There are two sides to your skin. The outside is what we hear the most about, and is easy to treat (when you know how) with the perfect skincare routine for your skin type. But even with all our best efforts to cleanse, tone, moisturize, and throw every hydrating product under the sun at our face, we can still look and feel like our skin needs a little boost.
Working outside-in will only take us so far, so we need to focus on taking care of ourselves (including our skin) from the inside-out. Ideally, we could get a dreamy 8 hours of sleep each night, free our minds from stress and have the perfect healthy diet 24/7. Well, I for one, know that’s not going to happen for me anytime soon! This is where oral supplements can come in and change the game, or so celebrities say. But do they actually work? Which ones can we put our trust, bodies and money into? We did a little research into what the professionals say.
Check Yourself (Out) Before You Wreck Yourself
Before we dive into the good stuff, we want to make it clear that there isn’t one magic pill, powder or gummy bear that is going to fix all your problems! While the trend may be popular on social media and seem like harmless vitamins, they’re not all approved by the FDA, and so there’s no solid proof that they’ll work in an average, healthy person.
You should always check with your doctor to see if your levels are high or low before you start consuming any of these supplements. “You could hurt yourself by taking too much,” explains Dr. Vivian Bucay, M.D., clinical assistant professor at the University of Texas Health Science Center. While some supplements are harmless to try, as any excess you don’t need will leave your body when you pee, other fat-soluble vitamins (such as A, D, E and K) can accumulate in your system and lead to serious issues.
So, once you’ve got approval from your doctor, go ahead and try some of these out...
Collagen Supplements For Youthful Skin
Collagen is a protein, naturally produced in the body, serving as the major component of connective tissues that make up several body parts, including tendons, ligaments, skin, and muscles.
‘After age 26, the body starts to slow down and doesn’t make collagen and elastin as efficiently as it once did,’ says nutritionist Lorraine Perretta of the International Institute for Anti-Ageing. As our skin loses its elasticity, fine lines and sagging become more noticeable, while the damage from free radicals can result in pigmentation and dark patches.
Collagen is now one of the most popular supplements claiming to improve your skin health. While you can find it in foods like pork skin, bone broth and fish, the collagen in supplements has already been broken down (or hydrolyzed) making it easier for the body to absorb. Several studies have shown that it may help to slow down the aging process by reducing wrinkles and dryness. It helps stimulate the body to produce its own collagen, keeping it looking plump and youthful for longer. While dermatologist Dr. Ohara Aivaz tells patients that it’s still not scientifically proven if collagen supplements really benefit us, there is probably very little harm from trying it out.
Moringa Powder Keeps Your Skin Hydrated
I truly believe that healthy hair, skin, and nails show from the inside out and one of the easiest ways to boost what nature gave you is with your diet. Moringa is the latest superfood that’s creating a buzz in the beauty sphere.
Harnessed as a powder from the leaves of the native African and Asian 'Miracle Tree', and it is celebrated for its medicinal properties. According to Abigail James, one of the UK's leading facialists, moringa is known to store numerous phytonutrients, amino acids, and high-value minerals that act as, among others, antioxidants, immune-boosters, anti-inflammatory, as well as lower blood sugar and cholesterol levels.
Because moringa is highly edible, it is often consumed as part of everyday cooking or powdered and used as a food supplement. It's found in capsules as well as powdered form. Moringa powder can be used as such with water, in curd and smoothies in your daily routine. Due to its versatility, moringa leaf powder is a popular option. It’s said to have a bitter and slightly sweet taste. You can easily add the powder to shakes, smoothies, and yoghurt. But another way to get the most out of this “miracle tree” is by extracting oil from its seeds, which offers a plethora of benefits for the skin, including countering the effects of free radicals.
Moringa has natural antimicrobial properties that help to dampen down the bacteria-induced inflammation that ultimately result in breakouts,'explains Dr Kemi Fab, Director of the Joyful Skin Clinic. 'These anti-inflammatory properties therefore reduce breaks in the skin, calming the skin leading to a smoother surface.'
It's also a go-to ingredient for those that suffer with dry skin, explains Dr Fab: 'It's rich in oleic acid which is an omega fatty acid. Moringa helps to prevent trans-epidermal water loss, protecting the skin's moisture barrier by keeping it well hydrated. It also contains skin-loving vitamins A, C and E, which are powerful anti-aging ingredients that help to promote collagen renewal, reduce hyper-pigmentation and nourish the skin'.
Probiotics Supplements Balance Your Skin
Probiotics are present in various types of food and readily available in pill or tablet form, but they significantly differ from other supplements by their very nature: probiotics are live, healthy bacteria.
These so-called friendly microorganisms are responsible for restoring balance in our bodies by making sure that the bad bacteria are kept under control and prevented from causing illnesses. Apart from that, they are known to successfully fight gut inflammation, help bodies absorb certain types of nutrients and keep the immune system in optimum shape. There are also many probiotic benefits for the skin. Probiotics can improve skin conditions and seem to have the power to prevent wrinkles and increase skin’s hydration, among other things.
A growing body of evidence suggests that using probiotics in both pill and topical form may help prevent and treat skin conditions including eczema, acne, dry skin, and UV-induced skin damage, explains the dermatologist Mary-Margaret Kober. Certain probiotics have been shown to boost the skin’s production of ceramides, or lipids (fats) that trap moisture in the skin and keep acne-causing bacteria levels in check. “People with eczema have lower levels of ceramides, so replacing it can be very important,” Kober says. Studies suggest that applying probiotic skin care products may reduce acne outbreaks and manage dry skin and eczema.
Skin pH increases with age, making it drier and allowing more “bad” bacteria to grow. UV damage from the sun also impairs the skin’s ability to fight free radicals, which are normal byproducts of our bodily metabolic processes that damage our cells. Research suggests some probiotics feed healthy bacteria to balance the skin’s pH and protect against free radical damage.