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Beauty People: Appliance Of Science; The beauty industry is full of hi-tech innovations which are designed to help you look and feel terrific. Here YVE LYONS reveals the scientific formulas - and explains what they can do for you...

Anti-oxidants

Found in skincare, make-up and sun products

This ingredient fights against free radicals which are caused by over- exposure to the sun, pollution and cigarette smoke. Although a certain amount of free radicals in the body is normal because they help fight some harmful bacteria, many of them tear apart healthy cells and attack the skin's collagen, causing skin to dull and age. Vitamins A, C and E are all anti-oxidants and kill off free radicals.

Ceramides

Found in skin creams and shampoos

Ceramides are fatty substances made naturally in the body. They help keep skin cells functioning but die out through age or over-exposure to sunlight. Synthetic ceramides work as a barrier for the skin and replace moisture loss.

Collagen and elastin

Found in skincare products

These provide the skin's natural elasticity. The production of collagen slows down with age - causing sagging skin and bags under the eyes. Products containing these ingredients claim to help protect against the breakdown of the skin's elasticity.

Retinol

Found in skincare and hand creams

Retinol is naturally derived from Vitamin A. It claims to reduce fine lines, lighten age spots, improve firmness and even-out skin pigmentation. It should be used with a sunscreen in the daytime as Vitamin A products are extremely sensitive to ultraviolet light.

AHAs

Found in skincare products

Alpha-hydroxy acids, otherwise known as fruit acids, are made from natural ingredients such as grapes, apples and olives. Beta-hydroxy acids are found in willow bark. Both encourage skin to produce new cells and loosen dead cells from the surface, resulting in a younger-looking complexion.

Recent research indicates that these products could make users extra- sensitive to UVAs in sunlight and do more damage in the long-term. BHAs are slightly better for you, as they are less harsh.

Liposomes

Found in skincare capsules

These are hi-tech sacs full of nutrients like vitamin E which sink in deeper than other moisturisers and the result is intensively moisturised skin. 21st Century liposomes are called nanospheres.

Keratin

Found in hair conditioner

Keratin is a protein which makes up your hair follicles. When lying flat, layers of keratin reflect light, making your hair look shiny, as well as smoother and easier to comb.

Enzymes

Found in face scrubs and masks

Enzymes - natural ingredients in papaya and pineapples - are used as an exfoliant. They work a bit like AHAs but are less harsh.

Humecants

Found in moisturisers and face sprays

Humecants attract moisture from the air and deliver it to the surface of the skin - ideal for dry skin.

Panthenol/Pro-vitamin B5

Found in moisturisers and hair products

This is a by-product of Vitamin B which is non-irritating, and highly moisturising and conditioning.

Silicones

Found in foundations and hair serums

Silicones are tiny droplets of pigments which lock into your skin or hair to add silkiness and leave a natural long-lasting finish.
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Title Annotation:Features
Author:Lyons, Yve
Publication:The People (London, England)
Date:Sep 17, 2000
Words:475
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