From moisturizers to toners, there are plenty of popular beauty products out there to help keep your skin looking beautiful. But out of all those choices, we have a favorite – phytoceramides. Never heard of them? Well buckle up.
These natural supplements are making waves in the beauty world, and for good reason. Coined as the new ‘anti-aging’ pills, phytoceramides target skin care from the inside out, ensuring you keep on looking your best, whatever your age. Plus, they’ve got the scientific research to prove it. So without further ado, here’s the lowdown on the beauty world’s newest star.
What are Phytoceramides?
Phytoceramides are the new kid on the beauty block. Having only recently been launched and cleared by the FDA, phytoceramides are a completely natural alternative to traditional ceramides, which tend to come from animal sources. Instead, phytoceramides are extracted from wheat, rice or sweet potato, making them entirely vegan.
So what exactly are ceramides? Well, you’ve likely come across them in skincare and hair products, even if you haven’t realized it. Known for their ability to lock in water, ceramides help keep skin looking healthier, younger and plumper, making them a popular ingredient in moisturizers and anti-aging creams. Phytoceramides offer all of these wonderful benefits, but in an entirely plant-based form. Plus, unlike creams and lotions, they can be taken orally and absorbed straight into the bloodstream, protecting your skin health from the inside out.
How Do Phytoceramides Work?
This clever natural supplement works on a number of levels to help protect skin health:
Replace Natural Lipids
As you age, your skin progressively loses natural lipids called ceramides. The result is visible aging that includes dry skin, age spots and wrinkles. Phytoceramides work by mimicking the lipids to plump out the skin and reduce the signs of aging.
Work Deep Into the Skin
Skin is made up of dermal layers. Many beauty products fail to target all four of these layers, but phytoceramides have a unique advantage. Once absorbed into the bloodstream, they are carried to the cells of the inner layer of the skin, before making their way to the outer layer. So unlike topical moisturizers, phytoceramides reach skin all over the body, not just where creams are applied.
Keep Skin Hydrated
A major cause of skin aging is dehydration. But phytoceramides help to offset this by locking in water within the skin. In fact, a laboratory cell study found that a wheat-derived extract was able to hydrate human skin and restore its youthful structure after the skin cells’ protective barrier function had been weakened.
Stimulate the Production of Collagen
Collagen is responsible for keeping the skin looking young, plump and wrinkle-free, but from the age of 20, we start losing it at a rate of 1.5 percent a year. Phytoceramides work by stimulating the body to synthesize collagen, helping to boost your skin’s natural elasticity.
Help Create a Protective Barrier Against Inflammation
Aging is not the only cause of dry skin. Other factors include sun damage, dry air, certain medications and conditions such as hypothyroidism. But whatever the cause, phytoceramides have been shown to help provide a barrier to the inflammation and infection that can cause dry skin.
What’s the Evidence?
Beauty is big business, which means that most skin products are presented as some sort of magic elixir. So to make sure you’re getting the truth, we’ve investigated the scientific research into all these claims (and it’s safe to say, the results are pretty impressive).
When it comes to battling dry skin, there’s no doubt that wheat-based phytoceramide makes a difference. One 2010 study on 51 women found that after three months, those who were taking oral phytoceramides enjoyed significantly improve skin hydration and reduced redness.
To confirm these results, another clinical trial evaluated the wheat-derived phytoceramide extract in its oil form. The researchers found that for women with dry skin, the phytoceramide increased skin hydration by more than 35 percent. These controlled clinical trials show that wheat-derived phytoceramides really can boost skin hydration, plumpness and suppleness.
What Should I Look Out For When Buying Phytoceramides?
Here’s what to look out for when choosing your supplements:
• Choose a supplement that contains at least 350mg phytoceramides
• Always choose a product that has been FDA approved
• Look out for supplements that are boosted with other essential skin care vitamins, like vitamin D, A, E and C.
• Look for the words ‘plant-derived’
• Take with plenty of water