There are SO many anti-ageing skincare products out there, each promising us more than the one before. But how do you know which ones will REALLY work? In this post I share with you the crucial ingredients that your skin needs to fight off ageing and that will get the job done.
I took great care not to make this article a long winded one, so below I share the most important facts for you to know. If you would like to know more just click on the links to the informative and helpful websites I found.
Firstly it is important to realize that keeping skin healthy and young requires a combination of ingredients and products that work together to give your skin exactly what it needs.
The best “cure” for ageing is PREVENTION! The ingredients below will help PREVENT ageing, but also aid in “CURING” the skin if it is too late for prevention.
I personally believe in having a basic skincare range, and then supplementing with active serums, exfoliators and masks (all “boosters” containing the below mentioned ingredients) that target the deeper skin layers. I will be sharing more on great skincare products in future posts.
Eating healthy and exercise is also key to preventing and “curing” ageing!
We have been seeing this ingredient around a lot lately, and for good reason.
Retinol is just another name for vitamin A. Retinol is an extremely effective cell-communicating ingredient, it communicates with skin cells literally telling them to behave like a young, healthy skin cell, preventing wrinkles and increasing collagen production. It is an antioxidant, a vital ingredient in fighting the free-radical damage process that causes skin to look older. Retinol is effective in managing Acne and Eczema, as well as improving Discolorations and Wrinkles from sun damage.
While it may take several weeks to see results, it is by far one of the most effective over-the-counter anti-ageing ingredients when it comes to smoothing wrinkles, unclogging pores, lightening superficial brown spots, and improving the texture of the skin.
EXFOLIATING– one of the key steps to fighting ageing!!!
Exfoliating encourages cell turnover, which typically slows with age. A healthy cell turnover (the rate at which we make new skin cells) is about 19 to 25 days. But as we get older this cell turnover rate slows down tremendously and can take as long as 90 days (that’s 3 months for 1 cell turnover)!!!
Exfoliation is not only important for an ageing skin, but all skin conditions to improve over all skin health. It removes dead skin cells, used for treating acne scars, improves the appearance of photo-aged skin, and firms and smooths the skin. Getting rid of dead skin also lets moisturizers, serums, and skin treatments penetrate the skin and work more effectively.
METHODS OF EXFOLIATION
Mechanical Exfoliation is Exfoliation with the use of a tool or a granular exfoliating product (like a scrub), that will loosen and reduce the dead skincells on the skins surface with the use of some friction. You use either a tool (i.e. a brush or sponge) or substrate (i.e. Corn Cob Meal, Rice bran, Date Seed Powder, Oatmeal, etc.) Excessive abrasion can result in skin irritation though. For use on the face and neck I highly recommend to stay away from scrubs, or anything, with a rough/course texture. One exfoliant that I have tried that would be classed as a mechanical exfoliant, because it requires some rubbing/”scrubbing” is Rice Bran. Rice Bran is a wonderful exfoliant as the particles in it dissolve to a paste. It is a gentle, clarifying exfoliator that is not abrasive.
Chemical exfoliation utilizes chemicals such as hydroxy acids (i.e. Lactic Acid, Salicylic Acid and Glycolic Acid), Retinol (i.e. Vitamin A) and enzymes (i.e. Papain, Bromelain and protease enzymes from Bacillus microbes).
Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHA)
AHA (i.e. Lactic Acid and Glycolic Acid) are exfoliators that gently dissolve the “glue” that holds surface skin cells together, letting the dead ones slough away to reveal youthful looking skin. It gently removes the dead skin cells, stimulates cell renewal and prevents breakouts. Lactic Acid in particular has very unique effects on the skin. Whilst it is a wonderful exfoliant, it also increases the skins natural moisturizers, ceramides (skin barrier oils) and improved water barrier properties.
Salicylic Acid-Beta Hydroxy Acid (BHA)
BHA is better for use on oily skin or for treating acne. BHA differs from AHA due to it’s lipophilic nature. Lipo=fat/lipids, which means that a BHA penetrates the sebaceous (oily) substances in the hair folicle and exfoliates the pores. AHA on the other hand are water soluble and do not exfoliate that deep. This deep exfoliation is not a daily necessity and I would recommend seeing a trained skincare professional to analyze your skin’s needs and prescribe what is best suited for you.
Retinol has been included in exfoliation formulas because the skin converts Retinol to Retinoic Acid which is a potent skin exfoliation and anti-ageing agent.
Biological Enzymes like Papain and Bromelain work in the same way as AHA/BHA by dissolving the “glue” that holds surface skin together, letting the dead ones slough away. Unlike AHAs though, which are PH dependent, these are activated by water and limited in the amount of exfoliation that can be achieved. Therefore enzymes are usually a lot gentler and better for everyday use, depending on your skincare needs.
**BE SURE to buy good quality products recommended by a professional as a too high concentration of AHA or exfoliants can be damaging if not administered correctly.
In the most simplified terms, peptides are short chains of proteins.
Most importantly Peptides signal your skin to make more Collagen. Once we age collagen is destroyed and not replaced. As a result young, smooth skin becomes thin and wrinkled after a while. Peptides also deliver copper to the skin. Copper is an effective agent in healing the skin. Neuropeptides have been proven to perform like Botox whereas some peptides might block transmission of signals from nerves to your facial muscles.
Before we get to antioxidants, it is important to understand a bit about Free Radicals. Free Radicals are unstable, damaging molecules in your body caused by elements such as sunlight, smoke, and pollution. Free Radicals cause damage right at a cellular level.
A general term for a large group of natural and synthetic ingredients that work to reduce free-radical damage and environmental stress on skin. Antioxidants help prevent and repair damage to your body tissue by encouraging cell growth.
The MOST Important thing to remember, they neutralize free radicals (unstable, damaging molecules in your body caused by elements such as sunlight, smoke, and pollution)
These vital elements for skin can range from alpha lipoic acid, beta-glucan, Coenzyme Q10, grape seed extract, green tea, soybean sterols, superoxide dismutase, vitamin C (ascorbyl palmitate and magnesium ascorbyl palmitate), and vitamin E (alpha tocopherol, tocotrienols) to pomegranate, curcurmin, turmeric, and on and on and on. All red fruits and vegetables, and berries, are high in anti-oxidants.
Hyaluronic Acid (HA)
It is a humectant, meaning that it draws out water from the air to the dermis (the skin that lies below the surface).
Almost half of the body’s HA is located in the collagen of skin and it is logical that HA plays a vital role here. Hyaluronic acid helps to retain over a 1000 times its weight in water within the cells of skin, making it an excellent moisturizer. In fact, no other biological substance can retain as much water as HA resulting in soft increased smoothness, softening of skin and decreased wrinkles. Equally important is its ability to remove waste matter from cells including those where there is little blood circulation. It may even spur new collagen production.
I can not stress this enough, it is important to see a Trained Skincare Professional that will analyze your skin, and prescribe the best product range suited to your needs. I can highly recommend Dermalogica’s face mapping skin analysis. Keep an eye out for my post next Wednesday on My Current Skincare Products and Routine, and for more on Dermalogica’a face mapping.
**Please note that I am not a Dermatologist. The above information was gathered by extensive research and advice given by various skincare experts.
An Excellent website for all your anti-ageing questions, products and answers to all your skincare concerns: PAULASCHOICE
I hope this was helpful and that you learned something!