Beautifully photoshopped models in magazines seem to have miraculously benefitted from anti-wrinkle products which do nothing for you once you take them home.
How do you avoid making the same mistake over again?
A little anatomy is in order here, so we understand the mechanics of skin aging.
Our skin is made of 3 major layers :
epidermis – the top layer made of dry, dead skin cells.
dermis – the live, middle layer which contains collagen and elastin fibres, hair roots,
blood vessels, water and other components.
basal layer – primarily fat cells that act as insulation and protection.
Aging happens in the dermis, the live layer. Collagen and elastin fibers break, become slack and naturally occuring cell renewal slows down, so wrinkles set in.
Our skin also contains a large amount of water that plumps up the cells and fills the spaces in between cells. Relatively small amount of water loss, or dehydration, can result in fine lines, which, if dehydration continues, become wrinkles.
Still in the dermis, we find melanocytes, cells that produce a pigment called melanin, a process otherwise known as tanning. Tanning is a self defense mechanism that protects the body from UVA and UVB damage, in itself an aging process.
To summarize: when we look for anti-wrinkle products there are several problems to deal with, therefore any antiwrinkle product worth its salt must address at least one or two, if not more of these problems.
Moisturizers and hydrators are the first line of anti-wrinkle defense. They ensure the water content of the skin is topped up so fine lines have no chance to set in.
Chemical exfoliants such as retinol and glycolic acid will, by their very sloughing action on the skin, cause to speed up the cell renewal process. Collagen and elastin fibers regenerate with anti-wrinkle effect.The skin appears smoother and brighter because layers of accumulated dead cells are removed.
Exfoliation will partially remove sun damage, such as age spots.
Sun screens are to be considered anti-wrinkle preventive products and must be used regularly.
For up to the minute anti-wrinkle products, look for ingredients such as vitamin C that lightens and regenerates, peptides and neuro-peptides that send signals to skin to activate anti-aging mechanisms that help the appearance of deep wrinkles and expression lines.
Now that you have a better overview of the issue of anti-wrinkle products, you can take a look at the jars on your shelf and make sure they are indeed good enough for you.
by Nadia Danay