What causes skin aging?
Exposure to oxygen, environmental pollution, sunlight, and smoking, along with illness, poor dietary habits, and emotional stress can promote free radical production. 1,2 These free radicals, in turn, cause skin damage and signs of aging including wrinkles, dullness, brown spots, redness and loss of elasticity. 1-8
What is a free radical?
A free radical is defined as an atom or molecule with an unpaired electron. 1,2 These unstable molecules are chemically reactive and can harm the skin’s DNA, RNA, proteins and lipids through oxidation. 1-5
What role do antioxidants play?
Naturally present in the body, antioxidants protect cells by neutralizing free radical damage.1-9 Oral and topical antioxidants provide additional support to encourage the skin’s natural defenses.1 Polyphenols are an important and abundant source of antioxidants in the human diet and can be found in herbs, fruits, vegetables, grains, teas, coffee and red wine.10-11 Along with being potent antioxidants, they have a wide variety of beneficial actions including being antiviral, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and anti-carcinogenic. 10-11
How is the efficacy of antioxidants measured?
Total ORACsc(Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity skin care) is the most comprehensive, scientifically advanced, broad-spectrum antioxidant rating system created to measure the antioxidant capacity of skin care products to combat the primary free radicals that damage skin and cause signs of aging. ORACsc values are expressed as µmole TE/g — micromole Trolox Equivalent per gram.
Based on a survey conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the average person in the United States only consumes about 1,200 to 1,640 umole TE/day of antioxidants through their diet.12 To meet the USDA daily recommendation, one would need to intake an additional 1,360 umole TE/day — at minimum — of oral antioxidants to bring about some of the beneficial effects associated with antioxidant consumption.12
The Dermatologists' Prescription For a New You!
Learn about the factors that contribute to aging and how you can prevent and reverse the physical signs caused by these factors both at home and in a dermatologist office.
1. Palmer DM, Silverman Kitchin J. Oxidative damage, skin aging, antioxidants and a novel antioxidant rating system. J Drugs Dermatol, 2010;9(1):11-15. 2.Pinnell S. Cutaneous photodamage, oxidative stress, and topical antioxidant protection. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2003;48(1):1-19. 3. Farris P.Idebenone, green tea, and Coffeeberry extract: new and innovative antioxidants. Dermatologic Therapy, 2007 Sep-Oct;20(5):322-9. 4. Sohal RS, Weindruch R. Oxidative stress, caloric restriction and aging. Science 1996: 273: 59-63. 5. Camougrand N, Rigoulet M. Aging and oxidative stress: studies of some genes involved both in aging and in response to oxidative stress. Respir Physiol 2001: 128: 393-401. 6. Meyer M, Pahl HL, Baeuerle PA. Regulation of the transcription factors NF-kappa B and AP-1 by redox changes. Chem Biol Interact 1994: 91: 91-100. 7. Fisher GJ, Voorhees JJ. Molecular mechanisms of photoaging and its prevention by retinoic acid: ultraviolet irradiation indices MAP kinase signal transduction cascades that induce AP-1 regulated matrix metalloproteinases that degrade human skin in vitro. J Invest Dermatol Symp Proc 1998: 3: 61-68. 8. Senftleben U, Karin M. The IKK/NF-Kappa B pathway. Crit Care Med 2002: 30: S18-S26. 9. Shindo Y, Witt E, Han D, et al. Enymic and non-enzymic antioxidants in epidermis and dermis of human skin. J Invest Dermatol 1994: 102: 122-124. 10. Svobodova A, Psotova J, Walterova D. Natural phenolics in the prevention of UV-induced skin damage. A review.Biomed Papers 2003;147(2):137-145. 11. Prior R, Cao G. Analysis of botanicals and dietary supplements for antioxidant capacity: a review. J AOAC International 2000; 83(4):950-956. 12. Prior RL, Cao G. Analysis of botanicals and dietary supplements for antioxidant capacity: a review. Journal of AOAC International. 2000;Jul-Aug:83(4):950-6. 13. Lupo MP, Draelos D, Farris P, et al. Coffeeberry: a new , natural antioxidant in professional and antiaging skin care. Cosmetic Dermatology 2007;20:10(Suppl. 4);2S-9S. 14. Carletto C, Nicolay J, Courbebaisse Y. Oxidative stress and cutaneous ageing: the toxic. Int J Cosmet Sci 2000 Oct;22(5):361-70.
Apply an antioxidant under a moisturizer before bed every night to repair damage from the day. (Don't forget your neck, chest, shoulders, and the backs of your hands all of which are exposed to the sun on a daily basis.) If you're using Retin-A, you should apply the antioxidant first, then the Retin-A and lastly, a moisturizer. And, since many sunscreens don't have antioxidants in them, you should always apply an antioxidant under sunscreen before you go out in the sun.
If you have drier skin, it is important to remember to layer a moisturizer over your Replere rejuvenating products for extra moisture needs.