Tag Archives: Skin Care Ingredient

Cocunut Oil and the Fountain of Youth

Coconut oil is a natural oil derived by pressing the tough white “meat” of the palm coconut, which produces as thick, transparent liquid oil that solidifies at room temperature into a hard white greasy mass. Coconut oil is greatly extolled as an anti-aging “superfood” that’s good for your heart, skin, and hair, a natural anti-ager, and great to consume just about as much as you want of with only positive effects.

Of course, as with many foods or substances of near-legendary hype status, the truth is a bit more mixed than that. Let’s dive into some of the most commonly proclaimed virtues of coconut oil and separate fact from fiction.

Coconut oil

Coconut Oil: “It’s a Healthy Fat, So Eat Up!”
About 84% of coconut oil’s calories are from saturated fat (compared to olive oil’s 14% and butter’s 63%), but it is frequently claimed that high quantities of coconut oil are fine, or even good, because they contain “good” fats. Specifically, coconut oil is made up primarily of medium-chain triglycerides (aka MCTs). MCTs are supposedly better than the more common longer-chain lipids, which are found in large quantities in vegetable oil, dairy, and animal fats.

There are studies that point to coconut oil providing an increased level of HDL cholesterol, which is considered the “good” kind of cholesterol because it helps remove plaque from your arteries. That said, coconut oil consumption also increases LDL cholesterol, aka the “bad” kind, which can cause plaque buildup in your arteries. Granted, small amounts of even “bad” cholesterol are necessary for survival because many essential hormones are synthesized from cholesterol (which is why “zero cholesterol” diets are a terrible idea, and can be dangerous, while low cholesterol diets are more sensible), but you don’t need more than just a little. In any case, the fact that coconut oil increases “good” cholesterol is countered by the fact that it also increases the “bad” kind, meaning it’s far from the freebie food that you can just eat however much you want of, and should be consumed in as much moderation as any other food high in saturated fat (in other words, go ahead and add a tablespoon to your coffee if you like the taste and the way it feels, but that’s about where you should stop on an average day).

Coconut oil does contain antioxidants, and for this reason is often said to be an anti-aging superfood that does everything from slow down wrinkling of the skin to aiding with memory issues arising from Alzheimer’s. While it does have beneficial antioxidants, it’s antioxidant count is fairly low, and you’d be better off with high-antioxidant fruits, vegetables, and grains.

Skin and Hair
So coconut oil may not be the magical superfood it’s hyped up to be, but what about applications to skin and hair care?

This one actually has a fair bit of truth to it. While coconut oil alone shouldn’t replace a solid hair or skincare routine, a small dab of it on your face on top of your moisturizer can be a great help moisturizing, and a little bit rubbed into your hair can help prevent damage, too. Just don’t overdo it; oil is still oil, and can cause breakouts or greasy looking hair/skin if you use way too much.

Why Retinol is so Important for Anti-Aging

Retinol, while not a new skincare ingredient, is everywhere and pops up in products from potent antioxidant serums to foundations. The reason that retinol is everywhere? Because it works. Retinol is an incredibly effective skincare ingredient that fights the signs of aging and encourages skin to act in a younger, healthier way. Find out just what retinol is and why it is so important for anti-aging below.

Vitamin A chemical formula

What is Retinol?
Retinol is just another name for vitamin A and it can be broken down into more potent compounds that are referred to as retinoids. “Retinol is an extremely effective cell-communicating ingredient, which means it can literally connect to almost any skin cell and tell it to behave like a healthy, younger skin cell,” explains skincare expert Paula Begoun. Retinol is somewhat of an umbrella term and the vitamin A molecule is broken down into many derivatives of vitamin A that are known as retinoids. In a paper published on PubMed Central, a service of the US National Library of Medicine, the authors state that “retinoids are very well known to influence a variety of cellular processes, such as cellular growth and differentiation, cell surface alterations and immune modulation.” It is the influence that retinol and retinol derivatives have at the cellular level that are responsible for the immense anti-aging benefits of these ingredients.

How Does Retinol Counteract Aging?
“Retinol is an antioxidant, and thus can help interrupt the free-radical damage process that cause skin to look and act older. This action helps prevent wrinkling and increases collagen production,” says Begoun. In order to actually influence cell behavior, retinol has to undergo a process of breakdown and conversion. “Before retinol can successfully go to work in skin, it must be converted into it’s active form – all-trans retinoic acid. Once retinol has been applied to skin, enzymes in the skin break it down into all-trans retinoic acid, which then goes on to help regulate cell function,” notes Begoun.

As you age, the effects of sun damage become more visible and apparent in the forms of discoloration or sun spots, fine lines and wrinkles and larger pores. Retinol, when converted to retinoic acid, is able to influence cells that fight against these signs of aging. Although retinol can’t reduce large pores caused by genetics, it is able to decrease pore size that occurs as a result of sun damage. In addition, retinol promotes an increase in substances that enhance and improve the skin’s structural elements, meaning your skin is strengthened, and retinol is also helpful at stimulating collagen production which reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Retinol is available in a variety of forms and can be found in cosmetic products that are readily available. There are also prescription strength retinol products that are used both for acne and aging. Before beginning a retinol regime, it’s important to know that retinol can cause sensitivity and irritation and it often takes some time before your skin gets used to this ingredient. Consulting with a dermatologist or doctor is a great way to know what concentration of retinol would be most beneficial. While there is no single ingredient that magically solves aging concerns, when retinol is used with other quality ingredients and products, it is an incredibly effective ingredient that helps skin look and act younger.

What Vitamin C Does for Skin – Vine Vera Reviews

Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin. This means that the vitamin dissolves in water, so you need to be sure that you are receiving a continuous supply of vitamin C. We previously posted on foods that will help you achieve your daily recommended amount of vitamin C, but you can also get the benefits of vitamin C through topical application. Not sure why you would want to apply vitamin C to your skin? Check out the information below to learn what vitamin C can do for your skin.

Fruits rich in Vitamin C

Vitamin C
There are several forms of vitamin C that are used in skin care products. In any form vitamin C is highly beneficial providing a wide variety of benefits. Topical application of vitamin C can:

  • Minimize the appearance of brown spots and other aging marks such as spots from sun damage
  • Increase your body’s collagen production
  • Lessen the amount of inflammation and irritation in your skin
  • Decrease the appearance marks due to acne and breakout
  • Increases the skin’s natural healing response
  • Enhance sunscreen effectiveness and increase your natural UV protection

Chemical formula of ascorbic acid.

Types of Vitamin C
While some product packaging will proclaim that vitamin C is an ingredient, others may use different terms to refer to the various forms of vitamin c. The most frequently used form of vitamin C in skin care is ascorbic acid. This is because ascorbic acid is backed by proper research which states that any type of vitamin C can benefit for skin.

Ascorbic acid is also known as L-ascorbic acid and when properly formulated, the ingredient can help in creating firmer and younger skin, while removing post-acne marks and the signs of sun damage. This substance can be used either on its own or with other antioxidant ingredients. One of the greatest pairings in skin care is the combination of vitamins C and A.

Though ascorbic acid is the most commonly used ingredient in skin care, there are other types that you may want to look for on product labels. The other derivatives of vitamin C in skin care are:

  • Ascorbyl palmitate
  • Magnesium ascorbyl phosphate
  • Tetrahexldecyl ascorbate
  • Sodium ascorbyl phosphate
  • Retinyl ascorbate

All of these forms of vitamin C also provide protection against free-radical damage, though the above derivatives are more powerful when combined with other ingredients such as retinol (vitamin A) or niacinamide (vitamin B). A combination of other ingredients and antioxidants will benefit all forms of vitamin C and help them to be as beneficial as possible.

Vitamin C can be achieved through both diet and skin care products. Vitamin C is a superstar antioxidant that provides a multitude of benefits for your skin, helping it look younger, firmer and more even. A concentration as low as .06% vitamin C in a skin care product can provide excellent benefits, while a concentration of 15 to 25% results in maximum fading of sun damage, other signs of aging and post-acne marks. Be sure to incorporate a skin care product with vitamin C into your skin care routine to improve your healthy collagen levels, resulting in diminished signs of aging and healthier skin overall.

Most Important Skin Care Ingredients – Vine Vera Reviews

You take care of your job, your kids, your significant other and tons of other obligations. With all that you do it can be incredibly difficult to find the time to take care of yourself and your skin. Some nights you may not even have enough energy to wash your face. Vine Vera believes that if you choose beauty and skin care products that contain certain ingredients, you can easily take care of your skin. These ingredients help you achieve maximum beauty benefits with minimal effort.

The formula of Vitamin B3 on a blackboard.

Niacinamide has several names by which it is called. Most products use the word niacinamide on the label, though this ingredient is also known at vitamin B3 and nicotinic acid. Niacinamide is an important skin care ingredient that communicates with your cells. This beneficial skin care ingredient has multiple benefits for your skin. It can improve skin’s elasticity, revive your skin tone, even out your skin texture, lighten discoloration and increase the skin’s barrier function. Niacinamide increases the levels of ceramide and fatty acids in your skin, which helps your skin to retain water. In addition to all of these benefits from this one ingredient, current research is being conducted to test whether niacinamide can help lessen acne.

Woman looking at her bottle of sunscreen.

Titanium Dioxide
Chances are you now own at least one product that already contains titanium dioxide. Titanium dioxide is one of the most popular minerals used for sun protection. Before titanium dioxide goes into skin care products and cosmetics, it is purified to remove contaminants such as iron and lead. Often, you will find that titanium dioxide is present in mineral sunscreens along with zinc oxide. Sun protection factor (SPF) is an often skipped but crucial step in any beauty routine. You should use sunscreen, or products containing sunscreen such as your facial moisturizer, 365 days of the year. Ideally, you would apply products containing titanium dioxide on your body as well. It goes without saying that titanium dioxide is one of the best skin care ingredients as it protects your skin from UV damage, which can result in sun spots, premature aging and skin cancer.

Hand drawing the chemical formula of hyaluronic acid.

Hyaluronic Acid
We’ve already discussed this essential skin care ingredient but it bears repeating. Applied topically, hyaluronic acid smooths and softens your skin by creating a moisture barrier. Because hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring substance in your body, it is less likely to be rejected as a foreign substance. Hyaluronic acid is an excellent ingredient in beauty products such as moisturizers and eye creams. This ingredient is also the top choice among dermatologists and plastic surgeons as a wrinkle filler. Hyaluronic acid is injected into the skin and plumps fine lines and wrinkles.

Woman enjoying a milk bath.

Alpha hydroxy and beta hydroxy acids are organic acids that work to exfoliate your skin. AHAs differ as skin ingredients. The most popular AHAs are glycolic acid, lactic acid and malic acids. BHA for beauty purposes refers exclusively to salicylic acid. Both of these organic acids work as gentle exfoliants on your skin. AHAs are water soluble, making it great for individuals with normal to dry skin while BHA is oil soluble which can help with oil production and acne.

Vitamin icons circulating around a woman's head

Retinol is an active form of vitamin A. Retinol helps skin increase the production of both collagen and hyaluronic acid, both of which leave the skin supple and smooth feeling. Additionally, retinol encourages new, young skin cells to turnover and replace dead, unhealthy skin cells. Retinol also contains exfoliating properties. In addition to all of this, retinol also improves the firmness of your skin, treats acne, reverses damage from the sun and environment and decreases hyperpigmentation, dark under eye circles, fine lines and wrinkles.

The best thing about these skin care ingredients is that they are often combined in products. This means that with one face cream you will get all of the benefits of each ingredient, without having to slather on a ton of product or taking a long time to get ready in the morning.

The Science Behind Hyaluronic Acid – Vine Vera Reviews

If you are a connoisseur of skin care and cosmetics, it is likely that you have heard about the new miracle that is hyaluronic acid. Saying that hyaluronic acid is new is not true, it is a naturally occurring element in your body. However, the benefits of hyaluronic acid are becoming apparent in terms of healthier, smoother and more hydrated skin. These claims have quite a large amount research and study that prove them to be true. In order to fully understand how hyaluronic acid can benefit you and your skin, Vine Vera examines the science behind hyaluronic acid below.

The chemical formula of hyaluronic acid on a tablet.

What is Hyaluronic Acid?
Hyaluronic acid, at a molecular level, is a glucosaminoglycan, also known as a polysaccharide. Essentially, this means that hyaluronic acid is a long chain of linked sugar molecules. Hyaluronic acid is naturally occurring in the body and at a cellular level, it contributes to processes such as tissue repair, hydrodynamics and cell surface interactions. This polysaccharide is important to numerous areas of the body such as the skin, cartilage and neural tissue. Hyaluronic acid supplies synovial, a necessity to proper and healthy joint lubrication. Other essential functions that require hyaluronic acid include delivering nutrients to cells while taking away harmful toxins.

Hyaluronic Acid in Skin Care/Cosmetics
No matter what beauty product you need, chances are you will find one that contains hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is found in everything from moisturizers to foundations. It is also used as a dermal filler to smooth out wrinkles and plump up the skin. Hyaluronic acid injections are like any other injectable cosmetic procedure. Our skin needs to replenish it’s stores of hyaluronic acid, so one injection is not the end. You will need ongoing treatments to maintain results.

In cosmetics, such as foundation and skin care, such as face creams, hyaluronic acid is mainly described as an agent that provides hydration that your skin needs. With it’s moisturizing properties, hyaluronic acid gives the appearance of smoother skin and more even texture. Additionally, because it is such a great hydration agent, it increases your skin’s natural radiance so your skin has a perfect “lit from within” glow.

The chemical formula of hyaluronic acid on a blackboard.

Other Benefits
Vine Vera Cosmetics came across new research which suggests that the benefits of hyaluronic acid are more than simply helping skin look, and feel, better. There is research that shows hyaluronic acid is actually able to heal wounds more quickly. Additionally, while hyaluronic is healing new wounds, it also improves the appearance of old scars.

There is also research that claims hyaluronic acid is an effective treatment for painful conditions such as osteoporosis and rheumatoid arthritis. In one study, 80% of participants had significant relief from symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis for an entire year after the initial hyaluronic acid injection.

If you want to provide maximum impact, you can use a hyaluronic acid serum to smooth and hydrate your skin. If you don’t want to bother with an additional skin care step in the morning or before bed, look for moisturizers that list hyaluronic acid as an ingredient. Hyaluronic acid is especially beneficial in eye creams, as it does help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, giving you a younger, more awake look.

Crushed Pearl: New Beauty Must Have? Vine Vera Reviews

Mirror showing the reflection of a pearl necklace with a candle in the backdrop.

Beauty trends come and go but one thing that remains constant in the world of beauty is a radiant, glowing complexion. Recently beauty experts, vloggers and regular women have been obsessed with capturing a dewy, glowy look. Skin care is important to achieving the complexion you want and if you find your skin is dull and lacking luster, you can always fake it with a highlighter. So what products are available to achieve the luminous look? One beauty ingredient that is getting rave reviews in both skin care and cosmetics is crushed pearl. Vine Vera shows you just how important crushed pearl could be in your skin care regimen.

Even though crushed pearl is being touted as the most luminous ingredient currently, crushed pearl actually has a well documented history where beauty is concerned. The only Chinese Empress in history, Wu Ze Tian, not only infused crushed pearl into her beauty cream, she also ingested it to receive more beauty benefits. Crushed pearl was also used for medicinal purposes treating eye diseases and help prevent heart attacks.

In the 1800s a white complexion was the desirable look among European women. The optimal way to achieve this was with pearl powder. Europeans used several types of pearls, though crushing real pearls produced the best effects. However, this was an expensive option so often mother of pearl was crushed and used on the skin.

Benefits of Crushed Pearl
Modern science suggests that crushed pearl helps your skin regenerate collagen faster and to speed up healing of problems such as skin redness, rash, wounds and burns. Just as with real pearls there are different grades and price points for the skin care. Crushed pearl in skin care is rich in amino acids and minerals that are incredibly hydrating for your skin. Crushed pearl also gives an even complexion, supple looking skin and adds natural radiance to tired, dull skin.

Crushed Pearl Beauty Products
Unlike artificial glitter that is used in some highlight powders, crushed pearl gives a more natural highlight that looks as if you have a glow from within. If you aren’t comfortable with the thought of using a highlighter on an everyday basis, consider beginning your makeup routine with a pearl infused primer.

Masks are an indulgence that can improve your skin’s texture and appearance. There are some amazing masks that use crushed pearl to brighten your skin. If you prefer DIY skin care, you can purchase crushed pearl powder on its own. Add one gram of pearl powder to a bit of olive or coconut oil and mix into a paste. Apply the paste to your face and leave it on for 30 minutes before washing your face with warm water. If you find you don’t have much time to let a mask sit on your skin, choose a skin care routine rich in crushed pearl.

Crushed pearl is available in many forms and at many price points. If you want radiant, luminous and even skin, try crushed pearl for yourself and enjoy all of the benefits it has to offer.

Five Best Botanical Extracts for Your Skin – Vine Vera Reviews

Beautiful woman in a flower garden.

Botanicals have always ranked among the top skin care ingredients ever since the time humans began to become conscious about their skin and their looks. Despite being used in skin care for centuries, many of them have lost out in terms of popularity in front of the modern skin ingredients. That being said, these botanicals are no less effective than any of the trendy ingredients. In fact, in many cases, these botanicals are known to offer better solutions. Vine Vera tries to examine some of the best botanical extracts for your skin. These extracts might not immediately ring a bell, but you can be rest assured that these botanicals shall offer a wide range of beauty benefits to your skin.

Marigold Extract (Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract)
Not all types of marigolds offer skin benefits. The ones usually found in your gardens are purely ornamental in nature. The marigolds that do offer skin benefits belong to the calendula variety. These flowers have been used for centuries in the world of skin care. The biggest advantage of adding marigold extract into your skin care routine is that it delivers a number of antioxidant carotenoids that protect your skin from free radical damage. It has also been attributed to effective wound healing, cancer protection and reducing inflammation in the skin. People with dry and sensitive skin should particularly look at adding marigold extracts into their skin care regimen.

Found In: The Vine Vera Resveratrol Vitamin C Cleanser uses marigold extract as an important ingredient in its formulation. This cleanser always leaves the skin looking radiant, refreshed and beautiful.

Calendula flower extract in a glass jug

Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract
This wondrous herb has been proven to offer repairing and anti-inflammatory properties to the skin. It is famous for its anti-septic, anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal and antibacterial properties and is also known to be hypoallergenic in nature. These unique properties give it the ability to neutralize the skin irritants and help out with a wide range of skin functions. Regular use of chamomilla recutita flower extract also lets you diminish the signs of photo-aging.  Finally, matricaria extract offers analgesic properties to your skin. This lets you relieve yourself of pain, without causing anesthesia.

Found In: The Vine Vera Resveratrol Pinot Noir Phyto-Silk makes use of chamomilla recutita flower extract to give you a deeply cleansed sensation. This mask targets the toxins and pollutants that get stuck to your skin and helps the skin to get rid of impurities.

Lavender Extract (Lavender Stoechas Extract)
Lavender extract is quite similar to chamomile in its application. It is particularly famous for its wound healing, anti-bacterial and anti-septic properties. It also works wonders in stimulating cellular growth and soothing irritation. Lavender extract is an ideal ingredient for anyone suffering from acne. The antioxidant properties further help out with anti-aging and younger looking skin.

Found In: Lavender extract can be found in the Vine Vera Resveratrol Malbec DNA Biology Emulsion, a set of beauty capsules that let you discover a smoother and younger look. Adding the product to your regular skin care regimen lets you reveal a smoother skin surface and a plumped up appearance.

Woman holding an aloe plant.

Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Extract
Aloe vera is used in all sorts of applications, but its most remarkable results can be seen in the field of skin care. Aloe vera has been used as a skin ingredient ever since the Great Egyptian Civilization, and its wonders are well known to people all over the world. The biggest advantage of adding aloe vera into your skin care regimen is that it is one of the best treatments against sunburns and offers your skin some much needed UV protection. This doesn’t mean that one can skip out on the sunscreen, but it does offer some added protection against the damaging rays of the sun. Aloe vera is also known to be one of the best anti-inflammatory ingredients on the planet that saves and relieves the skin from inflammation. Finally, this ingredient is very effective in boosting the production of collagen, a compound that is responsible for our younger and flawless looks.

Found In: The Vine Vera Resveratrol Age Defying Eye Serum uses aloe barbadensis leaf extract to give the eye area a younger look. It diminishes the appearance of wrinkles and lines and also leaves you with a non-greasy finish. 

Bearberry Extract (Arctostaphylos Uva Ursi Leaf Extract)
Bearberry extracts are commonly used in skin care products all over the world. Their popularity soared through the roof when Dr. Oz revealed bearberry extract as an ingredient that helped to prevent the common signs of aging such as age spots in the year 2014. The biggest advantage of adding bearberry extract into your skin care routine is that it gives you anti-bacterial and antioxidant properties. The extract ranks among the top free radical scavenging ingredients and it might also offer skin lightening properties to make the skin look brighter and lighter.

Found In: The Vine Vera Resveratrol Zinfandel Radiance Cream uses bearberry extract in its product formulation. This unique formula diminishes the appearance of aging and leaves the skin with a more even look. The Resveratrol Zinfandel Radiance Cream is particularly useful in reducing the appearance of age spots.