Want healthy, young, firm skin from the inside out?
Here are some good old-fashioned fats – aka ceramides – that will do the trick. A skincare ingredient that is underappreciated and overlooked. You may have seen it in moisturizers, night creams, anti-ageing products, and sometimes in facial cleansers.
They play an important role in keeping a protective barrier between you and the polluted world outside. However, as with many other age-related side effects, the level of natural ceramide production decreases over time. How do you deal with this? It's as simple as that: replenish the ceramides.
What are ceramides?
Ceramides are fat molecules also known as lipids. They are present in skin cells and account for approximately 50% of the skin's outer layer (epidermis), so they play an important role in skin health.
What do ceramides do?
Here's a simple example of bricks and cement. In a wall, cement holds bricks together. In the same way, ceramides also serve to prevent moisture loss from the skin by forming a protective layer.
It protects the skin from visible damage due to pollution and other environmental stresses.
The body naturally produces ceramides, which are needed and used by everyone.
Those with dry skin and conditions like eczema, rosacea, and acne have lower ceramide levels in their skin than they should. As a result, the skin becomes dry, sensitive, and irritated.
If my skin already has ceramides, why do I need them in skincare products?
Ceramide levels in your skin decrease with age. Also, sun damage reduces the effectiveness of your skin's natural ceramides and can deplete them over time, weakening its barrier.
Dry, rough skin, wrinkles, irritation, redness, and visible signs of dehydration result from this process.
You lose about 40% of your skin's ceramides by the time you reach your 30s, and 60% by your 40s.
This is where skincare knowledge comes in handy because it is possible to restore what has been lost significantly.
Ceramide levels in the skin are generally increased by applying ceramide-containing products. AM or PM can also be used throughout the day.
Find products with ceramides like serums, creams, lotions & masks since cleansers will be washed off without any benefits.
What are the benefits of ceramides?
Well-formulated (and correctly packaged) ceramide-containing skincare products will help strengthen your skin's barrier and improve hydration, giving you plumper, smoother, firmer-feeling skin with fewer visible wrinkles and lines.
How do I identify ceramides in a product?
Most of the time, ceramides will be listed on the ingredients page like ceramide AP, EOP, NG, NP, or NS.
Or sometimes, they will be listed with names that might be difficult to recognise.
Such as Phytosphingosine and sphingosine are ceramide precursors, which means they can encourage the skin to produce ceramides.
However, as they have anti-ageing properties, most products will prominently display them on their labels or product pages if included in the formula.
Which skin types are ceramides best for ?Ceramides are "skin-replenishing" (also known as skin-identical) ingredients.
Because ceramides are produced naturally by your skin, they are perfect for all skin types, even the most sensitive, acne-prone or oily skin. As long as the product is free of fragrance and irritants, you can also use them around the eyes.
Which other ingredients do ceramides work well with?
Fatty acids, glycerin, and cholesterol are skin-nourishing components that work best when combined with ceramides in a formulation.
These lipid combinations are excellent for enhancing skin texture, tone, and reducing sensitivity symptoms.
Make sure your ceramide-enriched product also contains antioxidants and "skin-restoring" ingredients like retinol, niacinamide, linoleic acid, and peptides because no one ingredient can effectively fight all of the visible signs of ageing.