7 Exotic Anti-aging Ingredients You Need To Include In Your Skincare Routine

Skin aging can be a nightmare. The visible pores, dry and dull appearance, and forbid- the wrinkles and sagging, especially around the eyes. As we age, so does our skin, and with time, it loses its ability to hold moisture like it once did, losing its firmness and the radiance you once had.

Not to say all hope is lost. You can stave off these effects with a wholesome skincare routine, especially when you nourish your skin with the right ingredients- antioxidants and humectants are the ones you need to keep close. However, at some point in time, you may find that the same-old products just don’t give your skin that refreshing kick or invigorating lift it really needs. If the usual anti-aging fighters just don’t seem to be working for you anymore, try your hand at these funky-sounding ingredients that in fact do pack a real punch. We’ll take you through 7 curious-surrounding but all natural ingredients you can consider to liven up your beauty regime. Rest assured, they get the job done just as well.

1. Licorice

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Researchers and medical practitioners have long touted the root extract of licorice plants to be a reliable source of anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial compounds. A common name in Chinese remedies, licorice has found its way into the line-up of today’s dermatology treatments, particularly because it combats the harmful effects of UV rays in sunlight, and can lighten the skin. It’s a plus in anti-aging skincare, because it is a source of Licochalcone A, a powerful antioxidant that works against pigmentation. More research has also shown that one of its components can inhibit the enzyme tyrosinase that is responsible for melanin production, which in turn causes the depositions that give rise to age spots.

Strange as it seems, give it a go to illuminate your skin once again.

2. Copper

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While it may appear counter intuitive to be feeding these heavy metals to our skin that could be toxic, copper in fact is free of any of these harmful side effects. Quite the contrary, copper is said to be a wonder ingredient in maintaining your skin’s health and daily renewal.

What it does is that it stimulates the production of elastin and collagen molecules that tighten your skin and keep it from sagging. It also drives the cells to manufacture more hyaluronic acid, often found in your hydrating face masks that keep your complexion full of moisture and thus, keeps the lines from appearing. If that’s not enough, copper adds another layer of protection, defending your skin from infections with its antibacterial and anti-fungal properties.

  • Hibiscus

It’s always nice to see products that contain botanical extracts, but how often do we know what they’re really for? Apart from creating that lovely scent, flower oils and extracts are often home to a rich treasure trove of ingredients that bathe our skin. Hibiscus is no exception to that, and is in fact one of the best sources of all-rounded anti-aging care.

The antioxidants it contains are again crucial for battling the effects of daily sun exposure, but more importantly, the alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) are behind the smooth, youthful glow you get. Found in natural sources like your sugar cane and citrus fruits, they are highly recommended for sloughing off dead skin cells on the surface that create a dull look. This also drives a higher rate of cell renewal and turnover, and this just means fresher, rejuvenated skin! 

  • Grape seed extract

While we’re on our hunt for seedless grapes and lamenting the presence of these tiny tricksters in our mouths, somewhere it’s in high demand, with grape seeds in fact being the healthiest part of the fruit! Bitter as it may be, you won’t be saying the same when it comes to having it on your skin- grape seed extracts are in fact highly praised ingredients in beauty products.

In this case, “don’t judge a book by its cover” would be a good description. Each minute grape seed has very high antioxidant content, and houses a natural plant compound, oligomeric proanthocyanidin complexes (OPCs). These molecules are responsible for targeting free radicals and preventing the damage they do to our skin, and is top notch at keeping wrinkles at bay. More importantly, it is known to be anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial, speeding up wound healing and fighting off the red patches and acne.

  • Turmeric

It’s only human nature that we have a slight aversion to facial products with bright, bold colours- our eyes are used to the soothing clear gels and lightly scented creams, imagining our skin being carefully nourished by the caress of these gentle products. That’s why turmeric as an anti-aging superstar may come as a shock to some, with its signature deep orange tone.

Turmeric is traditionally an Indian spice, made into tea, or even applied as a paste. It’s been highly recommended by experts due to its jam-packed molecular contents. It serves as a reliable source of our ever-important antioxidants which balance out hyperpigmentation and smoothens the lines. Moreover, it contains curcuminoids, a powerful anti-inflammatory compound. Especially for those with sensitive skin, it calms your complexion and deals effectively with flare-ups. This holds back the irritation and damage the environment can cause to our precious skin, and additionally is said to bolster the anti-aging battle by preventing overproduction of melanin. This means less pigments, and less depositions on our skin that give us blemishes!

  • Charcoal

As we’re scanning through ingredient lists, the word charcoal definitely stands out. Isn’t it meant for barbeques? How can it be of any use to my skin, when all I want to do is get as far away from it as possible?

Not so quick. Evidenced by its rising popularity amongst natural beauty brands such as LUSH with their Dark Angel Face and Body Cleanser, charcoal seems to be brewing quite the storm with its many benefits. This detoxification hero in particular works well with clogged pores that come with living in harsh city environments that can expose our skin to all sorts of nasty particles. Used in the past to extract poisons, modern day use of charcoal isn’t that much different.

Upon heating, the charcoal grows in size to form tiny pores that allows it to absorb all sorts of bacteria and residue over a wide area. This means cleansing with charcoal can effectively draw out the many pollutants that clog up our pores and dull our skin’s natural glow. Charcoal ensures a good cleanse that steers us away from chronic exposure that can really irritate our delicate skin and fast forwards aging by weakening the collagen and elastin molecules meant for skin tightness.

  • Microalgae

While this ingredient isn’t exactly a newcomer in the market, sceptics are abound simply because the thought of marine sea gunk slathered on your face just doesn’t seem too appealing. Microalgae is in fact far more than that, and you’ll be sorry for your misjudgement once you find out what it’s capable of.

These plants are resilient little creatures capable of elongating and contracting according to the pressures of the waves, to weather its unpredictable underwater conditions. By including this as a skincare ingredient, researchers hope to capitalize on this unique property to restore the skin’s elasticity. This is especially important for anti-aging, when our skin begins to sag and lose its firm, bouncy touch. Not to forget, it’s a rich source of minerals and vitamins, notably Vitamins A, C and E. Familiar names in the beauty scene, one can never have enough of our vitamins with their anti-oxidant properties that defend us from UV effects.

Hopefully you’ll give these exotic ingredients a second chance, having heard the skin miracles they can work. Aging isn’t too bad a process, not when you have these new tricks up your sleeve.

The next time someone comes your way screaming at the first sign of a wrinkle, you’ll be able to offer them a unique solution that works just as well.

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