In our previous blog, we explored how and why collagen is such an essential compound for the efficient functioning of our body, and in particular in our skin. Along with its partner elastin, collagen helps reduce wrinkles, keeps the skin from sagging, and increases blood circulation to the skin. It gives the skin elasticity and firmness.
Autumn and the colder season are perfect opportunities to slow down and give yourself some TLC. We have all heard a lot about the benefit of taking time out to manage stress in recent times. Keeping your skin in top shape with an at-home facial massage is a great starting point that will go a long way in helping you keep a youthful and healthy glow. Taking care of your skin is also self-care.
How does self-care help boost collagen?
It has to do with the powerful but damaging connection between stress, inflammation and free radicals. As we move through life, collagen naturally breaks down; in addition to biological age, our metabolism starts producing an abundance of free radicals (collagen arch-enemy).
Free radicals are formed naturally in the body due to metabolism (oxidation). They can also be formed through external factors like smoking, stress and pollutants, which further diminish the body’s ability to produce its intrinsic collagen.
That’s where antioxidants come in.
Free radicals are strongly attracted to proteins, collagen and elastin, attacking them without restrain and causing oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is a real problem because once collagen and elastin cells are damaged, nearby cells become vulnerable, and here you have the chain reaction that leads to fine lines, wrinkles and dark spots.
Preventing collagen loss with natural antioxidants
While the collagen breakdown may seem inevitable, there are things we can do to slow down the breakdown process:
- Consuming a rainbow of fruits and veggies can provide antioxidants that fight free radical activity from within.
- Focusing on foods particularly rich in vitamin C and amino acids will double the benefits to your skin by increasing collagen and hyaluronic acid levels. Foods rich in vitamin C include oranges, red peppers, kale, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and strawberries.
- Skin needling, a popular go-to solution, stimulates collagen growth by prodding the skin’s dermis layer.
- Bringing essential oils and other natural plant compounds into your environment. They can boost collagen production and restore elasticity by going deep beneath the skin’s surface, encouraging the production of new skin cells.
Our favourite collagen-boosting natural essential and plant oils:
Since collagen fibres are damaged by inflammation, the first step in your self-care routine would be to incorporate some of the essential oils studied for their abilities to reduce inflammation or support detoxification to your environment. Here we have among others:
Many essential oils have also been recognized as natural antioxidants. By reducing the adverse action of free radicals, these oils help boost collagen production. Consider including some of these oils in your self-care practice:
- Star anise
What about collagen-boosting plant oils and extracts in skincare?
Skin cells are like bricks held together by a mortar made from lipids, and plant oils are fantastic at replacing and repairing the lipid layer to make it stronger and more supple. Here are our all-time favourites:
- Aloe vera
- Vit E
- Vanilla extract
- Rosehip oil
- Evening primrose oil
- Jojoba oil
- Wheat germ oil
- Para cress extract
When practising self-care at home, try using skincare products that blend synergistically essential oils with botanical extracts to powerfully boost collagen production within your skin.
Knowing these ingredients will eventually make their way into your bodies, you also want to use products that are free from pesticides and any chemicals.
In our Phyt’s retail range, such synergy of collagen-boosting natural compounds (often certified organic) is found in higher concentrations in the Aromalliance range formulated for mature skin:
- Phytonagre treatment cream with vanilla extract, evening primrose oil, lavender oil, and natural Vit E.
- Anti-Ageing Night Cream (Riche Nuit) with lavender oil, geranium oil, rosemary oil, ylang-ylang oil, and natural Vit E.
- Eye & Lip Cream (Fluide Contour) with wheat germ oil, lavender oil, ylang-ylang oil, Lemongrass oil, and chamomile.
- Absolue treatment cream with wheat germ oil, Lavender oil, orange oil, rosemary oil, thyme oil, lemon oil, tarragon oil, ylang-ylang oil, sage oil, and natural Vit E.
- Nourishing and Smoothing Serum (Sérum Anti-Rides) with wheat germ oil, rosemary oil, lavender oil, thyme oil, and natural Vit E.
- Firming & Tensing Serum (Serum Multi-Vita) with lavender oil, wheat germ oil, carrot oil, lemon oil, and natural Vit E.
Phyt’s offers another powerful range formulated to fight the signs of ageing with ingredients that promote collagen growth: the Panacée range.
The range offers two powerful wrinkles treatment creams for the face:
- Panacée Facial Cream with edelweiss extract, rosemary oil, aloe vera leaf extract, brown seaweed extract, rye extract, and paracress extract.
- Panacée Eye Contour Cream with lavender water, rye extract, edelweiss extract, and paracress extract.
Phyt’s has a choice of facial products that can help the skin’s natural ageing process by delivering natural ingredients to the skin; ingredients that will help the skin repair and renew itself for a radiant, smoother look.