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Collagen and Elastin Damage Cause Skin Aging

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Author: Dr. Valerie Rosenbaum

Here you can learn about the aging of skin and collagen and elastin damage that occurs over time. If you want to look your best throughout your life, these are lessons that are worth your while.

Many of the things that you have probably heard about the skin's health and appearance were misleading. For example, most sources say that collagens are a primary component of the skin, but they are not a primary component of the epidermis, which is the part that we see. It is a primary component of the dermis, which lies between the epidermis and the subcutaneous tissue.

There are four or five layers of the epidermis, depending on which area of the body you are looking at. Making up those five layers are four different kinds of cells, but 95% of the cells are made of keratin, a different kind of protein that many people have never heard of.

The dermis is composed of two layers, elastin-fibers are only found in the deepest layer, alongside densely packed collagen-fibers. Loosely packed fibers of collagens are found in the other.

Collagens and elastins are sometimes found in anti-aging skincare products. But, if they were to prevent aging of skin and collagen and elastin loss, they would need to penetrate through the four of five layers of the epidermis, in order to get to the dermis. Elastins would need to penetrate through five or six layers. The whole idea is structurally impossible.

The long chained proteins are too large to penetrate through all of those layers, which is why cosmetic surgeons came up with the idea of injecting it. If they could be applied topically and provide benefit, then injections would be unnecessary.

The relationship between the appearance aging of skin and collagen and elastin damage is pretty well understood. When the fibers are damaged, they become less strong. The skin becomes less elastic and loses its ability to tighten back up after a weight loss.

The thickness of the subcutaneous tissue becomes thinner with age, having the same affect that a large weight loss would have. Add these together and you see more sagging. Wrinkles and fine lines may start to appear.

Most of the damage to the fibers is caused by free radicals, although chronic inflammation and stress can also do some damage. The body's defenses against free radical damage are antioxidants, which can be applied topically. There are natural anti-inflammatories that can also be applied to the epidermis. Stress reduction is a different subject.

To address the aging of skin and collagen and elastin loss with antioxidants and natural anti-inflammatories, you need to find a company that uses nanotechnology. Antioxidants like coenzyme Q10 and vitamin E will not penetrate through all six or seven layers without using the technology.

With creams containing amino acids, it is possible to stimulate the production of new cells, which increases thickness and reduces wrinkles. They also act as anti-inflammatories to fight the aging of skin and collagen and elastin damage. Those are the basics, but there's always more to learn.

Dr. Valerie Rosenbaum is a dermatologist who has spent the last several years researching natural skin care products in an effort to find the best skin care products available for her patients. For more information visit


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