If you have searched the internet on how to get plumper, firmer and glowing skin or bought OTC anti-ageing skin creams and lotions, then you must have come across the terms collagen and elastin multiple times. But what exactly do these terms means and why do dermats dub it essential in all anti-ageing solutions? We asked Dr Rashmi Shetty, Mumbai-based celebrity cosmetic dermatologist and here’s what she told us.
“Much like any building structure, the skin also stands firm on a series of scaffolding proteins that are found in multiple layers of the dermis. These scaffolding proteins make up the supporting structure of the skin. Collagen and elastin are the two such primary fibres that are responsible for holding the skin firm and tight and give it its youthful laxity,” says Dr Rashmi.
“In young skin, there is no dearth of these fibres. However, as we age, the skin’s ability to regenerate itself and product collagen and elastin slows down. A number of environmental and physiological factors also cause the breakdown of collagen and elastin. For example, exposure to UV radiation, mental stress and smoking all cause collagen degeneration. This is why the skincare industry is invested so deeply in research and production of products and procedures that help boost the regeneration of these skin fibres. A number of creams, serums and anti-ageing products today claim to boost the skin’s capacity to generate collagen and elastin," explains Dr Rashmi.
"Boosting fibroblast cells in the skin is essential to boosting the production of collagen and elastin as it is the fibroblasts that produce these fibres. Skincare products with retinol, alpha hydroxyl acid and peptides help achieve this end to some extent," she says.
"Skin rejuvenation procedure such as laser skin resurfacing and exfoliation procedures like hydradermabrasion and peels help stimulate the skin’s healing mechanism, thereby boosting the generation of these fibres. Hyaluronic acid-based skin bioremodelling procedure Profhilo is one of the latest approaches to anti-ageing. In this procedure, a highly pure form of hyaluronic acid is administered at different sites on the skin, which stimulate’s the skin’s ability to generate collagen and elastin fibres," says Dr Rashmi.
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