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Common Skin Care & Cosmetic Ingredients:

Acetyl Hexapeptide-3: Argireline is the trade name. Synthetically produced, it is a peptide made of amino acids. It can help reduce the overall appearance of deep wrinkles.

Algae: A simple celled organism. Commonly derived from seaweed and other times harvested in ponds, algae are touted as a moisturizer. It is rich in minerals and therefore believed to contain anti-oxidants that are revitalizing to the skin. Some algae will shrink as they dry on the skin, providing a temporary tightening effect.

Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHA): A common and well known chemical exfoliator that helps loosen the dry rough skin cells to reveal softer, smooth looking skin. It has been used for many years, and is now offered in a milder formulation in beauty products. It reveals, through chemical exfoliation, a new layer of skin by helping increasing the cell turnover of the dead, dry layer. It is used to reduce the look of wrinkling, roughness and skin discoloration. Mainly available in facial and body creams, it's also found in some cosmetic preparations.
It is recommended to use sunscreen with at least a 15 SPF while using such products since they tend to increase sun sensitivity. Wear a hat for additional protection and protective clothing if you are using an AHA based product. It is also recommended to conduct a sensitivity patch test before using a product for the first time. As with any product, discontinue use if any irritation or adverse reaction occurs.

Aloe (Aloe Barbadensis): The aloe plant that is used in topical preparations is one of 300 species of aloes and is indigenous to South Africa. Known for its skin smoothing and rejuvenating properties, Aloe Vera has almost the same pH as the skin. References of aloe can be found in the Bible, as well as other ancient texts. According to ancient records and data, it has been used for at least 3,000 years.

Alpha-Lipoic Acid: A fairly recent discovery of the mid-20th century (1951), Alpha-Lipoic acid is part of the B complex family. The body makes up its own lipoic acid, but most is derived from food sources. Its most unique property is that it was found to be fat and water soluble. This unique quality makes it more effective in its antioxidant qualities since it can help provide free radical protection in both the watery (aqueous) and oily (lipid) part of cells. This two-fold nature had earned it the title of "ideal" or "universal" anti-oxidant. It may also have the capability of regenerating other anti-oxidants such as Vitamins C and E.

Argan Oil: The amazing Argan oil is a high quality, natural oil derived from Moroccan Argan trees. Packed with vitamin E and fatty acids, the oil is rare due to its specific origin and growing area and is praised for its links to improvement in skin texture, tone and balanced hydration.

Bentonite Clay: Used in spas around the world as a soothing, rejuvenating facial mask, this clay is used to absorb oil and impurities, and help skin feel soft and smooth. Found all over the world, particularly in the US and Canada, this clay was initially a deposit of prehistoric volcanic ash. Large mines are in California, Wyoming and Montana. Most quarries are between 100 and several thousand feet deep. Cleopatra was reported to use clay from the Nile in her daily beauty ritual.

Buriti Oil: Buriti Oil (pronounced bu-REE-chee) originates from the Buriti tree, a palm tree that grows in and near swamps and other wet areas in tropical South America. Known as the "Tree of Life" which is the literal translation of Buriti, its nearly perfectly shaped, almost artificial looking fruit has edible, yellow flesh with a high vitamin C content. The sweet fruit is used to make beverages, preserves and ice cream. Buriti oil is cold-pressed from the pulp and is high in vitamin A with soothing qualities that is believed to be used as relief from burns. Recently Buriti oil has made its way into the mainstream cosmetic and skin care market and is highly prized for the essential fatty acids and emollients it contains.

Coenzyme Q10: Also known as Ubiquinone, it derives from the same root word as 'ubiquitous,' meaning "found everywhere." Aptly named, CO Q10 is found in every cell of your body, and levels are reported to decrease with age. It is considered an antioxidant nutrient and has been found to help offer protection from free radicals.

Copper Peptide: Helps support the skin's own renewal process with rejuvenation.

DMAE: Dimethylaminoethanol, a relative newcomer on the beauty scene, promotes the look of skin firmness. Mostly found in anti-aging lotions and creams, it can help improve overall tone of the skin while encouraging the look of elasticity.

Papaya Enzyme: Derived from the fruit Carica papapya. It contains the enzyme papain and helps dissolve the proteins in dead skin on the surface through the process of digestion. The exfoliation process exposes a newer, younger layer of skin.
It is recommended to use sunscreen with at least a 15 SPF while using such products since they tend to increase sun sensitivity. Wear a hat for additional protection and protective clothing if you are using an enzyme based product. It is also recommended to conduct a sensitivity patch test before using a product for the first time. As with any product, discontinue use if any irritation or adverse reaction occurs.

Glycolic Acid: Derived from sugarcane, it is used as an exfoliant and is related to alpha-hydroxy acid in its action. Often added to cosmetic products to balance the acid and alkali elements.
It is recommended to use sunscreen with at least a 15 SPF while using such products since they tend to increase sun sensitivity. Wear a hat for additional protection and protective clothing if you are using a glycolic acid based product. It is also recommended to conduct a sensitivity patch test before using a product for the first time. As with any product, discontinue use if any irritation or adverse reaction occurs. Protective clothing is also good if you are using a glycolic acid product on skin other than the face.

Green Tea: Has antioxidants which are believed to help reduce the look of fine lines, and caffeine to address puffiness, making it a perfect ingredient for use around your eyes.

Hyaluronic Acid (Sodium Hyaluronate): Found in the body, Hyaluronic Acid is used to lubricate joints and cushion other parts such as the skin. It's used in topically applied rejuvenating products to increase the skin's moisture, volume and fullness. It is capable of absorbing and retaining water over 1,000 times its weight.

Idebenone: Idebenone is pronounced (eye-deb-eh-known). A relatively new discovery in the beauty and anti-aging industry, Idebenone is an organic compound reputed to have superior anti-oxidant properties very similar to that of Coenzyme Q10. It is actually the bioengineered variation of Coenzyme Q10. It acts as a protector against free radicals. Due to production costs, it tends to cost a bit more than other beauty ingredients. However, a demand continues to exist because of its reputation for anti-aging and brightening properties.

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia): Oil is distilled from the tops of flowering lavender plants. Generally added to products as a perfume, it is found in soaps, perfumes and topical skin preparations. Also, according to the long standing practice of aromatherapy, the scent is also believed to soothe.

Matrixyl 3000: Best known to help reduce the appearance of wrinkle depth. Matrixyl 3000 differs from Matrixyl in that Matrixyl 3000 is made up of both Palmitoyl Oligopeptide and Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide (Matrixyl only has one peptide, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide). An essential function of Palmitoyl Oligopeptide is that it supports the skin's rejuvenated appearance. Matrixyl 3000 is renowned in the anti-aging industry for its properties to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, along with improving the look of skin tone and helping to reduce roughness.

Niacinamide (Vitamin B3): A naturally occurring B vitamin found in various plants including sweet birch and wintergreen leaves. It can also be created synthetically through a process of heating phenol and carbon dioxide. It is used to slough the skin, aiding clean, clear complexion.

Shea Butter: An emollient plant lipid. The fruit of the karaite tree in the Savannah region of West Africa produces a rich, luxurious moisturizing fat. The fruit is crushed and boiled until it resembles an ivory or yellow colored cream. It's widely used in lotions, creams, hair conditioners and lipsticks.

Vitamin A: Used for its moisturizing properties.

Vitamin C: Also known as Ascorbic Acid, it is especially used in anti-wrinkle creams and serums. It's valued for its ability to act as a preservative and antioxidant. Depending on the type of product, it comes in several forms, such as a powder or cream.

Vitamin E: Also known as Alpha Tocopherol, it is usually derived from vegetable oils. It's used as a moisturizing antioxidant.

Zinc Oxide: Widely used mineral for numerous beauty products, zinc oxide is used in: blush, shaving creams, light and white eye shadows, powders, cosmetics, antiperspirants and depilitories. It is also used in foundations and dusting powders for its opaque qualities.