Submitted by: Sally R Johnson

Growing old is not something most of us particularly care for beyond the age of about seven. Or perhaps more accurately, the appearance of growing old is something we try to avoid; trying to get through a job interview with your knowledge of SpongeBob SquarePants might not get you far. Next time you re in the cosmetics section of a department store or retail chemist, ask the assistant if they have any ageing cream, unvitalising lotion or something to make your wrinkles stand out more. At best you ll be greeted with a blank stare; at worst you ll see their hand creeping towards the panic button as they furtively call for security backup.

Over the years, the number of basic skincare products has grown steadily as scientists learn more about the ageing process and how to slow down its visible effects. In fact the number of actual ingredients has not grown as quickly as you might think by the number of products available, but they are of course two completely different things. Mixed into every cream is a pick and mix blend of scents, oils, colourings, suspension liquids, water and active ingredients that make a product unique, but it this last entry in the list, the active ingredients, that has to fulfil the claims of the manufacturer. Everything else is, well, cosmetic.

Most followers of the cosmetics industry will be familiar with the Priori brand. It s advertised in the glossy magazines and sits proudly on the shelves of the cosmetics stores. But what most people probably don t know is that an important set of anti-ageing active ingredients was discovered by one Joe A Lewis II, president and CEO of Priori. In his work as a chemist he discovered no fewer than three ingredients that now find themselves in many products, including rival ones, thanks to their success in trials.

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The big one is alpha hydroxyl acid, often shortened to AHA. This chemical compound is considered among industry specialists to be one of a handful or ingredients for which the term active actually applies, and it has been in use since the early 1980s. As well as making an appearance in creams and anti-ageing cosmetics, it is one of the basic ingredients in chemical peels, be they professional dermatological grade or home kits. If the idea of putting acid on your skin sounds ghastly, don t worry. Hardly anything in completely neutral, and we naturally have an acid mantle on our skin to protect us from bacteria. And don t forget that the A in DNA stands for acid.

More recent discoveries by the same Mr Lewis and his laboratory are the anti-ageing properties of idebenone in 2004 and the pioneering use of CoffeeBerry in 2008. This latter discovery is really making ripples in the world of cosmetics, with some experts claiming that it is the best natural product in the world (as the name suggests, it comes from a species of coffee plant).

Most skin care companies can make amazing claims about their products, but only a small number of laboratories can actually claim to have discovered the ingredients that most of the other companies use. Priori is one such company.

About the Author: Aging and skin care is one of Sally’s expert topic areas and brands like

Priori skincare

are well liked in this sector for quality and effectiveness. Sally has reported on many

skin care

brands and stores and make it easy for others to stay up to date with new trends.


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