[an error occurred while processing this directive] Anti-Aging Beauty Ingredients - Steven and Chris

Anti-Aging Beauty Ingredients


When it comes to shopping for your anti-aging skincare, knowing what ingredients to look for is important. Our beauty expert Christine Cho came by to talk about how to find the right anti-aging ingredient for you!

Half a young woman's face with circular images beside her pinpointing aged skin
Credit: iStock

1. Sun Damaged Skin: Kojic Acid

The Lowdown:

  • Relatively new discovery (only since 1989)
  • By-product in the fermentation process of malting for rice; used in manufacturing of sake.
  • Also from type of fungi: mushroom
  • Used in food and cosmetics to preserve or change colours of substances (on cut fruits prevents oxidative browning; in seafood preserves pink and red colours; lightens skin topically).
  • Antibacterial and anti-fungal
  • Very low percentages used in creams (one per cent or less)

Beauty Benefits:

  • Lightens and brightens skin (reduces melanin production)
  • Age spot and freckle remover
  • Caution: over-extended time may cause skin sensitivity which may lead to contact dermatitis...recommended to rotate products, especially when using any whitening products.
  • Caution: sensitivity to sun.

2. Preventative: L-Ascorbic Acid

The Lowdown:

  • A sugar acid
  • One form of topical vitamin C
  • White to light-yellow crystals or powder
  • Studies prove L-ascorbic acid is an effective topical anti-aging agent, but it is not stable when exposed to air (oxidation makes the vitamin C ineffective and potentially harmful).
  • Must be stored in dark, cold, non-metallic container
  • Name comes from preventing and curing scurvy (lack of vitamin C)
  • 80 per cent of world's supply produced in China
  • Some animals naturally produce it, humans cannot.
  • Two sides to all molecules.
    • L = levo, meaning left. Good for skin and body at molecular level.
    • D = dextro, meaning right. Not good for skin: drying, itching and burning.
  • Derivatives in other forms that are easier to stabilize are not effective on skin. L-ascorbic acid is the only effective form of vitamin C.
  • Stabilized forms with high concentration are very expensive.

Beauty Benefit Claims:

  • Powerful antioxidant, neutralizes free radicals which otherwise destroy skin.
  • Stimulates collagen synthesis. Important for ‘body’ growth, tissue repair and wound healing.
  • Provides photoprotection (collagen decreases with age). Stays in skin for up to 72 hours
  • Helps prevent UV damage
  • Lightens and brightens skin

DIY: Homemade vitamin C serum»

3. Mature Skin: Coenzyme Q-10 (CoQ-10)

The Lowdown:

  • Oil-soluble, vitamin-like substance (aka ubiquinone).
  • Ingested best through meat, fish, vegetable oils or oil-based soft gel capsules.
  • Third most sold dietary ingredient next to omega-3 and multivitamins.

Beauty Benefit Claims:

  • Anti-aging: boosts cell production
  • Antioxidant: combats damage caused by harmful skincare element


Note: Your doctor or dermatologist is the best person to ask about skin-related concerns. This article is not meant to replace their advice.


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