We’ve been bred and buttered on topical skincare. Cleansing is as much a part of most people’s daily routine as brushing their teeth and people are willing to put time into it because of this.
We KNOW the benefits of cleansing; it removes all traces of makeup, oils and debris from our skin and sometimes delivers active ingredients that can improve our skin.
Skincare supplements are a new player in the game and until Meghan Markle herself says “I take skincare supplements”, people are sceptics no matter what we say to them. I’m here to tell you that regardless of how thorough your topical skincare routine is, if you’re not feeding your skin from the inside, you’re missing out.
Skincare supplements come in capsule, liquid or powder form and truly they can be made up of anything. Some brands believe in keeping their supplements to one or two vitamins or nutrients whereas some believe in the kitchen sink approach. Personally, I adore both approaches because it means that we can offer our clients at The Skin Nerd what they need and what they want.
Why use skincare supplements
It’s time for my famed (to moiself, anyway) sunflower analogy. We all love to look at the top of the sunflower with beautiful, healthy yellow petals. It’s appealing and vibrant. When you touch the top of the flower, it’s like touching the surface of the skin.
However, when you’re planting the sunflower and hoping that it will be healthy and look fantastic, you take time to consider the soil you’re planting it in and ensure there are plenty of nutrients in it.
You water around the root of the sunflower because you know it needs to be hydrated from the inside out. Imagine if you saw me trying to feed the sunflower just by watering the petals – you’d think there wasn’t much hope that the flower would grow to be healthy.
Taking skincare supplements is feeding your skin from the roots, from the dermis upwards aka the lowest layer of the skin that can’t be directly reached by topical skincare. Skincare supplements feed the skin from within.
Types of skincare supplements
You can find a supplement for anything out there but the reason to choose skincare supplements specifically is that they’re optimised to help the skin through how they’re delivered into the body and the dosage within them.
Key skin supplements
When it comes to the skincare supplement you should be taking, in the end, it comes down to your particular skin concerns. Realistically, you could be taking an endless amount of supplements but your wallet would feel it and you’d nearly need to book time out of your day to get them all into you.
problems with their skin’s barrier, ie. those prone to over-exfoliating, those with eczema, those with naturally dry skin
Vitamin A – vitamin A is the king of skincare ingredients, both topically (you must have heard of retinol) and internally, as it is essential for the function of skin cells and in the end, they’re what determine what your skin looks and behaves like
Vitamin C – we don’t make vitamin C ourselves so it’s super important that we make sure we’re getting enough as it aids in the strength of blood vessels (no more broken capillaries), preventing pigmentation and making collagen
Probiotics – hand on heart, everyone should be taking probiotic supplements and the drinkable supermarket ones are essentially more sugar than good strains of bacteria
Do supplements not just make “expensive wee”?
Ah, yes, the expensive wee argument. I’m too accustomed to it by now. The reason that we need to supplement is because when it comes to key skin nutrients such as vitamin A, omegas and vitamin C, we simply don’t get enough through diet to get the optimal daily amount even though we may hit the recommended daily allowance (which aim is to stop us from getting scurvy).
Hate to break it to you but even if you’re eating a tank worth of fish for your omegas per week, pure liver twice a week for your vitamin A and glugging back freshly squeezed orange juice all day long, plenty of things have an effect on how we absorb nutrients.
Poor gut bacteria, alcohol, caffeine and smoking (or vaping… any form of tobacco product) can affect how you absorb nutrients. Good quality supplements are designed to actually get to where they need to go without being damaged or depleted. You only excrete out that which you can’t use. Supplements ensure that you have the maximum amount you can use in the first place!
Collagen supplements – are they worth it?
Many say that our body can’t do a lot with the collagen we get from collagen supplements. On the contrary, when we ingest (hydrolysed) collagen, it’s believed that it tricks the rest of the body to think it should be trying to heal and so it prompts the skin to create more collagen. That’s the only type of bare-faced trickery I abide by!
The body needs more than this to make collagen anyway. I think it’s much more worth it to take a well-rounded collagen anti-ageing supplement, like IMAGE Skincare’s Yana Collagen Shot, which contains hydrolysed collagen, an antioxidant complex, vitamin C and more.
Are you feeling tempted to hop on the supplement bandwagon? Do it! ZENii is a newer skincare supplement brand that I’ve come across recently and it’s fabulous. We stock it on The Skin Nerd store – check out our website for details on joining the Nerd Network!
Jennifer Rock is the founder of The Skin Nerd online skin consultancy and online cosmeceutical skincare store. If you’re interested in having a consultation with one of her expert Nerdettes, click here for more information.