Did you know that the average skincare product provides less than 5% penetration. It is important to use products that offer a high penetration rate with delivery systems. Your products should be formulated to help rebuild, repair, remodel and preserve the epidermal layers of the skin while building collagen and strengthening elasticity. A liposome delivery system, seen throughout the PriyanaMD skincare line is key to ingredient and product penetration, and results!
Liposomes are microscopic spheres that are so tiny making the absorption almost perfect. Products which are poorly absorbed or which have a normal molecular size inhibit efficient absorption providing very little nutrient value for our skin cells. Normal absorption is in the 3-5 percent range, liposomal absorption is 90 plus percent! Does your skincare products have this system in place? If not, then you should consider PriyanaMD.
Understanding the skin barrier is important achieving beautiful healthy skin. Supporting this important system is the first step in correcting any inflammatory skin condition: acne, rosacea, aging and a host of others. We routinely strip away the skin’s first line of defense, the acid mantle, and, too often, we do not pay enough attention to restoring it. Any time you see redness in the skin, it is a sign that the skin barrier has been compromised. The key to success in treating skin starts with a full assessment of the health of the skin barrier and the correct strategies to begin the repair process. Once the barrier is restored, wonderful and lasting results can be achieved. We will discuss the Barriers of the skin and new ingredients that work to increase barrier function.
Niacinamide or Vitamin B3, one of the powerhouse ingredients seen throughout the PriyanaMD, effectively increases the skin’s metabolism, allowing your cells to properly communicate with each other for repair, support barrier function, and to regulate desquamation. That’s right, when your skin’s metabolic rate is performing at its most optimum level via Niacinamide application – cells naturally exfoliate, UV damage and oxidative stress is repaired, and your skin’s first line of defense, your barrier, is intact and ready to defend your largest organ. Unfortunately, like all biological systems, our skin metabolism slows down as we age – this is the reason we begin to form fine lines and wrinkles, and we tend to pack on that weight a bit easier! Fret not though; Niacinamide is here to the rescue!! Niacinamide can be found thoughout our line and in one of our biggest selling products, HylaSilk HA Intensive Serum.
Niacinamide is the active form of Vitamin B3 (Niacin) and is by far one of the most important components of proper cellular function, acting as a precursor in over 300 chemical and enzymatic reactions in the skin and body. It has several medicinal applications including anti-inflammation, reversal of photo immunosuppression and an increase in cellular lipid synthesis. Topically, our Niacinamide will increase ceramide production for improved barrier function, repair photo aged skin, reduce TEWL (trans epidermal water loss), regulate unwanted pigmentation, decrease sebum production/oil, and return your cellular turnover rate to normal.
Systemically, it’s involvement in the energy cycle of your cells, will allow free fatty acids and glucose to be more efficiently used. A win on both ends!
The Skin’s Barrier Functions
The role of the stratum corneum (the skin’s outer layer) is to protect us against environmental hazards while preventing water loss from the skin. It contains an entire set of defenses. If one barrier function is compromised, others will also be affected. The barrier function that most estheticians are familar with is the permeability barrier, which prevents transepidermal water loss (TEWL), and, in the other direction, prevents allergens, irritants, microbes, and pathogens from entering the body through the skin. To understand how we can support this permeability barrier and repair it when it becomes damaged, we need to know a little about three lipids that are found in the stratum corneum.
THREE VITAL LIPIDS
Under a microscope, the stratum corneum looks similar to a brick wall. The corneocytes are the “bricks,” embedded in “mortar” that is made up of multiple sheets of lamellar membranes. These membranes are the permeability barrier, and they are made of a mixture of three different lipids: ceramides, cholesterol, and longchain free fatty acids. These three lipids account for up to 10 percent of the dry weight of the stratum corneum, and they work together to waterproof the skin.
The proportion of the lipids is vital for correct skin barrier function. All three must be present, and normal skin requires a ratio of 1:1:1 (in other words, each of the three is present in the same amount). If the epidermis overproduces or underproduces one of the lipids, a good permeability barrier cannot form.
The Acid Mantle
The stratum corneum’s first line of barrier defense is the acid mantle on the surface of the skin. The acid mantle has many tasks. It contains trans-urocanic acid, our natural defense against ultraviolet (UV) radiation—this acid is responsible for filtering out around 70 percent of the UV-B rays that we are exposed to. Deeper within the skin, a key protein called filaggrin is metabolized (broken down) to provide essential barrier components.
On the skin surface, these components are further degraded to produce what is known as “natural moisturizing factor,” which plays a role in keeping the epidermis hydrated and overall barrier function. Maintaining the skin’s surface at its natural, acidic pH level is critical for proper skin barrier function. When we strip away the acid mantle, the consequences include increased TEWL, chronic dry skin, various inflammatory conditions, and even an increased risk of skin cancer.
What else happens when the acid mantle is removed?
First, the skin’s pH rises, making it alkaline instead of acidic. In response, the stratum corneum releases inflammatory cytokines in an attempt to trigger more lipid production. Normally, this would be a good thing and would help return the whole system to a healthy state. However, if this cytokine cascade is continual, chronic inflammation sets in. The result is a very thin, leaky, and permeable skin barrier.
In other situations, increased skin pH may release serine proteases, which block lipid production. In this case, lipids stay trapped within the corneocytes instead of forming the permeability barrier. The result is complete failure of the skin barrier system.
Raising the pH of the skin for sustained periods of time can bring on or heighten the symptoms of acne, atopic dermatitis, rosacea, photodamage, and other conditions—not only affecting the epidermis, but also the dermis. Keep the skin acidic!
Corneotherapy: Restoring the Skin Barrier
When the skin barrier has been compromised, simply using anti-inflammatory ingredients is not enough to restore it. We must pursue treatments that return the barrier to its natural state of balance. This area of skin care is known as corneotherapy or skin barrier therapy.
An important goal of corneotherapy is to generate the three lipids that form the permeability barrier. When we provide these to the skin in the correct ratio using topical corneotherapeutic products, the synthesized lipids make their way through the stratum corneum to be processed along with those that were generated within the skin, forming the lamellar membranes that make up the permeability barrier. The lipids in corneotherapeutic products must always be chemically identical to those within the stratum corneum. Restoring the acid mantle (in other words, getting the skin back to an acidic pH) is the first step in restoring barrier function.
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