Collagen and Elastin: The Building Blocks to Youthful Appearance

When speaking in terms of anti-aging, many of you will repeatedly hear the terms “collagen” and “elastin”.  Many innovative skincare products are formulated to help support the growth and maintenance of these proteins. What exactly are collagen and elastin though? As a basic explanation, they are proteins that help provide the structure of our skin. Without the presence of collagen and elastin, our skin would have no support structure in place and appear as if it is “falling off”. Collagen and elastin may seem as if they are the same thing, but each protein plays an important, but different role in skin structure. Collagen is a group of fibers that supports the overall strength of the skin. The durability of the skin to protect the rest of the body through various environmental disruptions depends on collagen. So to simplify this, if our skin was a building, the collagen would be the strong concrete support that holds everything in place. Elastin on the other hand plays an important role in giving our skin the flexibility to stretch and spring back. Think of this as the “rubber band” structure within the skin. Collagen and elastin will overtime, start to deteriorate for many reasons. Such as a machine with strong, flexible gears, the skin has the ability to be strong and flexible as well. Overtime though, like a machine that is old and does not function as it once did, the skin starts to experience this as well. Many factors can contribute to the deterioration of collagen and elastin. Besides the natural aging process, sun exposure is one of the main reasons that collagen and elastin will break down unnaturally. Therefore the introduction of ingredients such as growth factors, antioxidants, and hyaluronic acid into a skincare routine will help repair and maintain optimal levels of collagen and elastin.

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