The Role of Elastin in Wrinkle Reduction*

The Role of Elastin in Wrinkle Reduction
Editor's Note: This article has been recently updated with latest information and research studies.
 

What is Elastin?

As part of the connective tissues, elastin is an important load-bearing tissue in the vertebrates. Elastin is encoded by the ELN gene in humans. Elastin gives the skin, organs and connective tissues strength and elasticity. It is considered to be the rubber band that helps skin and other organs maintain shape and bounce back. Elastin is produced throughout childhood. As adults, we make little to no elastin. Approximately 30-50 percent of the aorta, 50 percent of the elastic ligaments and 2.5 percent of the skin is made up of elastin.

What is Elastin Composed Of?

Elastin is composed of protein in the extracellular matrix surrounding the skin, organs and connective tissues. It is part of the connective tissue and is elastic. It allows many tissues in the body to bounce back after stretching or contracting. It is a major protein component of the arteries and the veins. Elastin is extremely durable in skin. Its half-life is approximately 70 years, but it is slowly replenished. As we age, our skin gradually loses elasticity. Approximately 10 percent of elastin content is lost over a lifetime.

What are the Functions of Elastin?

Elastin works with collagen in the connective tissues. They both play a huge role in the aging process. Elastin keeps your skin tight and young-looking. Since we lose* elastin as we age, our skin begins to sag and the muscles weaken, causing fine lines and wrinkles, particularly in the areas we where we make repeated facial expressions.

How Does Elastin Reduce* Wrinkles on the Face?

The connective skin fibers of collagen and elastin begin to decrease* as you age. When this occurs, fine lines and wrinkles begin to form. Stimulating your skin to re-start production of these crucial proteins will help reduce* the appearance of existing wrinkles while helping to prevent new ones from forming. The best mode of fighting wrinkles is prevention. You can prevent wrinkles from occurring by protecting your skin from the harsh elements and bad habits, such as smoking tobacco cigarettes.

What are The Benefits of Elastin?

Elastin and collagen both are considered to be an important part of keeping skin smooth, supple and elastic. The body naturally produces* both proteins in youth, but slows down as we age, eventually stopping all together or producing* very little. In addition to being able to smooth out fine lines and wrinkles, they also help restore and maintain skin’s elasticity. There are some commercial product on the market that claim* to contain elastin (and collagen).

What Happens if Elastin is Damaged?

The elastin in your skin breaks down as you age. There are also some things that can cause premature aging, skin damage, causing your skin to age faster. Collagen reaches its high level when you are in your teens, but slows down, sometimes to nothing, as you age as an adult. Environmental damage, or sun damage, can hasten elastin loss. Approximately 90 percent of fine lines and wrinkles are due to sun damage. Your skin will not visibly show the damage from the sun for 20 years. That means, you can potentially start to damage your skin (thus damaging your elastin) as a child without proper protection. Other things, such as smoking tobacco cigarettes, can also damage your elastin.

How Can You Boost* Elastin in Your Facial Skin?

There are some helpful products on the market that can help boost* the elastin in your face. Look for products that contain vitamin C, retinoids and peptides. Vitamin C also encourages* collagen production helps fight off free-radical damage. Unfortunately, sun exposure deactivates vitamin C, as does cold and air. Be sure to purchase vitamin C products that are tightly sealed and store them in a cool, dry place.

Why is Elastin Used in Topical Applications?

Elastin is similar to collagen. It is a stretchable protein that contains two amino acids that allow the skin to stretch and bounce back to its original position. When used topically, it forms a film on the skin that locks in the natural moisture. It is often used to treat* dry, mature skin. Hydrolyzed is similar to collagen and is made to penetrate the epidermis, which helps to improve* skin suppleness and moisture levels.

Elastin is a tough and stable protein, so the human body doesn’t necessarily have to spend a lifetime producing* it. The aging process begins once the body has stopped producing* elastin.

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Expert Author : Linda Daniels (Consumer Health Digest)

Linda Daniels is a true creative force, having worked as a seasoned writer, editor and consultant in the fashion and beauty industries. Connect with Linda on Facebook for constant updates to her projects.