We’ve all seen this skincare buzzword thrown around these days, but do you really know what a free radical is? If your answer is no, you need to educate yourself on the damage these skin-agers are causing. That’s right. Free radicals are aging you and if you don’t know what they are, you won’t be able to fight them or premature skin aging.
What’s all the fuss about free radicals?
If you’ve ever watched a cut apple turn brown, you have seen the oxidation process first hand. This process is caused by free radical destruction. It occurs when free radicals damage parts of the cells such as proteins and cell membranes. This damage leads to wrinkles, lines, hyperpigmentation, dehydration and loss of youthful volume.
When oxidation occurs, the damaged cells lose their ability to function normally. Our resilient bodies try to compensate by activating the inflammatory process. Unfortunately, inflammation degrades collagen and elastin which also leads to premature wrinkles and sagging.
2. Where Do They Come From?
Free radicals are everywhere. They can be triggered by pollution, UV rays (both UVA and UVB), cigarettes, poor diet and even extreme weather conditions.
3. How Do You Stop Them?
The only way to combat free radicals is through antioxidants. These help protect the skin from the damage caused by free radicals by interrupting free-radical damage. Believe it or not, antioxidants actually sacrifice themselves to protect our cells and must be replenished continually.
The antioxidant most commonly used in skincare products is Vitamin C. However, not only is it very unstable and shouldn’t be exposed to sunlight, it can only “scavenge” one free radical before becoming spent or useless. This is precisely why Dr. Beckman chose to use an OPC, or oligomeric proanthocyanidins in his antioxidant serum, OPC Reparative Serum. OPCs actually recharge the Vitamin C allowing it to rid the body of these damaging free radicals. In fact, OPCs work so well, they are proven to be 20 times effective than Vitamin C and 50 times more powerful than Vitamin E as free radical scavengers.
Which one would you choose?