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Skin Aging 101

Skin Aging 101

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Many view skin health primarily in terms of combating age-related changes to their appearance. But, few pay attention to skin's complexity and importance as the body's largest organ and protective shield.

Covering an area of about two square meters, weighing approximately ten kilograms, and only a few millimeters thick, the skin acts as a vital barrier shielding our inner world from external threats (1).

In this article, we explore the anatomy of the skin to understand its organization and the functions it plays in our bodies. We also discuss how to support resilient skin in the daily battle for health and longevity.

The Anatomy of Skin Aging

The skin is a complex organ consisting of the epidermis and dermis, which sit on a fatty layer called the hypodermis. Both the epidermis and the dermis are composed of sublayers. The skin hosts a variety of structures, including nerve endings, vessels, hair follicles, and glands, all held together by an extracellular matrix that provides structural support (1).

Skin aging manifests differently at various stages of life, which is an example of why anti-aging practices need to be tailored to different age groups:

  • 25-35 years: Emergence of fine lines and expression lines become more noticeable.
  • 35-50 years: Deeper lines and wrinkles develop, along with the first signs of age spots.
  • 50-60 years: Wrinkles deepen and the skin thins noticeably.
  • Over 60 years: All signs of aging become more pronounced.

The Causes of Skin Aging

Why does skin age and change over time? Skin aging involves a combination of various processes influenced by internal factors like genetics and external factors such as UV exposure and pollution (2, 3). 

The primary contributors to skin damage and "signs of aging" include:

  • Oxidative Stress: Cellular byproducts like reactive oxygen species (ROS) can lead to oxidative stress if not adequately neutralized, damaging cells and organelles, particularly mitochondria, which affects collagen and elastin production (4).
  • Fibroblast Decline: Fibroblasts, responsible for producing collagen and elastin, decline in function with age, which diminishes skin regeneration and accelerates aging. Changes in fibroblast activity affect collagen synthesis and increase matrix metalloproteinase production, leading to connective tissue damage (5,6).
  • Senescent Cell Buildup: Senescent fibroblasts accumulate in the skin, releasing compounds that promote further senescence in nearby cells. This accumulation contributes significantly to the aging process and is particularly evident in sun-exposed skin (7,8).
  • DNA Damage: Accumulated DNA damage over time, particularly from UV exposure, accelerates skin aging by altering cellular functions and reducing the skin's ability to repair itself (9).
  • Collagen Reduction: Aging decreases collagen levels, which affects the skin's structural integrity and elasticity, leading to increased wrinkling and changes in skin texture (10). The decline in collagen connected to aging results from both less collagen being produced and collagen that does not work properly due to the accumulation of AGEs, or advanced glycation end products that can damage collagen and elastin.
  • Hyaluronic Acid Reduction: The loss of hyaluronic acid in the skin with age leads to decreased skin hydration and elasticity, contributing to visible aging signs like wrinkles (11).
  • Elastin Degradation: Elastin fibers degrade over time, particularly in sun-exposed areas, reducing skin elasticity and contributing to wrinkle formation (12).
  • NAD Decline: As we age, the levels of a molecule called NAD (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide) naturally decrease in our bodies. NAD is crucial for producing energy within our cells. When NAD levels drop, our cells don't produce as much energy. This reduction in cellular energy can lead to less effective cell functions, slower recovery from damage, and decreased skin rejuvenation, resulting in signs of aging like wrinkles and reduced skin elasticity.

Factors Accelerating Skin Aging: External and Internal Culprits

Both things happening inside the body (internal factors) and things happening outside the body (external factors) can take a toll on skin health. Here's more about both of these types of skin agers:

External Factors Affecting the Skin:

  • Sun Exposure: Chronic sun exposure accelerates skin aging, marked by increased wrinkles, pigmentation changes, and loss of elasticity. It causes oxidative stress, apoptosis, and direct DNA, membrane, and protein damage (19).
  • Pollution: Air pollution contributes to oxidative stress and pigmentation disorders, further exacerbating skin aging (19).

Internal Factors Affecting the Skin:

  • Poor Diet and Nutrition: The link between diet and skin health is evident, as poor nutrition can lead to skin issues, while a balanced diet rich in antioxidants can support skin health (20).
  • Smoking: Smoking accelerates collagen breakdown, reducing skin density and elasticity, contributing to premature aging and disrupted skin integrity (21).

Preventative Measures and Rejuvenating Strategies

To keep skin looking healthy and to prevent or even reverse certain age-related skin changes, a holistic approach to health is needed that goes beyond topical treatments. Integrating a regime that includes preventative measures and advanced rejuvenation strategies ensures a more effective defense against aging.

Preventative Measures:

  • Sun Protection: Regular use of sunscreen can prevent premature photoaging, reducing the risk of age spots and loss of skin elasticity.
  • Hydration: Proper hydration and the use of moisturizers help maintain skin's moisture barrier and protect against environmental damage.
  • Diet: A nutrient-rich diet supports skin health, enhancing collagen production and skin vitality.
  • Lifestyle Choices: Avoiding smoking and reducing alcohol intake are crucial for maintaining skin health.

Rejuvenating Strategies:

  • Advanced Skincare Products: Incorporating products that promote collagen and elastin production can help reverse the signs of aging.
  • Professional Treatments: Treatments like IPL laser, microneedling, and PRP therapy can improve skin texture and elasticity by stimulating the skin's natural healing processes.

Aging Gracefully with Cellular Skin Renewal

Acknowledging the limitations of topical creams in effectively combating age-related changes, it makes sense to strategically enhance your skincare regimen with potent anti-aging supplements.

Cellular Skin Renewal is formulated with spermidine, a naturally occurring polyamine crucial for cellular renewal and combating cellular senescence. Known for its anti-aging properties, spermidine helps preserve youthful-looking skin.

 The formula is also enriched with ceramides that fortify the skin's lipid barrier, improving hydration and resilience, alongside hyaluronic acid and its precursor n-acetyl glucosamine, which significantly boost skin moisture and elasticity.

Additionally, a robust blend of antioxidants including vitamins C and E, and astaxanthin, provides comprehensive protection against oxidative stress, a key contributor to skin aging. Verisol collagen peptides enhance the skin's structural integrity, improving elasticity and reducing visible signs of aging.

Niacinamide also plays a pivotal role by strengthening the skin's barrier, increasing elasticity, and minimizing susceptibility to aging factors. 

Each component of Cellular Skin Renewal not only functions individually but also works synergistically to amplify the overall anti-aging effects.

Learn how to protect your skin and maintain its health and longevity:

Understanding the skin's anatomy and the complex factors that contribute to aging can help you maintain its health and youthfulness. This "inside-out" philosophy recognizes the deep connection between internal health and external beauty. 

By integrating proper nutrition, hydration, and a balanced lifestyle with targeted skincare treatments like Cellular Skin Renewal, you can maintain skin vitality and age gracefully. This comprehensive approach ensures your skin receives the full spectrum of support needed to look its best.

References:

  1. Anatomy, Skin (Integument), Epidermis (2022).  Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK470464/
  2. Defining skin aging and its risk factors: a systematic review and meta-analysis (2021). Scientific Reports.
  3. Genetic basis for skin youthfulness (2019). Clinics in Dermatology.
  4. Focus on the Contribution of Oxidative Stress in Skin Aging (2022). Antioxidants (Basel).
  5. Age-Related Changes in the Fibroblastic Differon of the Dermis: Role in Skin Aging (2022). International Journal of Molecular Sciences.
  6. The effect of aging in primary human dermal fibroblasts (2019). PLoS ONE.
  7. The Senescence-Associated Secretory Phenotype: Critical Effector in Skin Cancer and Aging (2016). Journal of Investigative Dermatology.
  8. Age-dependent sequential increase of senescent cells in the skin (2022). Journal of Investigative Dermatology.
  9. Skin aging and photoaging: the role of DNA damage and repair (2000). American Journal of Contact Dermatitis
  10. Skin connective tissue and ageing (2013). Best Practice & Research in Clinical Obstetrics & Gynaecology.
  11. Anti-Aging and Depigmentation Effect of a Hyaluronic Acid Mechanically Stabilized Complex on Human Skin Explants (2023). Polymers.
  12. Connective Tissue and Fibroblast Senescence in Skin Aging (2021). Journal of Investigative Dermatology
  13. Effect on the mechanical properties of type I collagen of intra-molecular lysine-arginine derived advanced glycation end-product cross-linking (2018). Journal of Biomechanics.
  14. The evolving role of the NAD+/nicotinamide metabolome in skin homeostasis, cellular bioenergetics, and aging (2014). DNA Repair.
  15. Inflammaging and the Skin (2021). Journal of Investigative Dermatology.
  16. Senescent cells promote tissue NAD+ decline during ageing via the activation of CD38+ macrophages (2020). Nature Metabolism.
  17. Factors Influencing Skin Aging and the Important Role of Estrogens and Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulators (SERMs) (2022). Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology.
  18. Aging Differences in Ethnic Skin (2016). The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology.
  19. Effects of Air Pollution on Cellular Senescence and Skin Aging (2022). Cells.
  20. Nutrition and youthful skin (2021). Clinics in Dermatology.
  21. Cigarettes Smoking and Skin: A Comparison Study of the Biophysical Properties of Skin in Smokers and Non-Smokers (2019). Tanaffos.
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