JUN 09, 2017 11:49 AM PDT

Want Anti-Aging Results? Check the Active Ingredients

WRITTEN BY: Xuan Pham

In 2016, the American cosmetic industry's revenue was a whopping $62 billion. And these numbers are only projected to rise in the coming years.

Of all the health and beauty categories grouped under the cosmetic market, facial skincare represents the largest share at 27 percent, just in the US alone. We clearly care a great deal about how our skin looks, and we don't mind shelling out money for the latest and greatest skincare products. But how effective are the anti-aging lotions and potions on the market? Are we paying for real results, or is it just psychological?

Whether a skincare cream will deliver on its anti-aging promises depends on the ingredients it contains. Because skin is a complex organ that takes a beating from exposure to the elements, finding compounds that reverse aging is quite difficult. Thus, there are only a handful of active ingredients that have truly been scientifically tested to show improvement in skin. These include antioxidants like retinol (vitamin A), vitamin C, and niacinamide. In addition, ingredients that exfoliate the skin, such as hydroxy acids, can help slough off dead skin and stimulate growth of new skin, thereby promoting a more youthful appearance.

But buyers beware. Because non-prescription skincare isn't regulated, manufacturers can be more loose about their anti-aging claims without having much science to prove it. So next time you're considering an expensive jar of cream, make sure to research the ingredient list!
About the Author
  • I am a human geneticist, passionate about telling stories to make science more engaging and approachable. Find more of my writing at the Hopkins BioMedical Odyssey blog and at TheGeneTwist.com.
You May Also Like
NOV 04, 2018
Space & Astronomy
NOV 04, 2018
These Planets Have More Extreme Weather Than Earth
You might think that the weather can get nasty here on Earth, but it pales in comparison to the weather on other planets in the solar system. The weather c...
NOV 06, 2018
Plants & Animals
NOV 06, 2018
Why Bald Eagles Have Such Great Vision
The bald eagle is an incredible creature, not just for its beauty, but also because of its astonishing eyesight capabilities. Experts estimate that the bal...
NOV 20, 2018
Videos
NOV 20, 2018
A Major Grant Aims to Improve our Understanding of Age-related Cognitive Decline
The American Heart Association has teamed up with the Allen Initiative in Brain Health and Cognitive Impairment to award the Salk Institute $19.2 million....
NOV 23, 2018
Videos
NOV 23, 2018
Authorities Enlist DNA Experts to ID Camp Fire Victims
Paradise, California, a town of 26,682 residents, was destroyed by the Camp Fire earlier this month....
NOV 25, 2018
Earth & The Environment
NOV 25, 2018
What Would Happen if An Asteroid Slammed Into One of Earth's Oceans?
Have you ever wondered what would happen if an asteroid plopped right into one of Earth’s oceans? Curious researchers wanted to know too, and so they...
NOV 27, 2018
Videos
NOV 27, 2018
Here's how we should fix icy roads
As winter makes its presence known this year, it's time that we begin thinking of new ways to deal with the ice and snow that it brings not only to our...
Loading Comments...