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What the heck do antioxidants do for me, anyway?

Questions: "What the heck do antioxidants do for me, anyway?"

Answer: As a class of ingredients in skin care, antioxidants are critical to having healthier, smoother, younger-looking skin, and the more antioxidants your skin-care products contain, the better.

We're tempted, and fueled by media hype, to look for "superstar" antioxidants, or formulas that focus on single antioxidants. There is not a single best antioxidant. Rather, there are dozens of brilliant antioxidants that work in different ways to improve multiple signs of aging and help your skin repair damage. Using products that contain only one or two antioxidants (like vitamin C) shortchanges your skin.

Think of it this way, the idea of eating nothing but oranges simply because of the benefits of vitamin C is a silly thought. Similarly, your skin is too complex to have its needs met by high levels of single ingredients.

So, let's look at what antioxidants do for you! We've compiled the three primary ways antioxidants are most helpful for all skin types:

ONE: Antioxidants Boost Your Skin's Ability to Fight Sun Damage.
Research has shown that applying antioxidants boosts skin's ability to reduce the premature aging caused by unprotected sun exposure. When paired with a broad-spectrum SPF, antioxidants offer further environmental defense and help reduce collagen breakdown whenever your skin sees daylight. If that isn't an amazing reason to pair your daytime moisturizer with SPF and an antioxidant-packed serum, we don't know what is!

TWO: Antioxidants Inhibit Skin Damaging Free-Radicals.
Free radicals are produced when skin is exposed to smoke, pollution, car exhaust, sun, or the very air we breathe. This ever-present, continuous assault leads to wrinkles and sagging, and blocks skin's ability to heal.

Antioxidants work to reduce the extent of free-radical damage, protecting vital substances in the skin from deteriorating due to the chronic inflammation free-radical damage causes.

THREE: Antioxidants Protect Against Inflammation.
Almost every antioxidant also functions as an anti-inflammatory agent, on skin and in the body. Inflammation is considered the "silent skin ager" because, much like daily sun damage, we often don't see or feel it happening (not unlike how we wouldn't feel or see damage that occurs throughout the body when smoking a cigarette.)

Antioxidants step in and reduce the inflammation before it becomes chronic and causes further harm, such as signs of aging you'd rather not see, including loss of firmness, uneven skin tone, wrinkles, and increased redness and sensitivity.

The Bottom Line:
Antioxidants can save your skin in significant ways, and they start performing their magic from the first time you apply them. For best results, make sure your toner, daytime moisturizer, serum, and nighttime moisturizer contain a range of antioxidants.

One more thing! For all the benefits antioxidants provide, they are delicate ingredients that break down with repeated exposure to light and air. For this reason, never buy a skin-care product with antioxidants that's packaged in a jar. Each time it's opened, the potency of the antioxidants is further reduced, so you won't be getting the most from these superstar ingredients!

 

Article is from Paula’s Choice, Inc. 

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