

What they do: Curcuminoids are various compounds derived from the spice turmeric. Turmeric is the major ingredient in curry powder, a spice used to flavor many types of food. The curcuminoids are the major active constituents of turmeric. Curcumin is but one of these components, and is chemically known as diferuloylmethane). Curcumin has potent anti-inflammatory properties, both internally and externally (applied to skin). It also has activity against tumor formation. It is capable of causing cancerous cells to die while preserving healthy cells. The curcuminoids also have potent antioxidant ability and work to suppress excess melanin production in the presence of sunlight. Curcuminoids are considered safe for use on skin. They gain anti-aging superstar status due to their multiple benefits in addressing the underlying factors (chronic inflammation, irritation, sun damage) that cause skin to look older and become less able to repair itself.

Soy Isoflavones/Extract (Genistein)
What they do: Soy and its components have an amazing amount of research showing them to be powerful antioxidants and beneficial for skin. Studies show that these derivatives inhibit environmental damage, reduce irritation, improve skin texture, build collagen, and fight sun damage. Genistein (a component of soy) benefits skin´s elasticity, strengthens the skin´s dermis, and prevents DNA damage. There is also research showing it improves the appearance of scars.

What it does: Pomegranate and its extracts have antioxidant and anticancer properties that, while not conclusively demonstrated on human skin, show promise in animal and in vitro studies. Topical application of products containing pomegranate may improve the appearance of wrinkled skin by reducing inflammation and forestalling further damage. Research also shows that an extract from pomegranate peel has an inhibitory effect on the collagen-depleting substance MMP-1.

What they do: Ceramides make up about 20% of the skin´s intercellular matrix, the "glue" that holds skin cells together, helping skin maintain its appearance and protecting it. When the skin´s "matrix," also known as the skin´s outer barrier, is impaired, whether from sun damage, a dry environment, or irritating skin-care product, ceramides decrease and leave the skin vulnerable. Replenishing the skin´s ceramide content is a powerful way to protect skin and help it act and look younger.

Linoleic / Linolenic Acids / Phospholipids
What they do: These fatty acids replenish the skin´s intercellular matrix, preserving its appearance. In addition, all of them function as cell-communicating ingredients, working to "tell" the appropriate skin cells how to function in a healthier manner. They also help reduce inflammation, believed to be a key factor in how the skin ages.

Source: CosmeticsCop.com


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