With the restricted use of many synthetic chemicals, “green” has become the development direction of cosmetics. People pay more and more attention to the naturalness of cosmetics, and the development of natural plant extracts that can be used in anti-aging cosmetics has become a trend. There is a wider space for the application of natural active ingredients such as anti-free radicals, antioxidants, anti-radiation, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory in cosmetics.
Skin aging and anti-aging cosmetics
Human skin is an organ that is prone to aging. With age, the skin’s aging characteristics also appear: increased wrinkles, loose skin, yellowing, radiance, reduced radiance and smoothness, thicker texture, increased hyperpigmentation or depigmentation.
It is generally believed that the causes of skin aging mainly include endogenous factors and exogenous factors.
Endogenous factors include:
Genetic factors, that is, the sequence of chromosomal telomerization reactions due to genetic inheritance will change with age; Hormone shortage, that is, hormone aging due to lack of hormones, such as estrogen deficiency, will reduce the function of the skin’s connective tissue and lead to various skin changes.
Exogenous factors include:
Pollution factors, that is, the growing air in the atmosphere and the pollution caused by various pollutants form a large number of free radicals, the attack of free radicals leads to the death of skin cells and rapid aging, such as suffocation of the skin, blocked pores, and the skin becomes fragile; Photoaging, that is, due to the accumulation of UVA/UVB rays, has some very harmful effects on the skin, such as dermal tissue disorders, thinning of the epidermis dermis connective tissue responsible for fine-tuning the skin. In addition, excessive UV exposure is also the main cause of premature aging symptoms of facial skin.
Anti-aging cosmetics are aimed at the characteristics and causes of aging skin. On the basis of moisturizing and sun protection, active nutrients are added to enhance skin nutrient absorption, and at the same time, further smooth the skin and achieve the purpose of delaying aging and removing wrinkles.
Application of natural plant extracts in anti-aging cosmetics
Since plant extracts have the advantages of being derived from natural plants and having less toxic and side effects, many substances have been widely used as active raw materials in the production of anti-aging cosmetics. Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) includes glycolic acid, lactic acid, citric acid, malic acid, derived from fruits such as lemon, apple, grape and more. AHA can make the skin surface smooth, delicate and soft, and has anti-wrinkle and anti-aging effects. Tremella has been used in cosmetics for a long time. It has become the most effective active addition in skin care cosmetics, which can promote skin regeneration or skin replacement.
Beta Hydfoxy Acid (BHA) is a substance extracted from natural plants such as willow bark, holly leaves, and birch bark. As a new generation of AHA, its fat-soluble nature makes it easier to combine with oil-rich skin surface than traditional water-soluble AHAs, reducing pores. In addition, BHA is gentle and effective, and can promote skin cell renewal for a long time. Due to the effective effects of AHA and BHA in anti-aging, some cosmetic companies have successively launched a wide variety of anti-aging cosmetics containing hydroxy acids.
Papaya Sulfhydryl Enzyme (PSE) is derived from natural fresh papaya fruit. It is an active factor with high biological activity. It can effectively remove superoxide free radicals and hydroxyl free radicals in the body and reduce the content of lipid peroxide in the skin, thereby preventing the aging of body cells and delaying the aging process of the skin.
Research progress of natural plant extracts
With the continuous expansion of the anti-aging cosmetic market and the advantages of plant extracts, scientists are constantly looking for new natural plant extracts with anti-aging effects. At present, a variety of substances with anti-aging effects have been found, and scientists have applied these substances to carry out preliminary research and development of anti-aging cosmetics.
Studies have found that bamboo leaf flavonoids have potent anti-free radical, antioxidant and anti-radiation activities and significant bacteriostatic and anti-inflammatory effects. In the dose range of 0.005%-0.050%, it can significantly promote the proliferation of skin cells and can significantly inhibit the synthesis of melanin; in the dose range of 0.0005%-0.005%, it can significantly reduce the production of MDA and improve the activity of SOD . In addition, bamboo leaf flavonoids have no irritation and allergic reaction to skin and mucous membranes. Therefore, bamboo leaf flavonoids have sufficient and necessary conditions to be used as an anti-aging skin care factor as a safe, efficient and economical phytochemical.
Scutellaria baicalensis extracts baicalein and baicalin also have good anti-aging effects. These two components have strong antioxidant activity, and their antioxidant activity is significantly higher than the commonly used food antioxidant BHT. Several studies have shown that baicalein and baicalin can reduce the production of free radicals or effectively scavenge already generated free radicals, and effectively slow down skin aging and wrinkles. Scutellaria baicalensis extract has the characteristics of strong ultraviolet absorption ability and wide absorption range, supplemented with ingredients such as vitamin E and evening primrose oil, which can promote skin metabolism, prevent skin dryness, and delay skin aging to prepare a sunscreen nutrition cream with The effect of making pigmentation and melasma disappear.
The flavonoids contained in Ginkgo biloba extract are powerful oxygen free radical scavengers, which can protect skin cells from excessive oxidation of oxygen free radicals, thereby prolonging the lifespan of skin cells and enhancing their anti-aging ability. In addition, the lactones in Ginkgo biloba extract can accelerate metabolism, improve blood circulation, and enhance cell vitality.
Rutin is a flavonoid extracted from Sophora japonica, which has anti-radiation, antioxidant and other effects. Rutin obviously scavenges the reactive oxygen radicals produced by cells, and the scavenging rate of reactive oxygen radicals O2 is as high as 78.1%, which is far greater than the 12.7% scavenging rate of vitamin E, and the scavenging effect on OH is also greater than that of vitamin E.
The application of natural plant extracts has brought new vitality to the anti-aging cosmetic industry. Its unique superiority is favored by consumers. As people pay more attention to the naturalness of cosmetics, the development of natural plant extracts that can be used in anti-aging cosmetics will flourish.