Many people have heard of cholesterol and essential fatty acids. These are usually associated with dietary habits. Ceramides are additional types of lipids but not something we typically hear about. That is, unless we are exploring how to best support aging skin. Cholesterol, essential fatty acids, and ceramides are all lipids and involved in the behavior and appearance of the skin. Here, we discuss why lipids are important ingredients in your skincare products.
Lipids in Your Skin
We often hear about the importance of keeping collagen and elastin proteins strong in the skin. Lipids also live in the various layers of the skin. In the epidermis, they act as a protective barrier that prevents the absorption of impurities and dirt. Lipids, which are natural fats for the skin, also prevent sun damage, promote moisture retention, and aid skin that needs healing from a scrape or cut.
- Cholesterol is a lipid that helps the skin’s protective barrier to recover quickly. When there is a cholesterol deficiency, the skin may be less elastic.
- Fatty acids support the retention of other lipids to support healthy cellular behavior and younger-looking skin.
- Ceramides are lipids that increase the hydration of the skin to boost plumpness and prevent flaking and rough texture.
Topical Lipids Build Resilient Skin
When we are young, the skin is nourished by an abundance of naturally-occurring lipids. Factors such as sun damage and biological age can cause the production and uptake of natural lipids to decline. This is one of the reasons our skin may become dry and rough and why we look dull and deflated in certain areas. Dry skin often has a compromised skin barrier, which can leave it susceptible to irritation. Using a topical lipid serum can counter these effects.
Dr. Murrell has developed a special line of skin care products based on the common needs his patients have. His replenishing lipid drop serum is made with phospholipids and glycolipids that are easily absorbed into the upper layers of the skin. These drops have demonstrated the ability to improve the moisture of the skin up to 28% within hours of application. Because the skin needs support to combat dry weather in the wintertime as well as the summertime, lipid drops are an excellent addition to a year-round skincare regimen.