“Aging is inevitable. Healthy beautiful skin is in your hands.”
Our aging process begins when we’re born. An anti-aging skin care regimen should therefore be implemented as early as possible in your life. Dermatologists say the earlier, the better results you will deliver by applying a proper regimen. Most of us know of the general nourishing requirements that our skin requires. For some, it may the case that experience has lead to that awareness, and for some of us it may be general knowledge acquired. Whatever the case may be, and whatever skin type you may have, there are basic requirements and ingredients that our skin needs in order to maintain its youthful look and health. This article will explain the key ingredients and their main purpose.
Good Habits are Hard to Start, Bad Habits are Hard to Stop.
We form and end habits throughout life starting at when we’re born. During our last state of adolescence (ages 18-23), our skin becomes most vulnerable to the surrounding environment (internal and external). This is mainly due to habits we have kept and/or started forming during this time. Beginning a well based skin care regimen at age 18 is ideal, and at age 23 is a necessity.
Don’t Fight .. Prevent.
A basic, consistent (this is key), routine starting earlier as possible in life can go a long way and reflect healthy beautiful skin at later years. With the multitude of skin care products that have a multitude of chemicals, minerals, and ingredients; biological and non-biological, it can be a very tedious task to figure which one is right for you. Always keep these two points in mind to find your way in making a decision:
- Know what you are looking for (ingredients, minerals, etc. and their implications elaborated below)
- Always read the labels
Simplicity is Beauty.
Complex products can have complex outcomes. To keep your state of regimen consistent, look for simplicity in products. Quality should not be overlooked, but simplicity here implies that you should get the product if what you are looking for is on it’s label, and not something else that is introduced while you are reading the label.
The ingredients mentioned here are verified by professional dermatologists and skin care professionals and are generally accepted as the basic necessity for optimal skin cell health. These ingredients have been selected as they work together to complement your skins health.
1. Broad Spectrum Sunscreen with SPF 30 or Higher
The sun can do a lot of damage to the skin if the skin is not well protected. Some of this damage is irreversible or will take a long time to heal. As mentioned, consistency is key for skin care (as for anything). Always carry sunscreen with you. Dermatologists suggest broad spectrum SPF 30 or higher for optimal protection. Most of us know that some sunscreens have active ingredients that complement the purpose of the sun screening. Active ingredients in sunscreens come in two forms, mineral and chemical filters, which are used to stabilize sunlight while protecting the skin, using different methods depending on the products and ingredients used. Active ingredients in sunscreen may damage the skins health and in some cases indicate that they may mimic hormones and disrupt the hormone system (EWG: The Trouble With Sunscreen Chemicals)
If you aren’t careful about sun protection, even the most effective, anti-aging ingredients won’t be able to deliver the results you’re looking for.
The value in your skin care regimen: Tan with class. Don’t apply an expensive sunscreen lotion and stay hours exposed under the sun. Moderate your sunlight exposure and use a simple healthy sunscreen lotion. As a note of caution: avoid sunscreen lotion that has oxybenzone. This chemical is invasive and can penetrate the skin, cause allergic skin reactions and may disrupt hormones.
2. Vitamin B3
Also known as niacinamide and nicotinic acid, the brightening and moisturizing effect of B3 is an essential element for skin care and health. Assuming skin is being protected from sun exposure, niacinamide improves skin elasticity and enhances its barrier function. Additionally, it helps with pigmentary conditions, and evens the skin tone. Topically applied niacinamide has been shown to increase ceramide and free fatty acid levels in skin (more on this next).
The value in your skin care regimen: Look for skin care products that have niacinamide as one of the top ingredients.
Dryness is of the the conditions that should be prevented at all times to maintain skin health and prevent skin cell damage. Usually, lipids are listed as ceramides and fatty acids. Ceramides, fatty acids (and cholesterol) work together in the external layer of the epidermis called the stratum corneum to prevent moisture loss.
It is known from ancient times that plant lipids have been used in body care treatments to soften the skin. Clinical studies show that different oils affect the skin in different ways.
Oils rich in Omega 9 Oleic Acid are absorbed through the skin barrier more quickly and more naturally than the more unsaturated oils; this makes them good natural moisturizers. These oils are excellent as a carrier and transfer of other nutrients into the lower skin layers.
Oils rich in Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids are absorbed slower are considered to be more protective. These have the tissue regeneration role and help the body control inflammation.
The value in your skin care regimen: Look for products that are rich in Omega 9 Oleic Acid and Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids.
As most of us already know, antioxidants are free radical fighters protecting our skin, collagen and elastin from cell DNA damage. This suffices to imply that these ingredients are essential to skin health and anti-aging. Not all products are created equally or contain the same amount per ingredient. Needless to say, most consumption of antioxidants come from our diet. Eat foods rich in antioxidants and your skin will bless you. Make that a habit.
The value in your skin care regimen: For your skin to absorb a topical application efficiently, you need about 20% Vitamin C content.
5. Vitamin A
Also known as retinol, vitamin A is a cell-communicating ingredient that promotes healthy younger skin cells. It is also a powerful antioxidant that prevents the free radical damage process (which causes wrinkling, lines and other signs of aging). But wait, it gets better. This powerful ingredient has been shown to increase collagen production, fade away sun discoloration and helps build elastin (according to some research studies).
The value in your skin care regimen: Buy retinol treatments only if packaged in an opaque container that minimizes air and light exposure. Vitamin A breaks down and deteriorates when repeatedly exposed to air and light. Do not buy vitamin A/retinol in jar packaging. Be sure to apply sunlight protection the day you apply retinol and are exposed to the sun. Unprotected exposure to sunlight compromises the stability of retinol.
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