The answer is free radicals. It may sound like the scaremongering pseudo-scientific invention of a cosmetics’ marketer but free radicals are a real, destructive force in the everyday life of every cell of your body. A free radical is a rogue molecule created during the natural cell oxidation process. Devoid of a crucial electron it will endeavor to wrest one from wherever it can, often tearing apart healthy body cells in the process.
By keeping the skin flooded with antioxidants, much of this damage – and the water loss, is prevented. Under the sun or toxic environment radical production in the skin is vastly accelerated. It is estimated however, that as little as 1 per cent of the vitamins that we take in make it through to our skin and for this reason aesthetic doctors are attempting to boost our skin’s free radical scavenging power by applying antioxidant vitamins directly to the skin.
A study in France of the government sponsored Supplementation Vitamin and Mineral Antioxidant trial revealed that antioxidant vitamins applied to the skin help to defend the skin against radical damage. The results showed that vitamins applied to the skin gave it such efficient protection, that it was able to go about its natural repair process unchallenged by further assault. The net result is that not only does skin not deteriorate, but it actually improves as damage already done is, to a degree, undone.