• Anna Solana, science journalist

    Photoprotective pills

    14 Oct  Photoprotective pills

     

    Sources:

    Actas Dermo-Sifiliográficas

    Applying sunscreen is the most common way to protect the skin from the sun’s radiation, but not everyone uses the most suitable product and not everyone remembers to re-apply it after a few hours. For some time now, more convenient alternatives for avoiding UV damage have been investigated. Oral photoprotectors could be one solution.

     

    These products are sold as a method to protect the skin of the entire body evenly and uniformly, with no need to worry about sweat or contact with clothes or water, as happens with sunscreens. Oral sunscreens essentially contain antioxidants (carotenoids, polyphenols, flavonoids, etc.) and vitamins (C, E) that restore damage to DNA caused by UV rays. So far, however, they have not been shown to provide sufficient protection to be able to replace sun creams and, even less, to replace coverup clothing, sunhats and sunglasses. Read More

  • Josep Orellana, science journalist

    Seaweed to rejuvenate the skin

    20 Dec Seaweed to rejuvenate the skin

     

    Sources:

    Cosmetics Design

    Seaweed (alga) is a hit in the anti-ageing skin care market. Many cosmetics are using seaweed as their star ingredient, attributing it with beneficial properties for enhancing our appearance. Creams and lotions of all kinds are prepared from "seaweed extract". How genuine is its anti-ageing properties? Or is this a question of misleading advertising?

     

    Many companies, especially from France, Canada, the USA and Australia, sell harvested seaweed extract as an ingredient for personal care products. Their advertising usually emphasizes that the extract is a very useful anti-skin-ageing alternative. Algae are organisms that are simpler than land plants. There are thousands of species worldwide, some used since time immemorial for various purposes (in China they have been used since 5,000 years ago). Read More

  • Anna Solana, science journalist

    Vitamins for the skin

    Admittedly, all vitamins have an important role to play. Many are sold as essential supplements without which it would seem impossible to have a perfect complexion. But few studies support their effectiveness. What vitamins does the skin truly need? How effective are vitamin-based creams and food supplements?

     

    It seems that without them our skin would look horrible. Vitamin A for dry skin problems such as acne or psoriasis. Vitamin B3 to prevent sun allergies. Vitamin B6 to balance oily skin. Vitamin C to repair sun damage, delay skin ageing and help collagen production. Vitamin D, produced by sunlight, to better absorb calcium and phosphorus, strengthen bones and prevent cavities. Vitamin E to fight free radicals and stimulate microcirculation. Finally, vitamin K (lately fashionable in cosmetic products), to prevent varicose veins and spider veins and reduce bags under the eyes. Read More

  • Núria Estapé, science journalist

    Youthful skin with resveratrol

    Considered to be the molecule of eternal youth, resveratrol is an anti-oxidant with surprising effects: it delays ageing and prevents disease. Its reparative powers have attracted the attention of the cosmetics sector, which is including it in skin care products. However, the lack of objective data about how resveratrol works has raised many doubts. Does it really have potent skin rejuvenating properties or is it just a myth?

     

    Red wine, grapes, peanuts, walnuts, blackberries and blueberries are just some of the foods that contain resveratrol. Dozens of nutricosmetic supplements and anti-ageing creams and serums based on this ingredient are sold in pharmacies and the Internet. Resveratrol, identified in 1940, has anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It became especially popular from 2003, when Harvard University (USA) doctor David Sinclair published studies that reported that mice fed with resveratrol increased their life expectancy by 40%. If these results could be demonstrated for humans, we would live to about the age of 136 years! Read More

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