Come on, let's face it… If there's one thing you've heard about the skin for years, it's free radicals. They are presented as the pet peeves of aging and advanced decay.
And for good reason, aging is one of the consequences of the production of free radicals (among other factors of course). But do you know what it is? Are they really inevitable? Where do they come from ? Can cosmetics really do anything about it?
In this post, you will not be surprised to find that it is once again a question of balance. It's like everything in life. Yin, Yang, white, black… the middle way.
A free radical is also out of balance. That's why he does anything and why he never stops wanting to stabilize himself, even at the expense of others. And that is in fact what he is accused of.
However, free radicals are not inevitable. At least, we can act on their effects with a healthy lifestyle while giving them plenty of antioxidants as gestures of love.
We explain everything about their origin and how they work. You'll see, it's Santa Barbara in drama mode!
What are free radicals?
We start with a little reminder of physics and chemistry with atoms. The atom is the smallest unit of matter in existence. It is composed of a nucleus and electrons which gravitate around it.
The electrons farthest from the nucleus of the atom are caused to couple with other atoms to form a molecule by chemical bonds. Depending on the metabolic reactions of the body, certain atoms will yield, recover and share electrons. This is for example the case of the water molecule H 2 O, where an oxygen atom shares electrons with two hydrogen atoms. All these atoms therefore create a world of happy little couples and happy families.
A free radical is an atom or a molecule that wanders around with an electron that is left alone. This electron is a small bachelor in panic. Completely distressed at the idea of ending up alone, he will try to mate with anything and by all means.
He will adopt a completely deliberate behavior. In his madness, he will jump on anything that moves, even if it means destroying couples and families. The catch is that this free radical will share its instability and make its new bond unbalanced. We agree, it looks like a romantic movie that turns into a nightmare.
What are the issues related to free radicals?
In fact, if we stick to the capacity of our body to manage the process, there is not really a problem. Free radicals are produced in several ways, including through respiration.
Breathing in oxygen stimulates cellular respiration and metabolic functions. To produce energy and all other biological phenomena, the body and the cellular mitochondria will carry out oxidations. The body therefore creates free radicals on its own.
However, our body is a marvelous machine. As much as it manufactures unbalanced atoms, it produces enzymes necessary for their neutralization. This is the case of superoxide dismutase or glutathione peroxidase. Clearly, the body is able to produce its own antioxidants like a grown-up.
But then, where is the problem if everything is under control?
By creating unstable couples or bonds, the abandoned cells self-destruct and the new couples also die. Free radicals also have the unfortunate tendency to destroy the unsaturated lipids of cell membranes. Deprived of its first line of defence, the cell commits suicide by apoptosis. Cellular replication is then less efficient. This is the beginning of cellular ageing , sometimes premature.
And of course, the first place you will notice it is on your skin: fine lines and wrinkles, facial sagging, spots and marks, etc…
How to act against free radicals?
First, we will restore the prestige of the free radicals produced naturally by the body. These are nice. These free radicals even have a protective function that neutralizes viruses and microbes. And then they are very good indicators for the production of energy and the proper functioning of the metabolism. Let's not forget also that free radicals have a certain power in case of serious illnesses. Chemotherapy, which fights cancer, is none other than high doses of free radicals.
On the other hand, it is the excess that will create worries , and this excess is often the result of our own behavior. The free radical will then overuse the stocks of natural enzymes. This phenomenon is called oxidative stress . The body is bombarded with free radicals and can no longer neutralize them.
Sources of free radicals are:
- Metabolic diseases and all types of inflammation
- Tobacco, alcohol, pollution
- Intense sports practice
- Exposure to sunlight
- Stress and all forms of overwork
- Lack or excess of oxygen
- A diet too rich in sugars and bad fats
You now know the other major causes of free radical production. The good news is that many of them can be acted upon.
The other good news is that there is an additional solution: the antioxidant. Even if our body is able to produce it, it needs a boost. An antioxidant binds perfectly with the free radical. Together, they create a very stable, finally harmless little couple.
Antioxidants are known in the form of vitamins, minerals and trace elements. We are talking about vitamin C, vitamin E, precursors of vitamin A, zinc, manganese or copper. There is also the whole large family of polyphenols such as lutein or astaxanthin. The maritime pine extract from our Lift Pinaster range is one of them. Another is the oxyresveratrol in the Perfect Pisum line.
Detox Officinale or the bane of free radicals
The most powerful range in terms of antioxidant defense for the skin is Detox Officinale .
First, let's proudly remind you that all of our facial products contain our Immunox ® patent . Our patent is composed of fresh organic Birch Sap, whose antioxidant properties are well established. The Sap contains many of the nutrients mentioned above in its composition.
The Immunox® patent also includes concentrated extracts of organic Chaga . Imagine that its composition of antioxidants makes it the organism with the most in the world (it contains 25%). It also stimulates the enzymatic production of superoxidase dismutase discussed above. Just imagine the defense shield for your skin.
The Detox Officinale range is composed of Dandelion extracts rich in fructans which reduce inflammation and limit oxidation. Everything is supported by encapsulated Apple Phloretin whose major antioxidant actions fight against the effects of free radicals. These are nice molecules that want to couple with free radicals and then act against pollution and the deleterious effects of UV rays from the sun.
As you can never be too careful, we decided to set up two rituals to accompany you.
The Anti-Oxidant Detox Day Ritual and the Anti-Oxidant Detox Night Ritual each combine the Anti-Oxidant Detox Shield Botanical Serum to give the skin a new youth thanks to its anti-wrinkle action, and the Intense Detox Mask , to free the skin from pollutants.
In the day formula, we adapt the protection with the Multi-Defense Detox Cream which has an SPF30 . It is worn lightly, even under makeup. It is a perfect cream for the sunshine in the city.
For the night, we offer you a softer and more enveloping galenic with the Regenerating Detox Night Cream which takes advantage of nocturnal cell renewal to repair the damage caused during the day by free radicals and external aggressions.
Because at Saeve, we prefer beautiful romantic stories...