As we enter the new year, it is time to give your skin some much needed tender-loving-care after the festive season. When scouting for the perfect damage repair products, you may have come across certain terms on the label that leave you baffled. While on the look-out for creams and serums to help your skin detox, it’s important to know about some ingredients and also understand what do they really do. Here are some important ingredients found in most products that every beauty aficionado needs to know about.
1) Collagen: Collagen is a protein produced by our cells that helps “hold” the skin together. Collagen keeps the skin looking younger and giving it firmness and elasticity. When we are young, our skin stays plump and smooth because it constantly regenerates itself. But as we age, collagen production slows – and existing collagen can get damaged due to sun exposure and unhealthy skin habits. This results in wrinkles and sagging skin. Collagen infused products help smoothen the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines.
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2) Elastin: Another protein present in the skin which is as important as collagen, Elastin is a protein found in any elastic connective tissue in the body. It is responsible for the ability of the skin to resume original shape after being stretched. The proportion of Elastin in the skin usually peeks in adolescence or early adulthood and declines thereafter. Beauty products with Elastin restore the skins with its natural firmness and bounce.
3) Hyaluronic Acid: As body collagen declines, the appearance of wrinkles and discoloration becomes more visible. Maximizing collagen levels will keep your skin supple. Hyaluronic acid keeps collagen synthesis up and helps retain skin moisture.
4) Glycolic acid: Derived from cane sugar, glycolic acid has the smallest molecules in the AHA group. This property ensures that it penetrates the skin deeply and easily, making it the most effective ingredient for treating fine lines, acne, blackheads, dullness and oiliness.
5) Salicylic Acid: While salicylic acid lotions are not for everyone, they can benefit many skin types when used appropriately. When applied, the lotion causes the uppermost layer of skin to swell, soften and then peel, removing dead skin cells leaving you with fresh, bright skin.
6) Niacinamide: This component of vitamin B3 has been shown to increase ceramide and free fatty acid levels in skin, thereby preventing skin from losing water content and stimulating microcirculation in the dermis. It also has a growing reputation for being able to lighten skin discolorations and reduce acne.
7) Retinol: Simply put, it helps your skin produce better, healthier skin cells while increasing the amount of skin-support substances. It has been shown to increase the skin’s collagen production and glycosaminoglycan content, resulting in firmer skin with an improved texture and enhanced barrier function.
8) AHA and BHA: AHAs are best for normal-to-dry or sun-damaged skin because they help bind moisture and improve healthy collagen production and smooth an uneven skin texture. BHA is best for normal-to-oily or breakout-prone skin while also being excellent for reducing redness from rosacea.
9) Resveratrol: Like any antioxidant, resveratrol has incredible protective benefits for the skin. When applied topically, resveratrol protects against sun damage, improves collagen synthesis and reduces cell damage.
10) Curcuminoids: Found in the spice turmeric, it has potent anti-inflammatory properties, both internally and externally. It also works to suppress excess melanin production in the presence of sunlight and will help reduce chronic inflammation, irritation and sun damage that makes your skin look dull.