With age, many people experience a gradual breakdown of collagen and elastin, the two structural proteins that are vital to healthy-looking skin; but researchers say that with the help of a natural supplement, your skin can be rebuilt and made healthier no matter how old you are.
A study published in Skin Pharmacology and Physiology this month finds that Pycnogenol ®, an antioxidant extract that is found in French maritime pine trees, improved skin hydration and elasticity in women who participated in a clinical trial.
The study was conducted at the Leibniz Research Institute for Environmental Medicine in Dusseldorf, Germany, and examined 20 healthy 55- to 68-year-old women. Participants were given 75 mg of Pycnogenol® every day for 12 weeks.
Skin hydration, skin elasticity and skin fatigue were examined at the beginning of the trial and after six and 12 weeks.
The study found that:
•Pycnogenol® enhanced skin elasticity by 25 percent, in addition to skin hydration by 8 percent, and was especially noticeable in women who had dry skin from the start, with an increase of 21 percent.
•Pycnogenol® decreased skin fatigue considerably.
•Pycnogenol® reduced skin wrinkles by 3 percent and increased skin smoothness by 6 percent.
Pycnogenol® is a natural plant extract originating from the bark of the maritime pine that grows along the coast of southwest France and is found to contain a unique combination of procyanidins, bioflavonoids and organic acids. The extract is available in more than 700 dietary supplements, multivitamins and health products worldwide.