Skin performs many important physiological functions and is extremely susceptible to free-radical damage. To function optimally and stay healthy, your skin needs nourishing with antioxidants from the inside and outside. For our overall health, we need supplements in addition to a healthy diet. But for the health of our skin, internal nourishment is not enough: topical antioxidants are essential.
Look in the mirror. What do you see? You are looking at your body’s largest organ–your skin. It performs many important physiological functions and is extremely susceptible to free-radical damage. To function optimally and stay healthy, your skin needs nourishing with antioxidants from the inside and outside.
Our bodies are under continuous attack by free radicals, those extremely reactive molecules produced by our environment and our bodies that damage cells and tissues. On the outside, free-radical damage causes wrinkles, loss of skin tone, hyperpigmentation, aging, and skin cancer. On the inside, free-radical damage is suspected in various diseases including cancers, degenerative diseases, inflammatory illnesses, and in the aging process itself.
Antioxidants for Skin Health
We have a natural defense mechanism against free-radical attack. Our bodies contain complex systems of antioxidant vitamins, minerals, or nutrients that inactivate free radicals before they can damage cells. Hundreds of antioxidants exist. Some, such as alpha-lipoic acid, are produced by our bodies. Others are found in plants and must be consumed. Each antioxidant functions slightly differently, but they work together synergistically to keep the body and skin healthy.
The skin is constantly exposed to free radicals produced by harmful pollutants in the environment and, most significantly, UV light. To maintain healthy, youthful skin we must ensure that our skin has enough antioxidants to adequately protect itself. We can deliver these antioxidants to our skin through diet, supplements, and topical products.
For our overall health, we need supplements in addition to a healthy diet. But for the health of our skin, internal nourishment is not enough: topical antioxidants are essential. Internal supplementation improves antioxidant levels in skin cells, but research shows that topical application delivers these important nutrients to the skin more quickly. Countless studies demonstrate that topical antioxidants protect skin from UV damage, reduce inflammation, and may protect against certain types of cancer.
These formulations contain many different antioxidants. Choose a combination that is appropriate for your skin. Some are stronger than others and many offer additional health benefits. Vitamins C and E, two well-known antioxidants, are essential for skin health. Additionally, vitamin C stimulates collagen synthesis, and vitamin E provides excellent hydration benefits. Astaxanthin, a carotenoid, is 500 times more powerful than vitamin E and is anti-inflammatory. The standardized extract from the bark of the French maritime pine, containing a complex of powerful antioxidants, helps improve microcirculation and also enhances the function of vitamin C.
These and other topical antioxidants will protect your skin and optimize skin health. Look for effective concentrations of these important antioxidants and avoid potentially harmful ingredients such as mineral oil, petrolatum, and parabens.
- vitamin C
- vitamin E
- beta carotene/vitamin A
- French maritime pine bark (Pinus maritime)
- green tea
- alpha-lipoic acid