Countering the Impact of Caffeine on the Skin
We admit that the title of this blog may be a little bit misleading and controversial, especially because the majority of what you will find and read in beauty and healthcare sources is that caffeine is good for the skin. However, it is important to recognize that caffeine also has a downside and can be quite destructive, aging your skin and bringing wrinkles out. To be fair and balanced we will take a look at the good and the bad sides of this popular drug.
Caffeine Can Help Your Skin
First the good. A great summation of the benefits that caffeine has on your skin comes from our friends at FutureDerm: Caffeine works on skin in the three primary ways: as an antioxidant (fighting future signs of aging), a diuretic (making the skin temporarily appear smoother), and a vasoconstrictor (may help to reduce puffiness and dark circles caused by vasodilation)... [Also] topical application of caffeine or caffeine sodium benzoate have been shown by Lu et. al earlier this year to have a sunscreen effect, enhance UVB-induced apoptosis, and inhibit UVB-induced skin carcinogenesis when applied to the skin of mice. The exact mechanism by which caffeine achieves these aims is not yet known, but it may be related to the fact that the caffeic acid found in caffeine has been found to have some antioxidant activity. Topical application of caffeine additionally dehydrates skin cells, making the skin temporarily appear smoother. a diuretic (making the skin temporarily appear smoother). Lastly, caffeine is a vasoconstrictor, and its topical application may reduce the appearance of under-eye puffiness and dark circles, although only those caused by vasodilation. For these reasons we use green tea extract in Calysta Labs products. According to NIH studies, green tea is a powerful source of antioxidants. It becomes a powerful source through its polyphenols, which directly "scavenge reactive oxygen species or chelating transition metals as has been demonstrated in vitro. Alternatively, they may act indirectly by up-regulating phase II antioxidant enzymes. Evidence of this latter effect has been observed in vivo, yet more work is required to determine under which conditions these mechanisms occur. Green tea polyphenols can also be potent pro-oxidants, both in vitro and in vivo, leading to the formation of hydrogen peroxide, the hydroxyl radical, and superoxide anion." (Source). Green tea has also been shown to have strong anti-inflammatory properties. The benefits of caffeine can outweigh the disadvantages only when it is used in a targeted cosmetic, or medicinal way and not consumed or used in excess.
Caffeine Can Be Harmful to Your Skin
The problem with excess caffeine intake or use is primarily three fold. The first is that the same properties that make caffeine help your skin by being a diuretic can also harm your skin. Diuretics lower the amount of salt and water in your body. This can lead to dehydration because it makes you urinate more. Dehydration absolutely can cause your skin to lose its plumpness and healthy appearance . It reduces your natural glow. It can also cause your sebaceous glands to become overactive, which can lead to acne. Thus, if overused, caffeine can instigate aging and wrinkles. Countering this requires extra hydration-boosting moisturiser applied to your skin. The second issue with caffeine is that it has been shown to weaken, or thin, the dermis layer of the skin. The dermis is the thickest, and middle layer of your skin. It is the part of your skin that contains proteins that include collagen and elastin which give the skin its strength and flexibility. Overconsumption or overuse can interrupt your collagen production, which amplifies the impact of dehydration. Collagen is built by cells called fibroblasts. Those cells secrete pro collagen and elastin fibers. Collagen makes up most of the dermis. It is important to realize that as you age, you naturally lose collagen production. This means that when you further disrupt collagen production with caffeine, you need more effective, anti-aging compounds in your skin care regimen to maintain a youthful look. Countering the impacts can be done with Calysta Labs Illuminating Anti-Aging Serum.