The frost pleasantly tingles the skin, the cheeks become rosy from the cold – winter is in all its glory. Beyond the charms of this time of the year, we forget that for skin frost is full of stress, and the blush on her cheeks is her cry that the first stage of frostbite is approaching. Of course, half an hour in a warm room eliminates all signs of danger, the skin becomes normal in color, and the next morning, when looking in the mirror, no one remembers that it froze yesterday.
The skin “remembers” about the frost
Everyone knows that the sun, that is, ultraviolet radiation, in large doses for the skin is harmful and leads to its premature aging. Therefore, people living south of 60 degrees of latitude, use protective ointments, creams from sunburn and so on.
However, skin suffers more in winter than in summer. Sweaters and fur coats cover the body, warm shoes protects the feet, and the face remains unprotected. The argument among supporters of the “Cold is not scary” position is exhaustive: they say that in front of the skull there are no organs that could not adapt to the cold for many years, and frosts that will hit the bare back, or rather the liver and kidneys, face are not afraid. Indeed, if you follow simple preventive measures, it will not be difficult to protect yourself from diseases of the organs located in the “anterior part of the skull”. But the skin and subcutaneous layers, these methods will not protect in any way.
All skin layers contain thermoreceptors – receptors that signal to the brain that the ambient temperature is too high or too low, so you should rather leave the place in which the person is, or vice versa – that the temperature is comfortable and the person can stay here as long as necessary. But they inform about overheating almost 6 times more actively. Therefore, a person immediately notices that he is hot, that there is a risk of getting heatstroke, but he does not immediately realize that his face is frozen and that there is a risk of slight frostbite. The risks of getting heatstroke and slight frostbite, which is interesting, are about the same. As a result, from the cold, the upper layer of the skin – the epidermis – suffers the same 6 times more than from ultraviolet radiation.
Why is frost bad for skin?
Under the influence of temperatures that the body “considers” to be unsuitable, in the skin and subcutaneous layers are produced the so-called information molecules – cytokines. They are divided into:
- proinflammatory, that is, activating local immunity in response to the risk of inflammatory processes (such a risk occurs during cold and heat);
- anti-inflammatory, that is, inhibit the development of inflammatory processes;
- regulating local immunity.
Cytokines make the skin rougher, denser, providing maximum protection. The longer the skin feels the effect of the irritating factor and transmits signals to the brain, the longer the brain provokes the production of cytokines as a response and the more actively they are produced. If the irritating factor acts constantly, the skin does not have time to recover while the person is in comfortable conditions, and its rudeness begins to be felt even when the ambient temperature is normal.
As we remember, a person “learns” about the effects of frost from the brain about 6 times later than about the effects of heat. Therefore, during the stay in the cold before the brain begins to signal freezing, it has time to develop much more cytokines than when there is a risk of thermal shock. The result is an aging of the skin that occurs 6 times faster than under the influence of ultraviolet radiation.
Interesting! In small quantities, cytokines are produced by any person. However, their number directly depends on the number of irritants – not only temperature, but also such as toxins, foreign particles (all sorts of dust), improper hygiene products, creams, and so on. That is why the skin of people living in ecologically dirty regions, as well as those who are not very carefully selects creams, lotions, decorative cosmetics and other means, is aging much faster.
In addition to excessive cytokine production, due to the narrowing of the pores in the cold, less sebum is produced – a natural skin nourishment. It provides both the dermis and the epidermis with substances that are necessary for the smooth performance of their functions, and the function of the skin is, in fact, one – protective. Due to the lack of image.phpresources, the skin becomes thinner, more fragile, and local immunity decreases. It becomes more vulnerable to any external stimuli, both viral-infectious and mechanical.
As a result, for example, microcrystals of ice, which are always in the frosty air, injure the epidermis, although with normal functioning of the sebaceous glands, it would be invulnerable to them. The skin of the face is covered with invisible cracks, which then appear on the thinnest layers in the form of a vascular grid. If all skin becomes thinner, then such a mesh can cover the entire face.
By the way, flaccidity of the skin that appears over the years is the result of a malfunctioning metabolism, and in fact, the sebaceous glands that carry these things.
Constant freezing, as well as constant stay in the zone of strong UV radiation, leads to metabolic disorders. The reason for this is that the cells adapt to the state that the environment causes. That is, with a constant stay in the cold, the pores “get used” to be narrowed, so after a few months the skin becomes flabby and acquires a permanent earthy tint, noticeable in warm rooms.
Protect skin from cold
In order to prevent all of the above, cosmetology for several centuries has been developing tools that would level the effect of frosty air on the skin. Several methods of protection have been invented, among them – three main ones:
Creating a kind of thermostatic film on the face (and hands). It covers the skin with a protective layer that softens the effect of frost. The thicker the layer, the more “impenetrable” it is for cold. Under such a film with actual -20 degrees, the receptors act as if the temperature of the surrounding space was, for example, -7 degrees. The indicators, of course, are very different, and the price of the cream created using this technology directly depends on the advantages and disadvantages of anti-aging-creams-2 films. For example, frost penetrates through dense films less, but at the same time the skin may receive less oxygen, resulting in completely different problems. Therefore, the development of new creams aimed at making the film more thin, while maintaining its protective temperature indicators.
Filling the lack of natural skin nutrition. The technology on which most modern creams of the average price category are based. The most effective and safe means: the cream simply lays down the substances that the skin should receive ideally – that is, with proper nutrition, which will provide the necessary substances for the skin in the body, as well as with normal metabolism, which will allow all the elements to “get” before the skin layers. The disadvantage of these creams is that they often nourish only the epidermis, not penetrating into the lower layers. More expensive cream “get” to the dermis.
Metabolism regulation in the skin and subcutaneous layers under stressful conditions. These creams contain active substances that penetrate the skin, expand the pores and ensure the smooth operation of the sebaceous glands in frost conditions. They also restore the natural processes slowed down due to the cold. The disadvantage of such creams is one – the high price. It is also caused by the costs of recreating natural organic processes in the laboratory, but since now all these processes are 90% investigated and successfully implemented in many cosmetic corporations, the main reason for the high price of such creams is the high cost of components.
There are opponents of the use of creams that protect the skin from frost. Their argument is the following: all creams “fool” the skin, as a result of which cytokine production decreases. On the one hand, this is good, because the skin is not coarse, not thick. On the other hand, it is bad, because local immunity also turns out to be “deceived” and does not work in the conditions in which it must act, which means that the skin becomes more vulnerable to various diseases. This argument is not unreasonable, and then we will describe how scientists solve this problem.
Squalene in amaranth: a breakthrough in cosmetology
Amaranth cosmetic products began to be developed almost immediately, as soon as it contained a high content of squalene. We have already written about squalene and its properties: it is a substance that is able to saturate the skin cells with oxygen even in conditions of severe lack of oxygen.
Before the discovery of squalene in amaranth, a familiar source of this substance was only the liver of deep-sea sharks. Of course, about any stream production of cosmetic products based on squalene was out of the question: it was simply impossible to obtain such an amount of shark liver, and squalene image54 proved to be too expensive.
They tried to synthesize it artificially and eventually received squalane, a substance that is still used in cosmetology to reduce the cost of the final product. Unfortunately, it does not reproduce all the properties of squalene (which is why it is called differently), and it is naturally considered that cosmetic preparations made on the basis of squalane are less effective than means with squalene.
With the discovery of amaranth, biochemical institutes, one after another, began to conduct experiments to study the effect of squalene on human skin. It is not surprising: if the assumptions were confirmed, the state could be made in cooperation with the cosmetology industry.
And so it happened, and the results of research even exceeded the expectations of scientists.
Amaranth – skin protection on all fronts
Squalene justified itself. This element really turned out to be a very active substance capable of supplying cells with oxygen under conditions of the most severe hypoxia. Squalene “brought” oxygen to parts of the body with poor circulation, which naturally lacked almost all substances. Squalene made its way through the deposits of subcutaneous fat, which provoke, for example, such a known violation as cellulite (as well as many others – less known). Finally, squalene fed the cells under stressful conditions caused by low temperatures, that is, at the above-mentioned frost.
Of course, the dignity of squalene is not only that it “carries” oxygen almost everywhere. The main advantage that made him popular is that he “travels” through the body as a part of fats, and due to his activity and his desire to saturate the remote parts of the body with oxygen, he also brings fats there. And in fats contains the bulk of those substances that are needed for nutrition, strengthening and full capacity of almost all body tissues, including the skin.
Not squalene united
For some time, researchers were so interested in squalene, that they forgot about its immediate source. This annoying omission was made up only a few decades ago, when, when studying the effects of squalene on human skin, it was not the squalene itself that was used, but amaranth oil with a high content of it.
It was then that the result and exceeded expectations. It turned out that amaranth oil practically solves the above-mentioned problem of reducing local immunity (due to the “deception” of the body and the lack of cytokines) when using protective creams in the cold.
The anti-inflammatory property of amaranth has been known for a long time and was used long before the discovery of squalene. Amaranth infusions were made in the Renaissance, and undoubted confirmation of this in the form of healers’ manuscripts (in the territory of modern Europe, at least) has reached our days. Not exact documentary, but allegorical information suggests that the healing – it is anti-inflammatory – properties of amaranth was used even by ancient healers.
Now amaranth treats many inflammatory diseases of internal organs, local inflammations (ENT, gynecological) and external injuries, as a result of which inflammatory processes develop.
It is logical in such circumstances that amaranth was able to maintain local skin immunity in the cold. In fact, it performs the same functions as cytokines:
- Pro-inflammatory. Amaranth actually has an immunostimulating effect and is able to increase the “sensitivity” of the immune system to the slightest irritant, including cold.
- Anti-inflammatory. Amaranth suppresses inflammatory processes, as a result of which, in fact, it was valued by healers in the old days and is used to this day.
- Regulating local immunity. This property of amaranth is closely related to the immunostimulating action. In fact, immunostimulating and immunomodulating are produced in this case in a complex.
It cannot be said that the anti-inflammatory property of amaranth completely replaces the body’s natural response to cold. However, it is able to maintain the skin with the use of protective creams in such a state that both the dermis and the epidermis continue to perform their protective function and protect the person from viruses and other external irritants.
Cream with amaranth – the solution to all problems at the same time
Any protective creams for the skin, including “anti-frost”, are made on the basis of the fatty base (oil mostly) and some active substance (or two, maximum three). All other elements are often simple supplements that enhance the action of the active substance, or regulate it, or compensate for any negative property.
Squalene – the very active substance, which in recent times is often used as a basis for creams. Such creams are not called amaranth; amaranth is not mentioned at all.
Amaranth cream is a cream that combines two properties of amaranth, namely:
- due to the active substance – squalene – nourishes the skin cells with essential substances, including oxygen;
- due to the anti-inflammatory, immunostimulating and immunomodulatory effects provides a response of local immunity to stimuli.
This is enough so that most amaranth creams can be used as an effective and safe frost protection. Typically, these creams use amaranth oil with the highest content of squalene, which is the active substance, fatty component and a source of additional components at the same time. (This is not uncommon: so, there are creams consisting of olive and many other oils.) Amaranth creams are supplemented with another part of the fatty base, some microelements, substances that strengthen the structure of the tissue, relax the skin, moisturize it, regulate the fat content and so on – depending on the purpose and type of cream.
Amaranth creams – useful and relatively inexpensive
The vast majority of amaranth protective creams are made according to the technology mentioned at the beginning of the article (“Protecting the skin from the cold” part) in the third paragraph, that is, they are aimed at regulating the skin and subcutaneous processes in stressful (for the skin) conditions. This is due to the previously listed properties of squalene – the ability to penetrate into tissues with poor blood circulation and 2 processes slowed down due to cold.
Creams made on the basis of this technology are considered more useful than creams that work on the principle of “protective film” and saturate the skin with nutrients. At the same time, the price of such creams, in which amaranth is used, is quite democratic, since the component itself is relatively inexpensive.
Some manufacturers prefer to use amaranth in creams that act on the principle of saturating the skin with nutrients (the second item in the list of types of creams, the subtitle “Protect the skin from the cold”). Such tools are cheaper, since the process of their manufacture is much easier. There are disputes about their effectiveness, and usually cosmetologists come to the conclusion that such creams lose to those that regulate skin and subcutaneous processes. The main argument is as follows. Creams-regulators provoke the activity of the natural processes inherent in this particular person, but because the skin receives nutrition in accordance with the individual characteristics and needs of a particular organism. Nourishing creams, in turn, simply saturate the skin with a complex of substances that are needed in general for the skin of this type, but do not adjust to individual needs. Nevertheless, many residents of the northern regions also quite successfully use such creams. The effectiveness of this type of amaranth creams is due to the fact that they have one indisputable advantage: due to its activity, squalene nourishes all the substances contained in the cream, not only the epidermis (upper layer), but also the dermis (middle layer) and penetrates even into the subcutaneous layers .
Amaranth creams, acting on the principle of “protective film”, there is practically no, except for separate experiments.
Due to the fact that the percentage of amaranth oil in amaranth creams is quite high, some consumers who have heard about the effectiveness of amaranth use butter instead of cream. This is a very controversial position. On the one hand, and anti-inflammatory, and immunostimulating, and immunomodulatory effects, as well as the effect produced by squalene, amaranth oil, if rubbed into the skin, will also protect against frost. On the other hand, an excess of fat with constant use of the oil is likely to disrupt the work of the sebaceous glands, which will again lead to a metabolic disorder. Convenience and aesthetic side of this method is also in question: oil, because of the fat content, cannot be fully absorbed into the skin, unlike cream, therefore it will pollute clothes and will also shine on the skin.
We recommend using proven amaranth-based cosmetic products. At the moment, they are made for all skin types, and some companies allow you to choose a suitable protective cream in accordance with the climate. It is logical that the cream, which will protect the skin of residents of the dry northern regions, is not quite suitable for those who live in the southern regions with high humidity, where the temperature in winter rarely falls below -10 degrees.
Also, do not forget to pay attention to the composition: squalane and squalane are written similarly, but the effect is different. However, creams with squalane can also be effective and completely protect the skin in mild winters if you do not spend a lot of time outside.
And most importantly – remember: if someone praised your frosty blush, thank the person – and try as soon as possible to get to a warm place where this blush will quickly come down. After that, it does not hurt to rinse your face with warm water and apply a regenerating cream. By the way, in the latter, amaranth is also often added, and simply squalene, obtained from amaranth. But let’s talk about these tools another time.
May your winter be bright and healthy – with amaranth!