Selling cosmetics and supplements containing “miracle” anti-aging ingredients is the bread and butter of the beauty industry. And a quick glance at the facial cream aisle shows how popular antioxidants have become in recent years. But is using antioxidants on your skin really as good as it is cracked?
Getting your first wrinkle while you are still enjoying your twenties can come as an unpleasant surprise. It is perfectly normal for the skin to begin to show signs of aging at this early stage, but it can make many people anxious about the inevitable passage of time. Cosmetology brands can also put a high price tag on these miraculous anti-aging products, so knowing which ingredients can really help your skin thrive is a lot of stress on you. And can save money.
In this article we will look at the science behind its use Antioxidant For the skin, and what some experienced skin professionals have to say.
How Do Antioxidants Work?
To understand what antioxidants are and how they work, we need to explain what they are. Free radicals that is. When our bodies come into contact with biological and environmental stressors such as air pollution, cigarette smoke, ultraviolet rays, harmful bacteria and viruses, they react by producing these highly bioactive compounds. Free radicals miss one or more electrons in the atomic structure and “steal” electrons from other molecules until they are more stable. This process, called oxidative stress, can cause extensive damage to the DNA chains and cell membranes of our body.
It may sound counterintuitive, but it requires some oxidative stress. Without it, our bodies would have a hard time fighting infections and getting rid of defective cells. However, overkill of this process can have many adverse health effects. That’s when antioxidants intervene.
Antioxidants are a term used to describe compounds that can counteract free radicals, abandoning some of their own electrons and protecting cells from damage. Our body naturally produces some of these important compounds, many of which need to be taken with food or applied topically.
What Do Antioxidants Do To Your Skin?
Nutrition is a major factor in skin health. It is necessary to keep various nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, fatty acids and phytonutrients in the best condition. Antioxidants play an important role in maintaining their health and youthful appearance, as our skin routinely comes into contact with a myriad of environmental and biological stressors. Check out 5 days A simple Mediterranean diet meal plan To check your nutrition.
Free radicals can break down collagen in the skin, interfere with the natural repair process and cause inflammation.According to the review published in Dermatology journal (Opens in a new tab), These harmful compounds contribute significantly to skin aging by promoting wrinkles, uneven skin tone, atypical pigmentation and acne development. They also play an important role in causing chloasma, a skin condition usually characterized by brown, blue, or gray spots or spots around the face and neck.
Dr. Julia Tzu, MD, FAAD, Founder and Medical Director Wall Street Dermatology (Opens in a new tab), Point out that antioxidants can be an effective cure for this problem. “Antioxidants help remove free radicals in the skin that cause cell damage and inflammation,” she says. “Routine use of antioxidants may reduce cell damage and inflammation that can lead to the formation of skin cancer and signs of aging.”
A significant amount of oxidative stress on the skin can result from UV exposure.
“Antioxidants act as a powerful protective aid in sunscreens, enhancing personal protection from damage caused by exposure to UV light and other common contaminants,” the skin said. Dr. Julie Karen, a dermatologist, explains. CompleteSkinMD (Opens in a new tab) Clinic. “Ideally, products containing antioxidants should be applied daily under broad-spectrum sunscreens, or you can opt for sunscreens that incorporate antioxidant technology into your product.”
According to the article International Journal of Molecular Science (Opens in a new tab)Many plants produce secondary metabolites to protect themselves from excessive radiation, such as phenolic compounds, ascorbic acid, carotenoids, and tocopherols, to name just a few. To some extent, these substances exhibit similar antioxidant properties in our body.
So should you focus on getting your antioxidants from your diet, or should you focus on applying them topically? Experts agree that both routes can work in your favor.
“It’s best to digest them with food, because in this way they benefit the whole body, including the intestines and heart,” says Dr. Anton Alexandrov. Doctify-Reviewed (Opens in a new tab) Dermatologist. “But the most efficient way to protect the skin is to apply it topically, because higher concentrations are locally accumulated in the skin, especially from UV rays on the surface of the skin. This is not the case for collagen protection, as collagen is located deeper and it is more difficult for antioxidants to penetrate the skin to a sufficient depth when applied topically. ”
Dr. Two points out that the effectiveness of a particular antioxidant may depend on the treatment it is used for. “For superficial skin-related concerns of interest, topical application provides a more focused approach given intensive delivery to the site of concern. Ingestion provides an overall, including skin. It may benefit your health, but its effects are not targeted at the skin. “
What are the best antioxidants for your skin?
Known for its ability to strengthen our immune system, Vitamin C It is also a powerful antioxidant that maintains the health and integrity of our skin.
“Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that reduces hyperpigmentation and promotes collagen production,” says Dr. Tzu.
According to the review published in Nutrients (Opens in a new tab) Journal, Vitamin C is one of the most important factors in the production of collagen in the skin and protection from UV damage to the skin. It can also reduce the appearance of dark spots by blocking the excessive production of skin pigments. When used with creams and serums, Vitamin C can regulate the production of sebum. evidence (Opens in a new tab) May reduce the visibility of acne lesions.
According to Dr. Alexandrov, “Alphatocopherol or Vitamin E It is the most efficient fat-soluble antioxidant that protects cell membranes from oxidation. ”
Multiple studies (Opens in a new tab) We have demonstrated how this micronutrient maintains the integrity of the skin lipid component and reduces the risk of developing autoimmune skin conditions such as atopic eczema (itching, cracking, painful skin). psoriasis..
Especially when used with creams and sesame oils, Vitamin E can protect against sunburn, excessive pigmentation and even skin cancer. Drug metabolism review (Opens in a new tab) journal.
Vitamin D It is essential for maintaining the health of our bones and strengthening our immune system. A lesser-known fact is that this nutrient also helps protect the skin from light damage and inflammation.According to the review published in International Journal of Molecular Science (Opens in a new tab), The active metabolite of vitamin D regulates the growth of keratinocytes, the most predominant cell type in the skin, and is involved in the healing of injured and injured tissue. Vitamin D also prevents DNA damage in that pathway, slows down the aging process, and reduces the risk of developing skin cancer.
Vitamin B3 (nicotinamide)
Vitamin B3 (Also known as nicotinic acid, niacin or niacinamide) helps regulate blood lipid levels, lower blood pressure, increase brain function and increase energy levels. It is also an important antioxidant for skin health.
“Niacinamide is a powerful antioxidant that helps reduce hyperpigmentation and redness, strengthens the skin barrier, and reduces inflammation,” explains Dr. Tzu. When taken with food or with supplements, niacinamide reduces the levels of oxidative stress and inflammatory response in skin cells, Antioxidant (Opens in a new tab) journal.
When applied topically, vitamin B3 tends to be effective in treating acne, hyperpigmentation, atopic dermatitis, and rosacea. Cosmetic Dermatology Journal (Opens in a new tab)..
Vitamin A and retinoids
Vitamin AAlso known as retinol, it can also provide many benefits to our skin. As a powerful antioxidant, vitamin A can protect against harmful UV rays and improve the appearance of wrinkled and sagging skin.
According to the review published in cell (Opens in a new tab) Journal, vitamin A also plays an important role in reducing the risk of developing skin cancer, acne and psoriasis. However, keep in mind that topically applied retinoids can cause irritation reactions such as burning sensations and scales on the skin.
Astaxanthin is naturally produced by many bacteria, microalgaes and yeasts. It is also the pigment that gives salmon the characteristic pink color.According to the review published in Cosmetic Dermatology Journal (Opens in a new tab) Journal, this compound may be especially helpful in preventing skin diseases and speeding up their repair process.Research is ongoing, but there are some evidence (Opens in a new tab) The combination of topical and oral astaxanthin is effective in fixing water in the skin and smoothing out fine wrinkles.
Resveratrol Is a type of polyphenolic antioxidant found primarily in red grapes, red wine, grape juice, peanuts, cocoa and berries. Most studies have examined this compound in relation to its beneficial effects on cardiovascular health, evidence (Opens in a new tab) It suggests that polyphenols like resveratrol can also provide protection against photodamage, skin infections and skin cancer, especially when taken with foods and dietary supplements.
“Polyphenols such as resveratrol, flavonoids, and green tea extract actives are very powerful antioxidants that help reduce signs of aging and inflammation and protect the skin from cancer and light damage,” Dr. Tzu said. Explains.
Green tea polyphenols
You’ve probably heard of a wide range of health benefits associated with green tea intake. It is one of the most widely consumed beverages in the world and is also a rich source of polyphenol antioxidants with strong anti-wrinkle effects.
“They are one of the most powerful and formally studied antioxidants,” Dr. Karen agrees.According to the review published in Nutrients (Opens in a new tab) Journal, Green Tea Polyphenols can neutralize free radicals, increase the rate of collagen and elastin fiber production, and lower levels of collagen-degrading enzymes in the skin. It can also delay the onset of skin cancer.
Injecting green tea gives you a lot of these polyphenols, but if you don’t like the rustic taste, many dietary supplements are also available. Many cosmetics also include them in their ingredient list.
What Do Antioxidants Do To Your Skin?
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