Have you ever looked at an ingredient deck and wondered which ingredients were actually doing something for your skin? It can be tricky in the skincare world because in order to make all those active ingredients come together into a formula that will actually blend and mix and glide over your skin smoothly and not go rancid, certain stabilizers and (natural!) preservatives are necessary. But that doesn’t mean that a bottle full of unnecessary fillers is what you should be getting. What it does mean is that a certain amount of attention is needed in order to make sure that your anti aging skincare products are mostly actives and minimal “other” ingredients, and not the other way around.
A good rule of thumb is if you don’t know what an ingredient is, then it has the potential to not be an active. For example, you probably know what green tea is, so if you see green tea extract on an ingredient label, you know it’s there as an antioxidant. Similarly, pumpkin or pineapple enzymes are both ingredients derived from plants that you probably know about already. This applies to most botanical ingredients since they are where most of the natural anti aging skincare world gets their actives from in one form or another.
In some cases, there may be a special ingredient that you don’t know about that is a natural active, but in more specialized form. Amino acids are a good example of this. They are technically a natural ingredient and are most definitely a valuable anti aging skincare active, but because each amino acid has its own name, like L-proline, you may not recognize it as a natural ingredient. The same goes for other substances like plant stem cells or botanical hyaluronic acid, which are typically named as their scientific names first. The good news? The ingredient label should have the more common name in parenthesis, making your job a whole lot easier!
To put it plainly, you want as many active ingredients in your skincare as possible! The more active ingredients, the more effective your skincare will be, the better your skin will look and the more worth while your money and time will have been spent. The last thing you want is to be using an anti aging skincare product that doesn’t work, or doesn’t work well enough, because it has so many fillers and diluted or poor quality actives.