Aging is the natural but a painful phase in human life characterized by the loss of beauty and vigor. So, mankind has been constantly in search of miraculous products that can stop this aging process, and restore the beauty and vitality of youth. Anti-aging creams can be termed as the result of this unending quest.
They are specifically designed to counteract the effects of aging on our skin. Anti-aging products have simply flooded the entire market of cosmetics and skin care products. But can they really erase the signs of aging? Let's find out more about anti-wrinkle skin care products and how effective they are in eliminating the signs of aging.
Causes of Wrinkles and Fine Lines
Fine lines and wrinkles are the result of the natural process of aging. Though they cannot be avoided, it is possible to delay their appearance by taking adequate skin care. With growing age, our skin loses its natural moisture and elasticity. Collagen is an important constituent of our skin, and it plays a vital role in maintaining skin elasticity.
But as we grow older, the production of collagen slows down, and as a result, the skin starts to lose its elasticity. Generally, the dead skin cells are continuously replaced by new cells, and that is how our skin rejuvenates itself. But the production of new skin cells reduces significantly with advancing age. Moreover, our skin loses its firmness due to the loss of underlying fats. Along with these internal factors, several external factors, like the excessive exposure to sunlight and free radicals can also damage the skin, and accelerate the development of wrinkles and fine lines.
How Do Anti-aging Face Creams Work?
These creams basically contain some active ingredients that can replenish the skin, and restore its lost moisture and elasticity. Many of these products contain vitamin A or retinol that can protect the skin from the damaging effects of the free radicals. Free radicals are high energy particles that can oxidize and damage the cells and tissues of the body. This in turn, can speed up the aging process leading to the appearance of premature wrinkles and fine lines. But retinol or vitamin A is a powerful antioxidant that can inhibit the oxidation of the skin cells by the free radicals.
Like vitamin A, vitamin C and vitamin E are also antioxidants, and many anti-aging skin care products contain these two vitamins. Apart from protecting the cells from the free radicals, these vitamins can reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and make the skin soft, smooth, and supple. Vitamin C can repair damaged skin by promoting collagen production. It can also protect the skin from the damaging ultraviolet radiation of the sun. Vitamin E can also make the skin smoother and softer by neutralizing the harmful free radicals.
Hydroxy acids are also an important ingredient of many skin care products, including the anti-wrinkle cosmetics. These are mainly obtained from fruits and dairy products. Skin care products usually contain three types of hydroxy acids - alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs), beta hydroxy acids (BHAs), and polyhydroxy acids (PHAs). Hydroxy acids are known to exfoliate or peel off the dead skin cells, and stimulate the generation of new cells. They can also promote the production of collagen, and maintain skin elasticity. They can be quite effective in treating skin pigmentation as well.
Some other important ingredients found in anti-wrinkle face creams are, copper peptides, kinetin, tea extract, and alpha-lipoic acid (ALA). Copper peptides promote collagen formation, while kinetin can reduce wrinkles and skin pigmentation. Tea extract has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, while alpha-lipoic acid can improve skin tone and firmness by exfoliating the dead skin cells. It is also a strong natural antioxidant.
The efficacy of the various anti-aging products depends on their ingredients. However, it should be kept in mind that no product can reverse the process of aging; they can at the most delay the process. Therefore, the best creams are those that can help reduce the appearance of wrinkles without producing any serious side effects like skin irritation and rash. However, it is important to choose the right product suitable for your skin type for proper wrinkle-free skin care. Equally important is to drink plenty of water, and follow a healthy and nutritious diet that includes lots of fruits and green vegetables.