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Skin Care

Strength Is The New Anti-Aging:

Five things you need to know about your skin barrier and its link to optimal skin health.

The new year has arrived and as science and overall health continue to take center stage, we're taking a fresh look at how to achieve your best skin yet. The key to strong, resilient skin? A healthy skin barrier.  And with the launch of our NEW Wrinkle Recode™ Moisture Rich Barrier Cream, we've unlocked the key to more youthful and visibly healthier-looking skin.

To celebrate skin barrier awareness and health, we asked the scientists behind our proprietary niacin technology, NIA-114™, to share some skin barrier facts and its role in overall skin health.  Drs. Myron and Elaine Jacobson have dedicated their life’s work to healthy skin and have made some of the most significant discoveries in the field of cellular DNA damage and repair. They are renowned university biochemists, global patent holders, award-winning innovators, have over four decades of experience and are our go-to experts for all things skin barrier.

Ready to give your barrier a boost? Read on.

1. What is the skin barrier?

The skin barrier is the outermost layer of the skin or skin surface.  It acts as a shield to keep unwanted elements from entering and the vital elements from leaving.  It's made up of cells and lipids that work together to protect skin and renew themselves every few months.  The skin is the body's largest organ and it requires a tremendous amount of energy for barrier renewal.  And with age and environmental damage like sun exposure, that renewal process can be interrupted.

2. Why is the skin barrier important?

The skin barrier is crucial for two reasons. First, it protects potentially harmful environmental agents such as chemical pollutants, microorganisms, too much sunlight, etc. Second, it prevents the loss of water and many other beneficial components necessary to skin health and appearance. In short, the skin barrier acts as the gatekeeper to healthy skin; it keeps out the bad and keeps in the good

3. Please explain the link between the skin barrier and signs of aging.

Lines and wrinkles can be the result of damage to the skin barrier over time. Deep wrinkles are mainly caused by damage to the dermis layer of skin, but increased water loss due to barrier impairment accentuates wrinkles' appearance. Barrier repair with increased hydration improves skin firmness, smoothness, and texture. Increased energy status enhances skin radiance.  

4. How does one maintain a healthy skin barrier?

Maintaining skin health—like maintaining health in general—should be considered an active, ongoing process. Skin barrier integrity depends upon multiple factors. There are significant individual differences determined by genetics that cannot be controlled. However, to maintain the healthiest skin barrier possible, one should avoid too much sun exposure and utilize sunscreens to limit sun damage.

5. How do you know if your skin barrier is healthy?

If you regularly wear SPF, your skin maintains moisture and hydration, feels or looks plump and firm, and has a glow; chances are your barrier is healthy. If your skin barrier is compromised or impaired, it will have a decreased ability to prevent water loss. With water loss, you'll see increased skin laxity (slack skin), which increases the appearance of fine lines and deep wrinkles, as well as chronic dehydration and dullness. Long-term sun exposure is one of the leading culprits behind barrier impairment.

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