If you’ve spent any time reading about skin care and researching ingredients, you’ve probably come across the term ‘active’. An active is an ingredient in a product that addresses a specific skin concern such as pigmentation, blemishes or signs of ageing. Although beneficial for specific concerns, here are some high quality actives that will deliver results whatever your skin type…
Found in Medik8 Liquid Peptides
Peptides are chains of amino acids that can be of both synthetic and natural origin which have the same chemical structure as proteins but are shorter in length. They appear in all living cells and have the ability to communicate with other similar cells within the body to repair and heal them. Peptides are popular in topical products because of their ability to easily penetrate the surface of the skin, due to their small molecular size, and stimulate collagen production by tricking the proteins into thinking their numbers are dwindling.
Found in SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic
A potent antioxidant, Vitamin C, or Ascorbic Acid, is one of the most effective actives when it comes to targeting a loss of collagen and uneven pigmentation. When applied topically, Vitamin C can remain within the skin for up to three days, protecting it from damage and encouraging new collagen formation by stimulating the fibroblasts that produce it. It is also an essential ingredient when it comes to skin brightening and correcting pigmentation. It inhibits tyrosinase, the enzyme responsible for melanin production, to effectively correct any dark areas and prevent the future development of pigmentation.
Derived from Vitamin A and the leading anti-aging active, Retinol can be used to address a wide range of skin concerns. When applied to the skin, it’s broken down into Retinoic Acid, which directly impacts the cell structure to stimulate elastin and collagen production. This reduces the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines while also fading dark spots and evening out texture, thanks to its ability to go deeper into the skin.
Found in Jan Marini Bioglycolic Cream
Azelaic Acid is sourced from grains such as barley and wheat and possesses very mild resurfacing properties, plus it has the ability to keep the skin balanced and bacteria-free. This multitasking active can tackle three of the most troublesome skin concerns including hyperpigmentation, acne and rosacea. For acne, it helps to reduce keratin production to prevent blocked pores and helps keep breakouts under control with its antibacterial benefits. To tackle rosacea, it calms inflammation and is rich in antioxidants which strengthen and protect damaged or delicate skin. When it comes to uneven tone, it can inhibit melanin production to brighten dull areas and diminish dark spots.
Found in NeoStrata Foaming Glycolic Wash
This natural exfoliator is derived from sugar cane and works wonders on a variety of skin concerns. It has the smallest molecular structure of all AHAs, meaning it can go deeper into the skin and get into all of the nooks and crannies surrounding dead cells. Glycolic Acid works by dissolving and loosening the glue that is holding the cells onto the top layer of the skin which allows them to shed more easily, in turn, increasing cell turnover and stimulating collagen production to leave the surface smooth and plump.