The Secret of Good Skincare: Key Ingredients Your Skin Needs
What ingredients do cosmeceuticals have, that really make a difference to your skin? There are a number of essential ‘agents’ which are proven to play an important role in skin health. These include Antioxidants and Retinol, or Vitamin A.
Antioxidants help to protect the skin from oxidative stress and cell damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals are cell-damaging molecules that are created by everyday exposure to UV rays and pollution.
Proven skin-beneficial topical antioxidants include:
- Vitamin C (L-Ascorbic Acid): L-Ascorbic Acid is pure active Vitamin C. A multifunctional antioxidant, it can effectively permeate the skin to help brighten the skin and reduce the signs of ageing.
- Vitamin E (Tocopherol): Vitamin E is the most abundant natural antioxidant in your skin, found in the Epidermis and Dermis. Essential to skin health, it helps to protect the skin from free radical damage, absorbing UV light to fight against photo ageing. Ageing and damage can reduce your skin’s natural supply of Vitamin E, which is why topical application can help keep skin healthy.
- Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide): Vitamin B3 improves the barrier function of the skin by reducing water loss. It helps to fight inflammation, reduce the appearance of blemishes and redness and can help to improve fine lines, wrinkles and skin elasticity.
- Co-Q10 (Ubiquinone): Co-Q10 is another of your body’s natural antioxidants, vital to cell function and development and helping to reduce oxidative damage to the skin. As a small molecule Co-Q10 can easily permeate the skin.
- Glutathione: Glutathione is an antioxidant that helps with skin brightening and lightening too create an even skin tone. A free-radical fighter, it is produced naturally by the body.
Vitamin A (Retinol)
Active Vitamin A – or Retinol - is one of best product ingredients for anti-ageing. It helps to:
- Prevent collagen breakdown caused by free radicals
- Stimulate collagen production, plumping up the skin and minimising wrinkles
- Increase the rate of cell turnover, which improves skin tone and appearance
Vitamin A comes in different strength formulations in skincare, with high-strength Vitamin A products only available on prescription.
Most skincare products that you can buy contain Retinol or Retinaldehyde. Sun protection however is vital when using Vitamin A, as it is increases your skin’s sensitivity to sunlight.