You might have heard of the term ‘free radicals’ spoken about frequently in terms of skincare, but like so many people, you’re probably unsure what they actually are. These invisible particles are responsible for breaking down the collagen in our skin and ultimately creating the wrinkles and lines that age our appearance.
Span your mind back to chemistry class at school and you may remember being taught about atoms. Everything is made up of atoms that have tiny electrons orbiting them. Electrons come in pairs, but when these pairs are split up, the atoms with ‘lonely’ electrons are known as free radicals.
When atoms become free radicals, they’ll do everything they can to find a match for their unpartnered electron, which sometimes includes stealing electrons from healthy cells.
In simple terms, think of an apple. When you cut it open and expose the inner flesh to the atmosphere, it starts to turn brown. This is because the free radicals in oxygen are trying to find partner electrons, which causes a chemical reaction and for the apple flesh to turn brown.
This same reaction happens to our skin, and as collagen, the key protein in our skin is destroyed, our skin loses suppleness and may be more prone to blemishes, sagging and general signs of ageing.
How to stop free radicals damaging our skin?
Free radicals are all around us and the chemical reaction they have with our skin can be accelerated by pollution and other external triggers in the atmosphere. Unfortunately, the process is natural and unavoidable, but there is a magic ingredient that can slow down the process.
If you put lemon juice on your piece of apple, it’ll turn brown at a slower rate. This is because lemon juice contains antioxidants – vitamins and nutrients with an extra electron, which they can give to the free radicals, effectively calming and neutralizing them.
Common antioxidants include Vitamins C, A and E. These are present in dark, leafy vegetables and colourful fruits, like kale, avocado, sweet potato and green tea, which will help to protect our bodies from the inside.
But more importantly, antioxidants can be found in our skincare. Creams and serums with high levels of antioxidants create a protective barrier over the skin to help lessen the impact of free radicals and in turn minimise the effects of ageing and restore skin quality.
The Aesthetics Room stocks a wide selection of products that contain antioxidants, including PCA Skin Vitamin C, Vitamin B Serum, CBD Serums
The Aesthetics Room
The Aesthetics Room is a certified and reputable provider of skin, body, and hair treatments, with trained professionals administering treatments in its Harley Street and Knightsbridge branches. With in-person and virtual consultations available, speak to a member of the team for free today about the clinic’s extensive list of beauty and medical treatments.