Antioxidants: What are They and Why They are Vital for Skin Health
There is no shortage of research on the highly beneficial role antioxidants play in keeping us looking and feeling younger. We can profoundly affect and elevate our skin and bodies’ quality and appearance by including these powerful nutrients in our diet and skincare.
Most of us have heard about antioxidant skincare, but how many of us know what antioxidants actually are and what they do to protect, nourish and heal our skin? Let’s explore these miracle molecules in-depth and get an understanding of how they provide our skin with the vital nutrients that help us feel and look our best.
What Are Antioxidants?
Simply put—antioxidants are nutrients (or molecules) that help protect our bodies from oxidative stress which is caused by free radicals and environmental factors such as UV light, chemicals, and pollution. Oxidative stress is the imbalance of antioxidants and free radicals, and this leads to the damage of our genetic material, skin cells, and proteins.
What does this mean for our skin? Oxidative stress is a major cause of premature aging; it manifests itself in fine lines, wrinkles, hyperpigmentation, and leaves us with dull and tired-looking skin.
How Antioxidants Work
Antioxidants neutralize and limit free radical production and reduce the damaging effects of oxidation. These mighty molecules are our bodies’ natural defenders that help us keep the signs of aging at bay.
Antioxidants for skin help reverse and transform aging skin by adding hydration, reducing fine lines and wrinkles, and alleviating inflammation, and the effects of rosacea. Antioxidants revive skin tone and texture, brighten dull and tired-looking skin, and rejuvenate your complexion.
The anti-aging and healing power of antioxidants is nothing short of miraculous and is the very reason so many skincare formulas are loaded with these powerful healing agents. Fortunately for us, we can add antioxidants back into our diets and use antioxidant skincare to help our bodies fight oxidative stress and reverse the damage free radicals cause.
The Benefits of Antioxidant Skincare
- Oxidation breaks down collagen; reduced collagen means fine lines, wrinkles, and sagging. Antioxidants stop the oxidation process and add more collagen resulting in more youthful-looking skin.
- The stress of oxidation triggers skin inflammation leading to breakouts and acne. Antioxidants are anti-inflammatory and create an environment that discourages acne.
- Antioxidants naturally help protect your skin from sun damage.
Free radical damage and sun exposure lead to the production of melanin, antioxidants fight the damage and decrease melanin production evening out skin tone and dark spots.
Gold Star Antioxidants for Skin
There’s good news—many skincare products out there contain powerful and effective antioxidants. Some are more helpful than others; let’s look at some of the best antioxidants used in skincare treatments:
- Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide) helps build a strong and resilient skin barrier and helps skin retain moisture. Helpful in treating skin conditions like acne and rosacea. It fights oxidative stress and improves skin texture and tone.
- Naturally occurring in red wine, grapes, and other berries, resveratrol is a powerful anti-aging antioxidant. It is proven to contain cancer-fighting properties and has antibacterial properties.
- Lycopene is a carotenoid found in most red vegetables. It promotes natural collagen production.
- Green Tea (Extract) is rich in plant polyphenols that improve immunity and has a calming and soothing effect on the skin. Subdues redness and irritation and reduces flushing from the sun.
- Vitamin C is popular for its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-aging properties. It also helps boost the skin’s defenses against UV damage, firms sagging skin, reduces acne scarring, and brightens skin for a more even complexion.
Astaxanthin, a rising star in the line-up of powerhouse antioxidants, is also a carotenoid. It protects the skin from UV damage and repairs overexposure to UV light. It also deeply moisturizes, minimizes wrinkles, and protects against hyperpigmentation.
Adding the Best Antioxidants for Strategic Results
Now that we know what antioxidants are and how they work to keep us and our skin healthy and youthful, we can use this information to choose quality skincare treatments tailored to our skin’s specific needs. Begin your exploration of antioxidant skincare products.