The days of cold creams and fancy jars with decadent but empty promises are so pass. Cosmeceutical skincare brands are offering more than lush advertising and catch phrases: results and science in our skincare are now far more readily available. Companies with real clout are not afraid of having their products tested and we’re starting to see cold hard evidence of the results of certain ingredients.
Products are now packed with antioxidants, natural acids, vitamins, peptides and other punchy ingredients, all of which work actively to replenish the skin and to activate it to renew itself within its dermal layers.
Some key ingredients to keep your eyes on are:
- Antioxidants these are made up of vitamins and minerals and they have the ability to fight free radicals. Free radicals are unstable molecules that attack our cells and damage our DNA. Free radicals accelerate our ageing process and cause wrinkles and dull, dry skin. Antioxidants in skin care that have found to be the most effective are green tea extract, CoEnzyme Q10 and vitamins A, C and E.
- Alpha Hydroxy Acids originate from natural sources and include glycolic, lactic, citric, malic and tartaric acids. Alpha Hydoxy Acids (AHAs) are used for their ability to remove dead skincells. Because of their fantastic ability to exfoliate, they’re useful in the treatment of fixed lines, pigmentation, acne scars and they help make the skin appear more vibrant.
- Epidermal Growth Factor – works to increase the number of epidermal cells as well as the production of collagen, elastic and natural hyaluronic acid to assist with skin tone and elasticity. EGF helps the skin to renew itself more quickly.
- Hyaluronic Acid occurs in our bodies naturally and it helps our skin to retain and attract moisture. Hyaluronic acid is often used in dermal fillers to plump the skin and itâs used very frequently in moisturisers and serums to boost the skin’s moisture levels, delivering hydration and helping the skin to keep the moisture in so the skin looks plump and dewy.
- Peptides are like little messengers telling your skin cells to behave in a certain way. Some peptides will help with microcirculation in the skin but peptides are very commonly used in skincare to boost the skinâs collagen production, creating more elasticity and helping to reduce the appearance of lines. Peptides are often combined with copper and this combination is particularly effective in triggering collagen production.
- Plant Stem Cells are used to trigger the skin to go into repair mode and assist it to produce more collagen and elastin. Our own skin stem cells control the formation of new cells and are directly responsible for the youthfulness of the skin. If stem cells die, the skin then ages.
- Retinol promotes collagen production, therefore plumping the skin and working on lines and wrinkles. It speeds up skin cell turnover and exfoliates the skin, so itâs particularly effective in the treatment of uneven skintone and pigmentation.
- Salicylic Acid works brilliantly at dissolving oil blockages in the pores and exfoliates the skin. It’s used in acne treatments and also in age prevention treatments, because it helps smooth the texture and improves skin dullness.
- Vitamin C is an antioxidant known to stimulate the production of collagen, working to plump the skin, minimising fine lines, wrinkles and scars. It’s also commonly used to help support the removal of pigmentation. Much of the vitamin C we consume passes through our bodies without getting to the skin, so topical application is extremely helpful to boost the skin.