Antioxidants - Powerful Protection

As we have all experienced over the past couple weeks, the air quality in Sonoma County has been harmful in many ways. It has been difficult for a lot of us to feel comfortable going outside even to simply go about our typical daily activities knowing that the smoke and ash particles in the air are affecting our lungs. We know for a fact that we need to protect ourselves by wearing a mask to filter out those particles, but something we may not think about is how much the smoke may be affecting other parts of us, like our skin. There are things we can do preventatively as well as after the fact to try and reduce such harms.

The skin is our largest organ which is used as a protective barrier for the rest of our body, but it is also used to absorb anything that is put directly on its surface as well as whatever might be in the environment, like smoke. When the body absorbs a substance it doesn’t agree with, it affects our cells and produces what we refer to as free radical damage which causes premature aging – something we’re all trying to avoid. Unfortunately, free radicals can come from internal factors like the foods we eat as well as external factors like wood smoke, tobacco smoke and radiation from the sun.

It seems like everything around us can cause free radical damage, but luckily there are skincare products we can use to prevent such damage as well as help ease any damage there may already be. When picking skincare products its always important to look at the ingredients to make sure what you’re putting on your skin will help benefit whatever goal you are trying to reach. Here are some antioxidants found in skincare products that can do wonders!

Vitamin E – Helps the skin look younger by boosting collagen production which reduces the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and age spots.

Lycopene – Easily absorbed by the skin and reduces the DNA damage that leads to wrinkles.

Green Tea – There are antioxidant ingredients in Green Tea called catechins which help clear cell damage on the skin and repair wrinkles, blemishes and other impurities. Green Tea can also reduce inflammation caused by sun damage.

Grape Seed – This ingredient is amazing at hunting down and tackling free radicals. It has shown to be an even stronger scavenger than Vitamin C and E. Grape Seed also has amazing anti-aging properties.

Genistein – Has shown to effectively protect the skin against UVB-induced sun damage.

 Niacinamide – Can improve the texture and tone of the skin, reduce fine lines, wrinkles and hyperpigmentation.

The list goes on and on. Preventing free radical damage is something we should all try to incorporate into our everyday skincare routine especially with the smoke still clearing up. It’s also a good idea to boost your antioxidants during the holidays when we’re overindulging on food and during the summertime with the increased sun exposure.

Karli Allen