Summer is the perfect time to hike, garden and swim, but the endless days of this laid-back season also include many opportunities for sun damage. Broad-spectrum sunscreen is a must, but there’s more you can do to protect your skin against the sun: namely, antioxidants. Antioxidants are a great way to help neutralize the visible effects the sun may have on skin (such as dark spots and wrinkles), so picking products with antioxidants can go a long way.
First, a quick recap about just what exactly antioxidants do. Free radicals (or as scientists call them, “reactive oxygen species”) form in our bodies from different causes, particularly UV rays. These molecules are missing an electron, so they scavenge around for one and in this process they cause damage to other cells. This is where antioxidants come in to save the day. By “donating” an electron to free radicals, antioxidants manage to neutralize them and halt or minimize the damage.
As you can see, adding antioxidants to your skincare routine can help boost your skin care and sun care, especially while you’re out having fun. Here are five amazing antioxidants to look out for this summer.
Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Extract
Red wine has helped popularize the heart-healthy benefits of grapes, but grapes can protect your skin just as well as your heart. Grape seed extract contains polyphenols, which are among the best-known free radical fighters. The extract also contains resveratrol, a powerful antioxidant which is also the source of wine’s cardio benefits. VITAL C Hydrating Anti-Aging Serum is an IMAGE bestseller that features grape seed extract to help keep skin looking young, uplifted and radiant.
Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract
Often credited as the source behind the flawless complexions of the Japanese, green tea has long been known for its amazing health benefits. It’s also a potent antioxidant, making it a popular ingredient in skincare products. Polyphenols give green tea its antioxidant power, and some research has suggested that the polyphenols in green tea are stronger antioxidants than vitamin C. The polyphenol in green tea is more popularly known as EGCG, or epigallocatechin gallate. Studies have shown that EGCG in green tea helps protect against damage by reactive oxygen species induced by UV rays. ORMEDIC Balancing Antioxidant Serum, VITAL C Hydrating Anti-Aging Serum, and VITAL C Hydrating Antioxidant ACE Serum are all formulated with green tea extract for a burst of antioxidant power.
Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola) Extract
Better known in the West as pennywort, gotu kola has been prized in the East since ancient times for its numerous health benefits. Today, it’s become a favorite in skincare for its anti-aging properties. Just how does Gotu Kola accomplish this task? It’s a rich source of phytonutrients called flavonoids that act as antioxidants. The antioxidants neutralize reactive oxygen species which in turn helps your body support and improve the appearance of collagen-deprived skin. This exotic extract is featured in our VITAL C Hydrating Antioxidant ACE Serum, where it teams up with green tea extract and a red rose wine complex to form an antioxidant super team.
Phyllanthus Emblica (Indian Gooseberry) Fruit Extract
Indian Gooseberry is a fruit rich in vitamin C and various minerals, amino acids, tannins, and flavonoids. Long used in Ayurvedic medicine, the fruit is known for its strong antioxidant activity and has become a popular addition in skincare products. From anti-aging creams and serums to sunscreens, Indian gooseberry has demonstrated its strength in protecting the skin from damage induced by free radicals. Studies have shown that oral and topical applications of the antioxidant compounds in Indian gooseberry have shown a reduction in oxidative damage from reactive oxygen species. Phyllanthus emblica fruit extract is also an important part of our VITAL C Hydrating Anti-Aging Serum, which is a great way to fight oxidative stress for all skin types.
Crithmum Maritimum (Sea Fennel) Extract
The ocean has long been considered the birthplace of all life, so it should come as no surprise that it’s also home to some of the most amazing ingredients in skin care. Among these is the humble sea fennel, which gets its antioxidant power punch from having a high concentration of antioxidant compounds including vitamin C, flavonoids, and carotenoids. Its gentle, yet strong power is what makes it a great addition to ORMEDIC Balancing Antioxidant Serum, the perfect everyday serum for all skin types. This amazing serum has one goal: bring your skin to a state of optimal balance so that you’ll have that naturally healthy glow.