Grooming Hacks: How Cellular Science Can Help Your Skin To Care For Itself
Good grooming, first and foremost, is about looking after one’s self. And while it’s all well and good to slap on a face mask and hope for the best, it’s also worth looking a little deeper. Or, at least, looking to the brands that are doing so. Science-based heavyweights such as 111Skin, Dr. Barbara Sturm or Augustinus Bader are less interested in formulating products that simply give skin a temporary boost. Instead, they want to go right down to a cellular level, focusing on ingredients and technology that encourage skin to support itself from within.
The scientist and skin expert Dr Augustinus Bader, who has created a brand around the concept of epigenetic skincare support, explains: “While every individual is unique, all humans share the same innate repair potential in their genetic code. Inciting repair processes in the skin is more relevant and also more universal. We all have the means to course-correct our cells.”
When shopping for skincare, look for biomimetic or biocatalyst ingredients; these are recognised by your skin’s biology and are designed to absorb into skin easily and enhance its natural processes. By restocking their supplies – which reduce as we age – we are optimising our skin’s ability to care for itself. Think of this new wave of products as your complexion’s code breakers, hacking into your skin and upgrading the software. Here are five ways to get started.
01. Hydrate and activate
Able to draw up to 1,000 times its weight in water, hyaluronic acid is to dehydrated skin what Mr Harry Styles is to groovy trousers – it just works. It is naturally occurring in the skin and, when applied topically, can trigger the body to rev up its own production of HA, meaning your face will start ironing out those fine lines all by itself. And in this category, Dr. Barbara Sturm is considered to have one of the best hyaluronic products going. The concentrated complex uses both long- and short-chain molecular structures of the ingredient to cater to multi-level penetration, meaning the serum can hydrate several layers of your skin with ease.
02. Crack your complexion code
Biohacking might sound like a dramatic thing to introduce to your grooming routine, but it needn’t be all that complex. Augustinus Bader’s simply titled The Cream contains a complex of more than 40 different molecules known as Trigger Factor Complex 8. An ingredient originally developed to treat burn victims, TFC8 delivers potent actives that dial into our cellular comms and kick-start a reparative response. It’s like the matrix of miracle creams, and has a legion of cult fans to prove it.
03. Programme a cellular cleanup
Another way to optimise cell function to your benefit is by taking a naturally occurring compound and putting it into other parts of the body – think adrenaline, hyaluronic acid or plasma. Deoxycholic acid is one of those compounds, found in the body liver to emulsify fats. When you top your body’s levels of it via localised injection, it can work to burn fat in that area. That’s right – it is one of the few solutions that is scientifically proven to do so and has become popular for treating chins, stomachs and other blubber-prone areas. It works by breaking down the cell membrane of fat and inducing an inflammatory response, which in turn gets eliminated via the lymphatic system.
04. Charge your batteries
If we think of our skin like a sophisticated computer system, then adenosine triphosphate (ATP) – a nifty little ingredient – is the battery. Every one of our cells require a constant source of energy to maintain their biological processes, including our skin. ATP is the activated molecule that carries energy, which deteriorates as we age. Ingesting this in the morning is a bit like switching from airplane mode to high power – it just gets everything going. Find it in The Nue Co.’s aptly named Bio-Hack Supplement Program, which is loaded with epigenetic ingredients and balancing botanicals for optimum cell-care function.
05. Add some antioxidants
Amino acids are the building blocks of every cell we have. These can be found in various forms throughout skincare products, but, as of right now, glutathione – known as the master antioxidant – is getting people talking. A tripeptide made up of three amino acids, this clever complex stimulates cell regeneration to prevent damage and deterioration. The ingredient also helps to deactivate tyrosinase (the enzyme that produces melanin), so if hyperpigmentation is a problem, give this a go.
Illustrations by Mr Frank Moth