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If you’re not ready for a lift, injection or overall tweak to your complexion, advancements in skincare formulations and ingredients mean that there are plenty of viable topical alternatives you can add into your skincare routine that rival in-office treatments geared for lifting, plumping and smoothing the skin. We sat down with Dr. G to learn more about how to obtain that youthful-glowing complexion without any needles.

If you don’t want to try injectables yet, what sort of effect will products alone have?

Anti-aging, plumping, filling serums will cause the skin to feel tight, fuller and diminish the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. A topical serum is a great place to start of you’re unsure about getting an injectable.

Why do you think some women are still choosing to find results from their product over injectables? What are the pluses when it comes to products?

Many of my patients over the years have been afraid of needles or simply putting anything foreign into their bodies. This lead to creating our Needle-less serum. The pluses from choosing to use a topical product versus an injectable are anxiety, foreign ingredient in the body, price, bruising, possible over use of an injectable resulting in a frozen or, waxy or “overdone look”. In rare instances allergic reaction may be a deciding factor. However, for the most part injectables when performed by a professional are very very safe and allow people to look and feel their best. For optimal results in targeting fine line and wrinkles, I would recommend both anti-aging injectables and topical products. Topical products will help with maintenance between treatments and will allow the effect to last longer.

How long do you need to use them for to see results?

Topical products generally take 6-8 weeks to see the result. These products have a cumulative effect and need to be used very consistently, usually twice a day. I always recommend using these in conjunction with exfoliation as the newer the skin the better the results.

Is there a type of delivery system that’s particularly effective?

There are many wonderful products/delivery systems on the market, but Needle-less serum is a water based serum which delivers Acetyl Hexapeptide and Hyaluronic acid directly to the surface of the skin. With continued use, your skin will reap the benefits of looking younger, feeling smoother, and appearing more radiant. Ideal for all skin types.

What ingredient should you look out for if you want lifting/firming/smoothing/plumping?

  • Acetyl hexapeptide-3 is a powerful wrinkle-reducing peptide that works by hindering a signal protein called catecholamine that triggers muscle contraction, thereby relaxing your facial muscles.
  • Hyaluronic Acid helps skin to  feel plump, appear firm and diminish the appearance of fine lines and deep creases. Both found n Needle-less serum. CoQ10 is another powerhouse ingredient which helps protect skin from free radical attack and damage and my help the skin appear fuller and balanced.
  • Vitamin B3 is one of the most effective ingredients in reducing collagen breakdown while simultaneously increasing fibroblast production. Vitamin B appears in just two main forms: nicotinic acid (also known as niacin) and nicotinamide (also called niacinamide).
  • The ability of vitamin C to revitalize aging skin is largely due to its beneficial effects on collagen. Collagen is a tough, fibrous protein that is relatively inelastic and very strong. It supplies the basic framework that gives your skin its form, firmness, and strength, while elastin provides flexibility. Fortunately, topical vitamin C has been scientifically proven to help stimulate collagen synthesis. It also helps block the production of enzymes the break down collagen, making it one of nature’s most effective anti-aging nutrients.
  • Plant-based stem cells contain high levels of active proteins, which work topically to regulate the stem-cell division in our skin cells. They essentially act as a massive protective barrier for the skin to allow our cells to regenerate at a healthy speed without being compromised by external factors including pollution and UVA/UVB rays. They aid in the reduction of the appearance of wrinkle depth, the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, an even complexion, plumper appearing skin and the longevity of healthy human skin cells. Some of my favorites to formulate with (found in our proprietary PURFLORA complex) are Raspberry Leaf Extract, Comfrey Stem Cells, White Tea Leaf Extract, Garden Crest Sprouts and Birds of Paradise extract.
  • Retinol is a form of Vitamin A. Retinol can improve the appearance of lines and wrinkles and increases collagen production. Retinol delivers an overall tighter, firmer, plumper appearance to the skin.

Is there anything especially preventative you can do instead of filler/Botox etc?

  1. Protect your skin. The Sun is the number one environmental damage for skin.  Both UVA/UVB rays are harmful. Protect yourself by wearing a hat and sunglasses. Shielding your skin, head and eyes can help with sun damage and pollution-based aging. Always wash you face to remove the residue and makeup from the day.
  2. Eat a diet high in anti-oxidant rich foods such as leafy greens and berries and foods high in essential fatty acids (salmon and almonds). Stay away form foods that can encourage and cause Glycation. The Glycation process, which is basically, sugars (from food and alcohol) breaking down the collagen fibers in the skin and therefore speeding up the aging process. Foods that feed Glycation and cause inflammation in the body and the skin are carbohydrates, fried foods, sugar, fatty meats and alcohol.
  3. As you grow older, the rate of skin cell turnover slows down dramatically. Dead cells on your skin’s surface hang around much longer, a fact that tends to accentuate those fine lines and make your complexion look dull and lifeless. By removing these dead skin cells, exfoliation helps make up for the gradual slowing down of your natural skin renewal process, improving the tone and texture of your skin.
  4. Facial massage, gua sha, micro current, lymphatic drainage all can help the skin’s appearance.

Hydration is a basic tenet of skin health. When moisturized, the skin barrier is strong, and the complexion is plump, smooth, and bright. When dry, the skin barrier is compromised, and the complexion is slack, dull, and prone to premature aging (yes, we’re talking about the early development of fine lines and wrinkles). So, while it might sound cliché, the old adage is worth repeating—hydrated skin is happy skin.

Seeing as the skin is the body’s largest organ, and it protects us from everything we come into contact with throughout our day, including nasty toxins, environmental pollution, and more, it’s critical that we consciously curate our skincare routines to best protect it and maintain it, and hydration is the first and most basic step in that quest.

So, how do you hydrate our skin most effectively? It might sound counterintuitive, but in order to understand skin hydration, you must first understand skin dehydration. It’s like they say, in order to truly recognize something, you have to first be able to recognize its opposite. In this case, that means understanding the difference between dehydration and dryness (because, yes, there’s technically a difference), the causes of skin dehydration, and the products to use to cure it. That’s where we come in. Keep reading to dive into the ins and outs of skin hydration vs. skin dehydration.

The Difference Between Dry Skin and Dehydrated Skin

Although some people use the terms dehydrated and dry interchangeably, many others recognize a difference in between the two words’ meanings. What is that difference? One word refers to a temporary (and fixable) state, while the other refers to an unchanging skin type. Let us explain it further…

Dehydrated skin is temporary. It refers to a lack of water in the skin, and it can be caused by a number of factors, including dry weather, arid environments, lack of proper nourishment, unhealthy lifestyle habits, and using harsh, moisture-stripping skincare products too often. Dry skin is different in that it’s a permanent skin type. It refers to a natural lack of oil, or sebum, produced by the skin.

How to Tell If You Have Dry Skin or Dehydrated Skin

If you’re experiencing flakiness and/or incessant itchiness over the course of weeks and months, it’s likely that you have a naturally dry skin type. With dry skin, people will often notice specific parts of the face stay consistently dry. Most commonly it’s the skin around the mouth and nose and the area that spans across the browbone (just know that having naturally dry skin doesn’t mean you can’t have healthy, glowing skin, too. It comes down to your lifestyle habits and skincare routine (but more on that later).

Dehydrated skin, on the other hand, is often characterized by short-term dullness and redness. You will likely feel a sensation of tightness, almost as if your skin is being stretched uncomfortably taut across your face and/or body. If that’s the case, your skin is asking for more moisture, and you can, and should, provide it with moisture in a variety of ways. If you don’t, you’ll likely see the dullness, redness, and sensitivity progress. You might develop uneven, bumpy texture. You might even see premature signs of aging appear, such as sagging skin, fine lines, and wrinkles.

How to Turn Dull, Dry, and Dehydrated Skin into Healthy Hydrated Skin

Dehydrated skin can be fixed quite easily once it’s been recognized. Start by eating fruits and vegetables, drinking water, and getting enough sleep each night. These lifestyle habits are extremely important in preserving and promoting the health of the skin and body.

Also be sure to take a look at your current skincare routine. Make sure that you’re only using exfoliants and other reactive skincare products (like those that contain high percentages of vitamin C or retinol) sparingly, because if you’re using them too often, you could be compromising your skin’s natural barrier and thus losing precious hydration.

Your next step is to incorporate hydrating skincare products into your routine. We like those that contain moisture-boosting ingredients like hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and squalene, all of which provide and/or preserve moisture in the skin.

Squalane is a derivative of squalene, a moisturizing molecule that occurs naturally in our skin. Due to its exceptional moisturizing capabilities, it’s a star ingredient in many skincare products, including the Wake Up Call Overnight Regenerative Facial. This intense overnight moisturizer also includes glycerin, avocado oil, and other moisturizing ingredients to imbue your skin with deep hydration as you sleep.

Hyaluronic acid is a molecule that holds up to 1000 times its own weight in water, keeping the skin plump and hydrated even in the midst of winter. You can find hyaluronic acid, as well as antioxidant-rich kale sprout water and soothing aloe, in Goldfaden’s Mist RX. It’s a super fine face mist that hydrates and refreshes the skin throughout the day.

Glycerin is a humectant, meaning it preserves moisture in the skin. You can find it in Goldfaden’s Detox Hydrating Gel, which is a lightweight moisturizer formulated for people with blemish-prone skin. (It also contains sodium hyaluronate, which is the sodium form of hyaluronic acid and is just as hydrating, and salicylic acid, which is a blemish-fighting exfoliant).

One more thing. Oils trap moisture on the skin, so if your skin is really lacking moisture, consider using an oil-based product as the final step in your skincare routine, because it will secure all of the moisture from the previous skincare products you’ve used underneath. This is why oils are so useful for people with dry skin types, especially. The Fleuressence Native Botanical Cell Oil combines the powers of a number of natural oils, plus free radical-fighting Co-Enzyme Q10 and omega fatty acids to nourish the skin and boost radiance in a big way.

No matter your skin type, know that healthy hydrated skin is possible, and it could be only a few steps away—with healthy habits and proper hydration, that is.

Written by, Kaitlyn McLintock

ABOUT THE WRITER:

Kaitlyn McLintock is a beauty and wellness writer based in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in such publications as Popsugar, Byrdie, Hello Giggles, Who What Wear, and more. When she’s not writing, researching, and editing, or testing out the latest skincare and makeup products, she’s drinking coffee and spritzing Goldfaden’s Mist RX all over her skin.

Why does our skin lose elasticity as we age and what does this lead to visibly? 

Overall, the amount of new collagen that your skin produces declines with age, while the rate of its destruction increases. Environmental aggressors are one of the main causes of aging skin damage and cancer. Daily aggressors like the sun, the air, pollution, exhaust, smoking, second hand smoke, radiation, the ozone, unclean skincare products (ingredients ie: phalates, mineral oil), ingested food and water all contribute to the demise of our healthy skin cells. Environmental aggressors deliver free radicals to the skin, which in turn cause the breakdown of collagen, onset of wrinkles, cell mutation, aging, dark spots, dehydration, inflammation, immune function damage and in some instances cancer.

By 25 years of age human production of collagen starts to naturally decrease, this increase even more for women post menopause. Collagen is one of three structural proteins that our bodies produce. Elastin and Glycosaminoglycans are the other two, which we will get to. Collagen is responsible for providing tissue and organs strength. As we age collagen is produced less and tissue begins to disconnect thus creating wrinkles, dryness and sagging skin. Elastin also plays a big role in aging, although not as plentiful in the skin as collagen, it is still important. Elastin is responsible for stretching abilities and ‘snapping back’, think of the word ‘elastic’. Once elastin starts to diminish, skin will look saggy, sunken and limp. Glycosaminoglycans are responsible for keeping collagen and elastin supported in the cellular space. Starting early is beneficial but the good news is it is never too late to start an anti-aging regimen!

What are the most effective topical ingredients to seek in elasticity-promoting skincare ingredients?

  • Vitamin B3 is one of the most effective ingredients in reducing collagen breakdown while simultaneously increasing fibroblast production. Vitamin B appears in just two main forms: nicotinic acid (also known as niacin) and nicotinamide (also called niacinamide).
  • The ability of vitamin C to revitalize aging skin is largely due to its beneficial effects on collagen. Collagen is a tough, fibrous protein that is relatively inelastic and very strong. It supplies the basic framework that gives your skin its form, firmness, and strength, while elastin provides flexibility. Fortunately, topical vitamin C has been scientifically proven to help stimulate collagen synthesis. It also helps block the production of enzymes the break down collagen, making it one of nature’s most effective anti-aging nutrients.
  • Plant-based stem cells contain high levels of active proteins, which work topically to regulate the stem-cell division in our skin cells. They essentially act as a massive protective barrier for the skin to allow our cells to regenerate at a healthy speed without being compromised by external factors including pollution and UVA/UVB rays. They aid in the reduction of the appearance of wrinkle depth, the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, an even complexion, plumper appearing skin and the longevity of healthy human skin cells. Some of my favorites to formulate with (found in our proprietary PURFLORA complex) are Raspberry Leaf Extract, Comfrey Stem Cells, White Tea Leaf Extract, Garden Crest Sprouts and Birds of Paradise extract.
  • Retinol is a form of Vitamin A. Retinol can improve the appearance of lines and wrinkles and increases collagen production. Retinol delivers an overall tighter, firmer, plumper appearance to the skin.

What are some of the best types of food to eat for healthy skin, and what are the benefits of each?

Eating fried foods, processed foods and sugar can wreak havoc on your skin causing puffiness, redness, blemishes, blotchiness, and in all cases Glycation. The Glycation process is sugar (from food and alcohol) breaking down the collagen fibers in the skin and speeding up the aging process – think premature wrinkles and loss of elasticity. Eating ‘superfoods’ will benefit the internal health as well as the external glow. 

Salmon: rich in Omega-3 fatty acids is none of the most beneficial due to its ability to greatly reduce inflammation and dryness and increase circulation – a key attribute to healthy, youthful-looking skin.

Fermented foods: Think kimchee, sauerkraut or pickled vegetables. These foods contain probiotics which help keep the gut healthy.  A healthy gut helps the digestive system and immune system. Probiotics have been shown to help with skin issues such as eczema, rosacea, acne and aging skin.

Foods rich in antioxidants:  Leafy green blueberries, blackberries, avocado, broccoli, nuts. These all contain high levels of antioxidants which are crucial for overall help and fighting off free radical damage.

Are there any other holistic treatments or lifestyle practices that can also promote elasticity outside of our skincare regimen? 

The Sun is the number one environmental damage for skin.  Both UVA/UVB rays are harmful. Protect yourself by wearing a hat and sunglasses. Shielding your skin, head and eyes can help with sun damage and pollution-based aging. Always wash you face to remove the residue and makeup from the day.

Eat a diet high in anti-oxidant rich foods such as leafy greens and berries and foods high in essential fatty acids (salmon and almonds). Stay away form foods that can encourage and cause Glycation. The Glycation process, which is basically, sugars (from food and alcohol) breaking down the collagen fibers in the skin and therefore speeding up the aging process. Foods that feed Glycation and cause inflammation in the body and the skin are carbohydrates, fried foods, sugar, fatty meats and alcohol.

Exfoliation is a must! As you grow older, the rate of skin cell turnover slows down dramatically. Dead cells on your skin’s surface hang around much longer, a fact that tends to accentuate those fine lines and make your complexion look dull and lifeless. By removing these dead skin cells, exfoliation helps make up for the gradual slowing down of your natural skin renewal process, improving the tone and texture of your skin.

Are there any supplements that you would suggest incorporating into a regime to help boost the body’s overall ability to support overall skin health? 

am a big proponent of vitamins and recommend them to my patients, friends and family. Vitamin D, my personal favorite, more closely resembles a hormone than a vitamin. The active form of vitamin D, called calcitriol, is the most powerful hormone produced by the human body. It has the ability to activate over 2000 genes, many of which are involved in critical aspects of skin cell metabolism, growth, repair, and protection.  Vitamin D in addition to being a key factor in skin cell growth and replacement, vitamin D also plays a major role in skin repair and protection (and can be found in our Vital Boost product). When microorganisms attack the skin, they secrete certain extracts that stimulate your skin to produce vitamin D. This vitamin D signals your skin’s innate immune system to start manufacturing a substance called cathelicidin, a very powerful germicide. Cathelicidin disrupts the integrity of bacterial cell membranes, resulting in the death of the microbes. Cathelicidin also helps promote the development of blood vessels and encourages new cell growth, both of which are essential for proper wound healing.

Probiotics: Ingesting daily probiotics is one of the healthiest supplements. Probiotics keep the gut bacteria and yeast in balance while targeting inflammation, strengthening immune functions, allergies and urinary tract health. Probiotics are beneficial for certain skin issues as they can help decrease redness and the formation of fine lines and wrinkles. Probiotics also aid in increasing elasticity of the skin and smoothness.

Glucosamine: Delivers anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects in promoting joint health, crucial as we age.

Curcumin: A powerful compound found in the Turmeric plant, Curcumin may help to prevent heart disease, Alzheimer’s and cancer. Curcumin delivers super high levels of  potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant protection.

LED lights, micro-current, regular exercise, and lymphatic drainage can all help to ward off and decrease the appearance of aging and sagging skin.