Science Based Skincare
5 January 2022
Do you know your AHA from your BHA? If you’re new to the world of science based skincare, don’t worry, we’ve got you… Here’s a little A-Z of some of allbeauty’s favourite scientific skincare terms, brands and ingredients and where you can find them.
Not to be confused with the synth-pop band famous for Take On Me… AHA stands for Alpha Hydroxy Acids. This is a group (or category) of acids that are used in skincare to help gently exfoliate the skin. They can also be used to tackle things such as fine lines and enlarged pores, as well as combating the signs of aging. They work to help generate evenly pigmented skin cells & improve cell turnover. AHAs include acid types which differ in strength such as Lactic, Malic and Glycolic. Need more info on where to start? Check out Skinfluencers such as Caroline Hirons for the full lowdown on what is likely to suit you – whatever stage of your life.
What does Algae have to do with science based skincare, you say? Well algae is just one of nature’s wonders that can be used as an extract in skincare. These extracts can be used to help fight against free radicals and are naturally high in antioxidants – they’re often used as thickening & water-binding agents or emollients. This ingredient is particularly close to allbeauty’s hearts as it features in the At1 Restore & Boost Night Cream, allbeauty’s luxury natural skincare range.
This hot skincare term which trended in 2021 actually refers to the packaging of supercharged serums. These little beauties have been around for quite some time – they feature ingredients which often target specific skin concerns. Shake, break and apply – no need to fuss over measurements, as you have everything you need measured out already in each ampoule.
This is an alternative to Retinol – Bakuchiol (pronounced buh-KOO-chee-all), it’s a plant extract that has been used in Ayurveda and Chinese traditional medicine for centuries to treat a variety of ailments. Like retinol, bakuchiol oils and serums enhance the skin by stimulating collagen production and reducing fine lines and wrinkles. Unlike retinol, bakuchiol can be used on even the most sensitive of skin types including by those who suffer from conditions like eczema, dermatitis, or psoriasis.
A cousin of AHA, Beta Hydroxy Acid (also known as Salicylic Acid) also work to exfoliate the skin, however the different types have a few key differences. Whilst AHAs are water soluble, BHAs are oil-soluble and key if you’re looking to reduce inflammation. The cleansing action of salicylic acid can reduce sebum production, leading to clearer skin – good for people prone to acne or blemishes
One of allbeauty’s all time favourite skincare brands, Dermalogica is a brand renowned for creating innovative skincare products, suitable for all skin types and concerns. Founded by a skincare therapist, their professional-grade skin care solutions are rooted in education and personalized skincare. What’s more – their products are also certified cruelty-free, gluten-free and vegan. You’ll also find this line stocked in allbeauty’s Guernsey salon and used by allbeauty’s team of trained beauty therapists.
Eau Thermale Avène
Eau Thermale Avène is a French brand, which takes the unique composition of Spring Water to deliver its soothing formulas. Restore comfort to sensitive skin with products that have proven their effectiveness – more than 150 scientific studies have attested to the soothing properties of this active ingredient. The French National Academy of Medicine has even recognised the characteristics of thermal water as being anti-irritant due to its optimal ratio between calcium and magnesium.
This acid is a key one to consider for the Winter months… especially as the amount of hyaluronic acid in our bodies reduces as we age, which can lead to visible signs of ageing like wrinkles and age spots. When choosing a hyaluronic acid serum, look out for products that contain an ingredient percentage between 0.25-2.5% for the best results.
With a tagline of Real Science, Real Claims, any feature on science based skincare would have to include the Instagram famous Indeed Labs. Featured in BYRDIE, Elle, Marie Claire & The Independent, the brand regularly shares insightful content on topics such as layering your skincare & how blue light can impact your skin. A brand that shares its scientific insight? Sign us up. They advise to apply your antioxidants (hello vitamin C and Retinol, before serums, followed by moisturisers or oils. Always finish by sealing with an SPF – their top tip is that sunscreen needs to remain at the skin’s surface in order to function properly.
A form of B3, this water soluble is an active ingredient across a huge range of serums and moisturisers. It can help oily skin, uneven skin tone and sensitive skin.
Founded by the dermatologist Dr Nicholas Perricone (he’s the MD mentioned in the brand name), Perricone MD has a wide range of supplements and cosmeceuticals. From iconic products such as the Cold Plasma + line and Vitamin C Ester Serums to makeup with skincare properties, such as the No Makeup Lipsticks (which had great reviews from India Knight of Sunday Times Style), this brand is definitely worth the investment.
Also known as Vitamin A1, Retinol is renowned for its star qualities of promoting collagen production and skin renewal. Retinol is also a great exfoliator and works by encouraging the release of old skin cells to reveal fresh skin beneath – however it’s not for everyone! If you have eczema, psoriasis or rosacea, your skin’s weakened moisture barrier will allow retinol to penetrate deeper than it should, which can worsen inflammation. This is where Bakuchiol (mentioned earlier) comes in as a handy alternative for those with sensitive skin.
And there you have it! Some of the science explained behind your favourite skincare buzz terms & brands. Which scientific skincare approach are you going to take with you into 2022? Discover all skincare ingredients here.