How Does Anti-Aging Cream Work?

How does anti-aging cream work? Anti-aging creams are skin care products that decrease wrinkles, increase collagen, and promote facial rejuvenation. You have seen the ads; the promotions and commercials...

You have seen the ads; the promotions and commercials claiming this miracle in a bottle will make your youthful dreams come true. From instant youthfulness, to wrinkles disappearing, anti-aging cream once targeted women, but has cast their powerful spell on men as well.

"It's actually been shown quite beautifully by electron microscopy that the retinoids change the composition of the epidermis," says Dr. Susan Weinkle is an assistant clinical professor of dermatology at the University of South Florida. She also serves on the board of directors of the American Academy of Dermatology. "It thickens the epidermis, thins the stratum corneum, which is the very top layer of skin, and then causes an increase in the elastic tissue fibers as well as an increase in collagen deposition. There is no doubt that you can see, not only clinically, subjectively that the skin can improve with retinoic acid or retinoids. I recommend that if you can only choose two things, put on a sunscreen on in the morning and a retinoid at night."

Many anti-wrinkle creams contain some form of retinal, which have been shown to rejuvenate the skin. The effects of these compounds likely depend on the concentration and how it is made. Clinical studies have demonstrated that the appearance of aged skin can be some what reversed by daily treatment with topical anti-aging agents.

According to the website Health, alpha-lipoic acid, an ingredient found in many anti-aging creams, function in four ways to help the slow skin aging process. It is a very potent antioxidant and it helps maintain the health of the mitochondria, which is the powerhouse of the cell. When this cell is compromised, it cannot perform youthful repair functions. Also, it helps turn off an inflammatory messenger known as nuclear factor kappa B that can do much damage to the skin. Alpha-lipoic acid activates a collagen-regulating factor known as AP-1 that turns on enzymes that digest damaged collagen.

Another ingredient found in anti-aging cream is glycolic acid, which is the most potent of the alpha-hydroxy acids. It has been shown to aid wrinkle removal in aging human skin. The purpose of this ingredient is to break down old cells at the skin's surface so they can be replaced with youthful cells from underneath the skin.

"There is also what is called facial rejuvenation," says Weinkle. "Facial rejuvenation uses semi-permanent fillers to fill out wrinkles. We have wonderful new products called hyaluronic acids. We also have lactic acid and radiesse, which is a calcium hydroxyapatite. Any of these products can be used to fill in facial wrinkles."

Aged skin occurs when the slowdown in production of youthful new cells fail to replace the accumulation of damaged aged cells. Vitamin A stimulates skin cell renewal by increasing the rate of mitotic cell division. When looking to purchase anti-aging creams, make sure it has four important ingredients, such as alpha-lipoic acid, glycolic acid, retinoic acid and Vitamin A. Whether these products work or not, it wouldn't hurt to try.

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