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 Premature Aging

The symptoms of premature aging are commonly considered to be fine wrinkles, variable pigmentation, dry skin, and a loss in firmness around the face, neck, and hands. Wrinkles may appear around the eyes, nose, and mouth; uneven, spotted darkening of the skin may be observed along the cheek line; skin may begin to lose elasticity along the jawline; and dry skin patches may be noticed on the forehead and cheeks. External factors, primarily excessive or prolonged sun exposure accelerate the onset of premature aging, especially in the facial area where skin is thinner.

 What causes premature aging?

The Signs of Premature Aging
•  Fine lines and wrinkles
•  Uneven skin tone
•  Changes in hair and skin texture
•  Sagging skin
•  Dry skin
Experts consider accumulated exposure to the sun to be the primary cause of premature aging. Photoaging is the term used to describe the effects attributable to exposure: rough, leathery skin with fine wrinkles, loose skin, blotchy complexion, spider veins, and age spots are but a few effects. Photoaging and photodamage accumulate over years, due to repeated exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays with inadequate sun protection. UV exposure accelerates the breakdown of the protein matrix (collagen and elastin) that gives the skin its structure and impairs the synthesis and repair of this matrix. This produces wrinkled, leathery skin that is consequently less resilient to further damage.

Other external contributing factors to premature aging include smoking, dehydration, and reduced sleep, all of which induce biochemical changes that affect the body's ability to eliminate oxidative damage and promote cellular repair.

 What are the structural changes?

The Effects of the Sun on the Skin
The protein matrix that gives structure to skin is primarily composed of collagen and elastin. Unfortunately, collagen and elastin are not without their detractors. Enzymes called matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are produced by the body to regulate collagen and elastin, and as regulators, these enzymes are responsible for the breakdown of collagen and elastin. Additionally, free radicals from normal oxidative processes interfere with cellular processes to cause inflammation and weaker structural matrices in body tissues. Normal cellular function typically maintains a balance for degradation and repair of the skin matrix. However, excessive UV and chemical exposure stimulates the production of MMPs and free radicals, and once the body can no longer keep up with clearing the damaging agents, the delicate balance tips in favor of cellular degeneration. The presence of MMPs induces the breakdown of collagen, inhibits elastin and collagen synthesis, and blocks the breakdown of melanocytes which produce the pigment, melanin. An abundance of free radicals competes with cellular processes to garner a diminishing supply of valuable intracellular agents responsible for tissue repair and cellular proliferation.

Persistent environmental factors may hyperstimulate dermal cells because of the reduced ability of the damaged tissue to properly develop and repair. For example, age spots or hyperpigmentation may result from a disproportionate distribution of melanocytes in the basal layer. Prior exposure to UV rays can impair the ability of the dermal cells to repair (i.e., naturally clear MMPs and free radicals) and regenerate (i.e., produce a new layer of cells containing melanocytes and structural proteins). Continued exposure may produce hyperpigmentation or age spots in the fragile dermal matrix from the progressive accumulation of melanin, a common symptom of photodamage. This continued cellular damage leads to premature aging, impairing the structural integrity of the skin and the dermal layers, resulting in aging spots, sagging skin, and wrinkles.

 How is premature aging treated? Do they work?

The effects of premature aging stem from an accumulation of factors, so premature aging cannot be counteracted with a single treatment. A more effective multiphasic approach includes treatment, maintenance, and prevention. The damaged epidermal layer can be gently removed to stimulate a rejuvenated layer through keratolysis. Maintenance regimens can provide active supplements to support free-radical elimination, inhibit MMPs, and promote dermal repair to optimize treatment effects. Sunblock protection in any routine is critical to successful treatment.

The KAVI portfolio of products provides solutions to treat and manage photodamage and oxidative stress evidenced on the skin. Key active ingredients to treat the effects include alpha arbutin, glycolic acid, hyaluronic acid, and retinol. For more information on essential active ingredients, click here.

 Alpha Arbutin

Extracted from the bearberry plant, alpha arbutin is a non-phenol alternative to hydroquinone. Alpha arbutin has been used to effectively treat hyperactive melanocytes that induce hyperpigmentation. Topical application of alpha arbutin has a two-fold effect: it inhibits melanocyte activity and it supports the breakdown of melanin in the basal layer of the epidermis. With regular use, the darkened patches will fade to match the surrounding skin.

Advanced Melanin Repair Serum
The KAVI Advanced Melanin Repair Serum contains a combination of active ingredients formulated to correct pigmentation and promote skin rejuvenation: alpha arbutin to correct pigmentation variance, glycolic acid to promote collagen synthesis and hyaluronic acid to hydrate the dermal layers for cellular repair. KAVI Advanced Melanin Repair Serum is non-comedogenic and is appropriate to use on all skin types.

 Alpha Hydroxy Acid (Glycolic Acid)

Glycolic acid is used in mild acid peels because it is a small molecule and water soluble, suitable for penetrating the skin to loosen the bonds in the epidermal layers to stimulate keratolysis (exfoliation). Glycolic acid is naturally derived from sugar cane and has been effective in accelerating collagen synthesis and stimulating modulators to inhibit MMPs and promote dermal repair and rejuvenation.

Glycolic Acid Peels
Concentrations of glycolic acid above 15% can cause burns and irritation. KAVI Glycolic Acid peels are available in highly purified therapeutic concentrations and contain a buffered formulation for a pH of 2.1 to reduce the risk of burns. KAVI Glycolic Acid treatments are prepared with naturally soothing witch hazel to reduce inflammation (instead of SD alcohol which can dehydrate the tissues).

Glycolic Cleanser 10
For sensitive skin, the frequency of glycolic acid peels may be reduced to biweekly applications. KAVI Glycolic Cleanser 10 contains a 10% concentration of glycolic acid and is specially formulated for dry skin - an effective daily adjunct to sustain the effects of treatment.

 Hyaluronic Acid

Hyaluronic acid is naturally produced by the body as a primary component in structural formation and repair, essential in moderating inflammation and mediating cell aggregation and proliferation. Hyaluronic acid is present in the extracellular matrix which can improve the elimination of free radicals and MMPs to enhance the collagen matrix and tissue hydration.

Hyaluronic Acid 95
KAVI Hyaluronic Acid 95 contains the highest concentration of hyaluronic acid in a topical humectant. In addition to the active ingredient, the formulation also contains glycosaminoglycans, which inhibit MMP proliferation and enhance the natural mechanisms between cells for hydration.

 Retinol (Vitamin A)

Retinol is a topical form of vitamin A that is essential for controlling biosynthesis in epithelial tissues. Vitamin A is a nutrient for cells to maintain normal function which ranges from normalization of various cell types (such as melanocytes), to maintenance of structural proteins (for dermal matrix maintenance) and reduction of MMPs to achieve systemic balance. Retinol is included in anti-aging products to induce a mild keratolytic effect while providing a key supplement to dermal cells for rejuvenation and repair.

Enhanced Retinol 0.30%
KAVI Enhanced Retinol 0.30% provides a stable preparation of retinol in a highly resorbable serum that does not produce inflammation and irritation typical of most retinoid products. Unlike most retinol products that destabilize within two months, the Enhanced Retinol 0.30% formulation maintains its potency for 6 months.

 What is an effective maintenance routine to prevent premature aging?

To sustain the effects of treatment and to continue to stimulate dermal repair and rejuvenation, directed use of products containing the correct active ingredients establishes the foundation for a successful maintenance regimen.

Keratolytic Enzyme Mask
Fruit enzyme peels provide a gentle alternative to chemical peels to naturally stimulate keratolysis and dermal rejuvenation. The KAVI Keratolytic Enzyme Mask offers a milder option to maintain skin rejuvenation and repair through regular exfoliation using natural fruit enzymes derived from pumpkin, pineapple, and papaya. Hyaluronic acid is included as an active ingredient to promote hydration. The KAVI Keratolytic Enzyme Mask is formulated in a soothing botanical base containing aloe vera and natural extracts, suitable for twice-weekly application.

Glycolic Acid Serums
Highly-buffered glycolic acid (pH 3.8) in an hyaluronic acid base offers an effective complement for all skin types to enhance the effects of weekly peels. KAVI Glycolic Serums are available in two concentrations to optimize dermal rejuvenation for even tone and texture. For more information on Glycolic Serum 15, click here; for Glycolic Serum 30, click here.

Glycolipidic Moisturizer
Daily use of proper cleansers and moisturizers are part of the basic skin care regimen required to minimize the effects of the environment and promote the skin's natural protection. The KAVI Glycolipidic Moisturizer is formulated to deliver optimized hydration in a daily-use moisturizer to supplement all treatments.

Complex A
KAVI Complex A is formulated to specifically slow the aging process of the delicate skin around the eyes. Complex A contains purified soy and rice peptides and glycosaminoglycans that inhibit MMP production, in addition to KAVI's unique glycolipidic complex, a moisturizer that penetrates through the skin's surface for sustained hydration. Herbal extracts in Complex A support microcirculation to soothe puffiness.

Complex C
KAVI Complex C contains a unique formulation designed to slow the aging process in the facial region by enhancing dermal hydration, stimulating collagen repair and synthesis, and softening the impact of muscle contractions that can lead to wrinkle formation. Complex C includes hyaluronic acid to complete its suite of targeted ingredients to naturally slow the formation of wrinkles and arrest the onset of premature aging.

Anti-Aging Systems
The KAVI Anti-Aging Systems are specially formulated for different skin types. Each system includes products in graduated strengths to address the signs and symptoms of premature aging in accordance with your treatment goals and skin sensitivities.

 What can I expect from treatment?

Depending on the type of treatment and the active ingredients in the product, superficial to deep exfoliation can be produced with glycolic acid peels. The epidermal layer will continue to shed for up to 72 hours following glycolic acid treatment. Dryness and sensitivity to sunlight are common effects, as the skin begins to repair and regenerate. Smoothness and improved tone can be observed after eight weeks of treatment with specialized serums, such as Complex A and Complex C.

 What are other treatment options for premature aging?

The effects of premature aging are the result of accumulated photodamage and environmental stresses. Surgical procedures such as plastic or cosmetic surgery can temporarily alleviate deep or profuse sagging or wrinkles; however, the integrity and strength of the dermal infrastructure still needs to be repaired and protected to treat premature aging effectively. Whether used alone or in conjuction with more intensive therapies, the ingredients in KAVI products help invigorate cellular processes to restore your skin's beauty using nature's own design.

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