What will be the future of cutting-edge skin care? Whilst beauty products are increasingly driven by natural and organic claims, pioneering developments in the beauty world are also being redefined by technology, giving products a smart and scientific edge. Much of this influence manifests in apps that offer personalisation and targeted skin care, but also in new formulas, concepts, and devices.
Photo-dynamic skin care
The blue light emitted from electronics has been an increasing cause for concern, as it is claimed that prolonged exposure affects skin health and causes premature ageing.
Now, though, there are a new generation of products claiming to harness blue light and use it to activate ingredients beneficial to the skin, for example the Nite version of AlgaAktiv GenoFix. The science of generating and harnessing light is known as photonics, and now bio-photonics is a growing field concerning how light particles or photons act on tissues, organisms and other biological materials. These discoveries are predicted to lead the next generation of cutting-edge skin care.
These principles do not simply apply to a product in its formulation, but also its packaging too. Some skin care brands are now packaged in violet glass, filtering out the rays that would apparently accelerate decay and degradation, so that the formula remains potent for a long period of time.
Hacking the Microbiome
The bacteria living on and in our bodies play a crucial role in all sorts of areas of health, and we are only beginning to understand the true extent of this. These bacteria are involved in processes concerning our immunity, our absorption of food, the regulation of our moods and more. In this way, there is an argument to say that they are as if an extensive of our selves. Frequent washing and greater levels of cleanliness in our lives has for a long time been said to affect these bacteria, and attention is turning to this even more.
Whilst a case has been made for the skin-damaging effects of over-washing, answered in part by gentle formulations of skin care and personal care products that disrupt the skin as little as possible, there is now a discussion of how formulations can in fact actively protect and support the microbiome.
The brand Mother Dirt, launched by startup AOBiome, is said to enhance and protect the skin’s bacteria. The products use so-called ammonia-oxidising bacteria (AOB) to test the microbiome-friendliness of a product – it is claimed that if it were not for the widespread use of soaps and deodorants, AOB would have populated the skin microbiome naturally, keeping the balance of bacteria in check.
Communication between what we think of as our selves and our microbiome is powerful, and this ‘talking’ concept is something that present-day consumers understand. If communication between bacteria can be hacked, it is possible to find new ways to protect the skin.
Plasma is the fourth state of matter, created from some gases. When sufficient energy is passed through a gas (in the form of electricity or heat), electrons are stripped from their atoms, creating a mass of free electrons and positively charged ions that is known as an ionised gas, or plasma. Because plasma contains these free electrons, it is able to conduct electricity, hence its use in plasma televisions. It also produces and responds to magnetic fields.
Now plasma is being incorporated into high-tech skin care devices, in a technology whereby plasma is emitted to deliver effects to the skin upon contact. When ions in the plasma interact with the skin, oxygen and elastin fibres are stimulated in a way that triggers ‘modification’, restructuring and regeneration of the skin’s architecture. As well as an anti-aging method, it also means that this technique can be used to treat and heal skin conditions. Plasma skin regeneration technology uses energy delivered from plasma rather than light or radiofrequency, as compared to other skin regeneration techniques, and plasma ions are apparently able to penetrate the skin up to 4mm. It is predicted that this treatment will be used a lot more in the future, because long-lasting effects can be achieved in a single treatment, it is non-invasive and can be used close to the eyes and on eyelids, as well as on acne. Expect to see brands talking about these plasma-like effects in their products in the future.
See the Pen Aesthetics by ACCOR: http://www.pen-aesthetics.co.uk/ and Crystal Clear’s Plasma Lift https://www.crystalclear.co.uk/skinsystems/plasma-lift/