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The aging process begins when we enter the world and the effects of aging are evident in our bodies throughout our lives. Aging of the skin is mainly due to solar exposure and loss of hormones.  Depending on your age, skin type, genetic makeup, and sun exposure you may have begun to see the effects of skin damage including lines, wrinkles, and age spots. While we are aging daily it is typically individuals over 35 years of age that begin to see these effects of aging reflected in the mirror.

The sun is also a major culprit in the skin-aging process.  Ultraviolet (UV) radiation accounts for 90 percent of the symptoms of premature skin aging, resulting in lines and wrinkles, lentigos (brown freckles), telangiectases (dilated capillaries), acne and dry complexion.


After many years of research, scientists, dermatologists and plastic surgeons have discovered that a variety of natural ingredients and vitamin extracts significantly help slow down and even reverse the signs of aging skin.  Many topical products are now formulated to moisturize and hydrate the skin, lessen fine lines, reduce roughness and pigmentation, and protect the skin from sun damage.
 
If visibly reducing the signs of aging is your main skin concern look for Ingredients in your skin care products such as:

Vitamin A (Retinol) - Topical Vitamin A has been suggested to help build collagen fibers within the skin in addition to its more superficial exfoliating property. This is the basis for its use in minimizing the appearance of fine wrinkle lines. Retin-A was the first popular agent intended for acne treatment, but widely sought as a cosmetic agent to reduce wrinkles.

Vitamin C - Vitamin C or ascorbic acid acts as an antioxidant and is considered vital in wound healing because it aids in stabilizing collagen. When applied topically, vitamin C can reduce fine lines and wrinkles and may lessen the severity of sunburns.

Vitamin E is another antioxidant that has been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects on the skin. When applied topically, vitamin E can improve moisturization, softness and smoothness and also provide modest photo protection.

Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) - AHAs are designed to smooth fine lines and surface wrinkles, to improve skin texture and tone, unblock and cleanse pores,  improve oily skin or acne, and to improve the skin’s condition in general.

Glycolic Acid - Glycolic acid is the most active and beneficial of the Alpha-Hydroxy-Acids (AHAs) in skin care, plumping cells and reducing the appearance of wrinkles on the skin’s surface. Glycolic acid is also very effective in the treatment of acne.

Peptides - Peptides are the latest scientific breakthrough in skin rejuvenation. Copper has been found to naturally firm the skin, enhance elasticity, and reduce fine lines and wrinkles.

Hydroquinone - Repeated exposure to UV radiation from the sun causes premature skin aging. This photo-aging is characterized by wrinkles, mottled pigmentation, dry and rough skin and loss of skin tone. Treatment with topical Hydroquinone, a potent tyrosinase inhibitor, helps to “turn off” melanocyte cell activity.

Chromabright – Is a relatively new patented active molecule for skin brightening without the cytotoxicity of hydroquinone. Photo protective Chromabright is proven to have higher melanogenesis inhibition than Arbutin, MAP, and Kojic Acid and the same depigmenting effect as hydroquinone.

PhytoCellTec™ Symphytum - (Comfrey Stem Cells) commonly known as Gotu Kola, is derived from the roots and leaves of the plant scientifically known as Hydrocotyle Centella asiatica provides for recharging the youthfulness of the skin.

It may be impossible to stop the aging process, but with the knowledge of effective ingredients and products, it is now possible to look as young on the outside as you feel on the inside.

Collagen rejuvenating treatments are based on the principle that the skin has a natural abilitiy to repair itself whenever it is subjected to any kind of physical damage.  Immediately after an injury such as a cut, burn or an abrasion our body goes into a healing response and part of that response mechanism is to produce new collagen and elastin fibers.

Collagen is the main protein found in our bones, muscles and tendons.  It makes up 75 percent of our skin forming the scaffold that strenthens our connective tissue. There are several different types of collagen but two types in particular, Type I and Type III Collagen, are responsible for the majority of our skin’s regeneration.  When the skin is injured Type III Collagen begins the healing process and is followed in the later stages of wound repair by Type I Collagen, which is stronger and more resilient.

As children, our skin is rich with Type III Collagen. This is why a child's skin is soft and supple, enabling it to repair very quickly when injured. As we enter adulthood production of Type III Collagen slows and the production of Type I Collagen begins to increase. Type I Collagen continues to build until we reach the age of around thirty-five and then starts to decrease.

This is when true aging begins. Existing collagen degrades and the formation of new collagen decreases.  Due to this reduction in collagen our skin becomes thinner and less elastic, pore size increases, facial spider veins and sun damage become more apparent, fine lines begin to appear, wrinkles become deeper and our skin loses its natural youthful radiance. These issues then become steadily worse as time progresses.

Collagen production can, however, be stimulated with what we call a controlled injury.  When the face is cut, for example, Type I and Type III Collagen are released to repair the wound. This is the body’s normal wound-healing response.  It is this normal wound-healing response that treatments such as Micro-Needling, RadioFrequency, IPL and Clinical Peels are based on to naturally increase the production of collagen in the skin.

With the presence of new collagen the skin’s condition begins to improve.  It becomes plumper and suppler, wrinkles and scars diminish,  skin tightens,  uneven skin texture is smoothed, pore size appears smaller, and blemishes fade. With each treatment more new collagen is produced and the overall quality of the skin continues to improve.  

What are the after effects?

Topicals for home skin care maintenance are recommended to extend results and of course to continue to protect the collagen you have.

Vital A Serum contains L-Retinol that helps to promote collagen production and slow down the loss of elastin in skin tissue. The exfoliation effect of Vital A Serum also removes the dead skin cell layers and improves acne as well.

Vital C Serum (ascorbic acid) is essential for the synthesis of collagen.  In fact collagen cannot be built without vitamin C and its antioxidant properties make it a vital ingredient for skin health.  Studies have shown that maximal absorption in the skin is achieved with a 20% vitamin C solution. Although not a suncscreen Vitamin C is also recommended for it's antioxidant activity that limits the damage caused by UV exposure.

Sunscreen.
Under normal conditions ideal hydration of the skin is maintained when the surface of the skin contains 20% water and the lower layers of the epidermis contain 70%. This ensures lubrication and protection of the natural moisture barrier of the skin. We call this the Natural Moisturizing Factor (NMF).

The NMF is composed of water-soluble substances that attract water to the skin and help to retain water as well, keeping the hydration of the skin balanced. When this normal moisture balance of the skin is disrupted, particularly during seasonal changes, the quantity of the NMF diminishes leading to dehydrated skin cells and an uncomfortable complexion.

In the winter when the humidity is the air is low, water evaporates through the skin leading to dehydration. Dehydrated skin cells not only accelerate aging but also increase the sensitivity of the skin as well.  Just as you would layer your body with clothing to protect it when you go outside in cold weather, it's important to "dress" your skin as well. Think of your moisturizer like an overcoat that protects the skin from being exposed to the dehydrating elements.

Moisturizing ingredients such as Tea Extracts contain potent anti-oxidants in high concentrations for the ultimate in skin protection;  Sunflower, Olive Squalene and Soy Bean Oil are very effective added ingredients for slowing the evaporation of water contained in the skin and helping to lubricate and protect the moisture barrier of the skin; Spin Trap proteins help to prevent the natural oxidation that can occur and also help to prevent the water loss that is a side effect of natural aging.

Oily skin can also lack hydration in the winter months leading to an overproduction of sebum. Keeping the sebum and the hydration just right can be a balancing act but failing to do so can actually create an overproduction of sebum. Look for a light weight, deep cell hydrating cream that will help to maintain the moisture balance in the tissues and signal the brain to stop sending too much sebum to the surface of the skin. Ingredients such as Tea Tree Oil are antibacterial and Glycosaminoglycan's (water-binding polysaccharides) support collagen production; Sodium Hyaluronate will help to bind water to the skin’s cells. For people with excessively oily skin conditions look for Pythic Acid (a natural plant antioxidant from bran), grapefruit peel oil and Ascorbic Acid that all work together help acneic skin conditions while  healing and moisturizing.

Changing seasons are a great time to visit your esthetician and have your skin analyzed and your moisturizing routine reviewed and adjusted for best results for your skin type.
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