Spreading Clean Beauty

How the power of nature can slow cell senescence

New breakthroughs in beauty technology are leading to a new era in bespoke skin care. Soon, consumers will have access to skin analysis and at-home DNA testing that will enable them to customize their routines. Inevitably, this signals a new, scientifically-driven approach to anti-aging: soon, consumers will be able to tailor their routines to combat aging at DNA-level, stimulating cell replication and suppressing senescence.

Openness to these types of technologies is undoubtedly increasing; for instance, 40% of Chinese consumers track their real-time healthcare data through wearable devices (Mintel, 2019). In the BPC space specifically, 50% of South African consumers think that beauty and grooming products that collect personal biometric data (like DNA or facial recognition) are more effective (Mintel, 2020).

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Considering consumers’ preference for scientifically-proven products – 87% of Chinese consumers trust products/ingredients created by scientists – beauty tech is undoubtedly one of the most significant trends for the next decade (Mintel, 2019). This is why brands need to target aging at a molecular level, which we’ll discuss here.  

Targeting cellular senescence at DNA level

Our genetic makeup impacts how we age. With the rise of personalized beauty innovations like DNA analysis, we can expect to see broader consumer comprehension of these processes. A key process in aging is cellular senescence, which occurs at DNA level. 

Over time, cells replicative and metabolic capacity will decrease. This process is known as replicative or cellular senescence, and essentially, it is the reduction in the skin’s capacity to renew itself. Effectively, the skin has a molecular clock, which marks the moment when the capacity of cell replication stops and senescence starts. 

More specifically, this mark is the DNA molecules located at the ends of chromosomes, called telomeres. Every time a cell divides, these molecules are shortened, reducing their replicative capacity. Cell senescence, and thus the aging process, begins once the telomere is so short it can’t replicate anymore.

Combining nature and science 

As introduced, beauty tech will heighten consumer awareness about the science of aging. They’ll be looking for personalized products that target these processes at a molecular level; however, naturally-derived products remain a key concern. In the US, 40% of buyers of clean, natural or organic products believe such products are safer than mainstream alternatives, and in Brazil, 41% of adults believe that natural ingredients are safer for their skin (Mintel, 2020).

However, this isn’t to say that scientifically-proven and natural ingredients are mutually exclusive; in fact, scientists should look to nature for inspiration. For instance, plants like Scutellaria baicalensis have been prized in Chinese medicine for centuries. Traditionally used to treat neurological disorders and chronic diseases, the molecular composition of this plant has now been found to suppress cell senescence. 

Slow the aging process at its root

Always inspired by nature and driven by science, Provital developed Vitasource™. Vitasource™ is a purified fraction obtained from roots of Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi, standardized in baicalin. This active ingredient has been obtained as a result of research conducted from a screening with more than 40 plant extracts. 

This pure botanical targets aging at the source by inhibiting cellular senescence, through inducing the cellular expression of telomerase (TERT Human Telomerase Reverse Transcriptase) in fibroblast. Effectively, the active ingredient repairs and preserves telomeres, repairing the molecule and slowing the shortening process.  

Thus, this active ingredient meets consumer demands from two angles: developed by scientists with concrete evidence for efficacy, derived from a natural source. Considering the rise of personalization, varying concentrations of this active ingredient could be a compelling proposition for bespoke beauty.

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