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Glycation and the Skin

Kris Campbell November 2013 issue of Skin Inc. magazine
Glycation and the Skin

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“Glycation” is a buzzword that is gaining more momentum in the consumer and retail sectors. Although most skin care professionals know the term, glycation is being discussed in consumer magazines, as well. It is always to your professional advantage to know what clients are reading in order to reduce the chance of being caught off guard.

The glycation process

It is already known that excess sugar can lead to a variety of health concerns, but what most forget is that too much sugar can also affect the skin. Sugar can be digested in many forms, including the consumption of carbohydrates and can even be formed via meal preparation. If there is too much sugar in the body, protein molecules can cross-link with sugar molecules.1 Once this cross-linking process has occurred, the new sugar proteins are called advanced glycation end products (AGEs). The human body does not recognize AGEs as normal, and will produce antibodies that cause inflammation in the skin. Once formed, AGEs tend to gravitate toward dermal collagen and elastin.

As people age, proteins in the body can become damaged through the introduction of AGEs—one of the key factors in aging of the skin. The more sugar you eat, whether processed or natural, the more AGEs are produced. When the body is overwhelmed with AGEs, collagen becomes compromised. Effects of the glycation process at the cellular level of the skin’s structure may result in wrinkling, loss of elasticity, stiffness, accelerated aging and compromised barrier function. Other conditions that appear when microcirculation is damaged and cell turnover slows is a loss of volume in the face due to redistribution of fat. Although the development of lines and wrinkles is normal as clients age, it is difficult to see clients in their 20s resemble a person in their 40s, which is more frequently being witnessed in treatment rooms.

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Treatment How-to: Facial for Glycated Skin

Repair, strengthen and hydrate glycated skin for a rejuvenated appearance and youthful glow.

Duration: 60–75 minutes

Cost: $140

Contraindications: When performing facial massage movements, use a lighter pressure than normal so not to tug on the skin.

Supplies and equipment needed:

  • Gloves (preferably nitril)
  • Towels
  • 4 x 4 cotton squares
  • Lukewarm water
  • Cool water
  • Eye-mask brush
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  • Eye pads
  • Beauty globes

Products needed:

  • Gentle facial wash
  • Creamy cleanser with enzyme, lactic or mandelic acid
  • Nonabrasive, gentle polish (jojoba beads or beads that dissolve)
  • Hydration mist
  • Anti-glycation serum
  • Soothing eye gel or serum
  • Pomegranate and bromelain enzyme
  • Hydrating gel mask
  • Eye serum or moisturizer
  • Hydrating lip product
  • Antiglycation moisturizer
  • Massage oil or lotion
  • Physical sunscreen—SPF 30 or higher

Step 1: After completing a thorough consultation and skin analysis with the client, cleanse the face with gloved hands using a gentle wash around the eye area, neck and décolleté. Remove with cool wet towel or 4 x 4 cotton squares.

Step 2: Perform a second cleanse with the creamy cleanser. Remove with lukewarm towel or 4 x 4 cotton squares.

Step 3: Apply nonabrasive, gentle polish.

Step 4: Remove with lukewarm wet towel or 4 x 4 cotton squares.

Step 5: Apply pomegranate and bromelain enzyme. Leave on for 10 minutes. Remove with lukewarm wet towel or 4 x 4 cotton squares.

Step 6: Perform extractions if needed without use of lancets.

Step 7: Refresh the skin by spritzing hydration mist onto the entire facial area.

Step 8: Apply the antiglycation serum to soothe the skin.

Step 9: Apply a soothing eye serum or moisturizer around the orbital ridge with an eye-mask brush. Then place eye pads soaked in cool water over the eyes.

Step 10: Lightly massage face with a hydrating gel mask to deeply hydrate for 10 minutes. Use beauty globes at this time to soothe skin.

Step 11: Perform a neck and shoulder massage using massage oil or lotion for 10 minutes.

Step 12: Remove the eye and face masks using 4 x 4 cotton squares soaks in cool water.

Step 13: Refresh the skin again by spritzing the hydrating mist onto the facial area.

Step 14: Apply a anti-glycation serum to the face and, using your fingers, tap it into the facial skin until it is absorbed.

Step 15: Warm a pearl-sized amount of eye serum or moisturizer on fingers, then apply to the outer eye area.

Step 16: Perform the same technique using a hydrating lip product and apply to the lips.

Step 17: Apply an antiglycation moisturizer to the face and, using your fingers, tap it into the skin until it is absorbed.

Step 18: Apply physical sunscreen of at least SPF 30 and tap into skin until it is absorbed.

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