Loss of skin elasticity and sagging is one of the signs of ageing. Turkey necks, sagging jowls, wilting cheeks are conditions influenced by elastin, a protein in the dermis which, together with collagen and glycosaminoglycans, makes up the connective tissue.
Skin elasticity is a mechanical property of the skin due to its elastin content. Elastin is a dermal protein which, together with collagen and glycosaminoglycans, constitutes the connective tissue.
Collagen accounts for 70% of the skin connective tissue; it is synthesized as three α-polypeptide chains (procollagen) that convert into collagen in the extracellular space. The most abundant amino acids are: glycine, proline, hydroxyproline and alanine. Seven types of collagen have been described according to their composition and antigenic properties: type I is the most abundant one in the dermis, although type III (reticular fibers) can also be found. Collagen fibers are assumed to be responsible for the consistency of the connective tissue.
Glycosaminoglycans in the dermal connective tissue fill the extracellular spaces among fibers and cells.
All the elements in the skin connective tissue are related to each other and together determine the functions of this tissue.
The connective tissue is affected by a large number of life events such as cutaneous ageing, pregnancy, slimming processes and cellulitis which eventually cause it to change. Due to aging, the metabolism of the proteins of the connective tissue decreases and there is an ever greater presence of enzymes, principally elastases and collagenases, which are responsible for breaking down the elastin and the collagen.
As this tissue reaches maturity, protein turnover becomes much slower. In general, such slowdown becomes evident from the early 30s. Besides the age-related slowdown, there are a number of life events and external factors such as stress, dietary habits, lifestyle changes, pregnancy etc.
Cellulite is another factor that modify the connective tissue. Cellulite dramatically reduces the elasticity of the skin; first because of the presence of edema fluids and later on, because of the formation of sclerotic nodules in the dermis and the epidermis, which stretch the tissues in a continued and disproportionate way.
What do we do?
One way to prevent such a loss of elasticity is to use active ingredients that are able to inhibit elastase enzymes or provide anti-elastase and anti-collagenases properties.
Thus, it is necessary to prevent the effects of physiological and environmental aging, the onset of cellulite, and the fast weight fluctuations. During weight loss processes, the connective tissue should be allowed to restructure, thus preventing the occurrence of stretch marks and ptosis or droopy skin.
Active ingredients to
- stimulate fibroblastic protein synthesis
- inhibit elastase to prevent elastin proteolysis and the consequent firmness loss
- stabilize glycosaminoglycans in the connective tissue, particularly in the collagen fibers-rich, especially silicon-rich
Research has shown that a plant complex of lady's thistle, alchemilla or yarrow, horsetail, combined with amino acids and proteins from seeds provide anti-elastase and anti-collagenases properties. These plants and seeds are selected on the basis of its specific action on the connective tissue of the dermis, so as to influence all the factors involved in the loss of elasticity.
The plant and seeds complex provide tannins, silymarin, silicon, amino acids, vitamins and protein derivatives.
Check out our cream for skin firming using these ingredients.
Benaiges, A, et al. “Study of the Refirming Effect of a Plant Complex.” Advances in Pediatrics., U.S. National Library of Medicine, Aug. 1998, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18505506.