Friday, 22 March 2019 01:26

Antioxidants: multifunctional ingredients

Skincare’s more powerful antioxidants

Although the human body has its own internal antioxidant defense system, daily use of topical antioxidants dramatically increases your skin’s protection against the visible signs of aging. The following are some of the most effective antioxidants to add to your skincare regimen:

L-ascorbic acid is the only true form of vitamin C and it is the only ingredient to provide all of vitamin C’s topical benefits, including plumping and firming. Topically applied reduces skin damage, even that caused by UV damage, making it a great morning antioxidant.

Tocopherol is the pure form of vitamin E and is an excellent antioxidant. It is fat-soluble, protecting lipids in the body, including cell membranes, from oxidation. It is an unstable molecule on its own, but when paired with L-ascorbic acid, the two antioxidants stabilize each other for double the benefits.

Glutathione is part of the body’s natural antioxidant system. Many of the most commonly used antioxidants work by regenerating glutathione. It neutralizes current and prevents future oxidation. Glutathione also works as a co-antioxidant that supports L-ascorbic acid and vitamin E.

Green tea is the source of several potent polyphenol antioxidants. Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) is thought to be responsible for green tea’s primary antioxidant, calming, soothing and skin cancer prevention benefits. EGCG has been shown to prevent the formation of several highly damaging free radicals.

Genistein is an isoflavone derived from soybeans that increases the activity of the skin’s own antioxidants. Studies suggest that genistein prevents free radical production. Genistein also interferes with DNA damage and mutation due to UV exposure. Studies show genistein provides short- and long-term UV damage prevention, including redness, skin cancer and visible skin aging.

Resveratrol is found in berries, grapes and red wine. It is a potent polyphenolic antioxidant that has been shown to suppress the production of a variety of free radicals. Studies have also shown that resveratrol has a preventative effect on tumor formation within the skin.

Silymarin is a powerful flavonoid antioxidant found in milk thistle whose most active component is silybin. Research shows that silybin inhibits lipid peroxidation, free radical production and increases the amount of the skin’s natural antioxidant glutathione.

Caffeine is capable of scavenging a variety of damaging free radicals. Studies comparing caffeinated and decaffeinated beverages showed a marked increase in the antioxidant activity of those containing caffeine. Research also suggests that topical application of caffeine can reduce the potential of developing skin cancer by forcing damaged, UV-exposed skin cells into apoptosis [cell death].

Ergothioneine is naturally found in many plant species. It helps to boost the protective capabilities of traditional antioxidants, such as L-ascorbic acid. Ergothioneine has been shown to correct and prevent free radical damage.

Ubiquinone is also known as Coenzyme Q10 or CoQ10 and is naturally found in the body, but amounts decrease as we age. When applied topically, it is a powerful anti-aging antioxidant that reduces signs of skin damage and free radical damage.

All of these antioxidants can be found in a range of PCA SKIN® daily care products and professional treatments.

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