Free Radical Protection

Dermatologist explains why free radicals are bad for your skin.

Free radicals attack and destroy skin structures. They are involved in all aspects of skin misadventures that lead to complexion problems including sun damage, wrinkles, inflammation and more.

Free radicals are chemical species possessing an unpaired electron, meaning they are a half of a molecule. This is inherently unstable and they rabidly look to grab another electron off of neighboring chemicals. In the process, they damage things - like components of precious skin structures. 

What causes free radicals in the skin?

It is estimated that 80% of skin free radicals come from UV sun exposure. They also form from stressors such as poor nutrition, physical and psychological stress, overeating, alcohol intake and environmental pollution. They are produced as part of normal physiologic processes too. 

How do you fight free radicals in your skin?

The unstable free radicals are neutralized by your skin's antioxidant reserve. When free radical formation exceeds your antioxidants, damage happens. Your skin gets its antioxidants mostly from your diet - hopefully! We now have topical antioxidants that have been shown to help too. 

How do you get more antioxidants into your skin to fight skin aging and damage? 

Replenish your antioxidant supply daily to fight free radical health and complexion damage with a healthy diet rich in fresh fruits and veggies. Load your skin with more than you can supply from your diet using antioxidant-rich skin care products.

What are the best skin care antioxidants for your skin?

Skin care antioxidants with the best scientific evidence for fighting complexion problems and skin aging include vitamin C and green tea polyphenols. Antioxidants such as vitamin E are often added to sunscreens because they have shown synergy for preventing sun damage.

Know, however, that most antioxidants are destroyed by contact with oxygen. So, for serious antioxidant loading, you want to use products protected from oxygen in airtight containers and formulated by pharmaceutical chemists who know how to stabilize and deliver the antioxidants through the skin. This means that you need to be a savvy consumer and not fooled by what I call a “fairy dusting” of antioxidants added to products for marketing appeal.

My Green Tea Antioxidant Skin Therapy™ is loaded with the right green tea polyphenol antioxidants - the equivalent of 500 cups worth per ounce of cream. My Retinol Night Cream™ has this same amount too, along with retinol, as does Advanced Corrective Eye Cream™. My Vitamin C Anti-Wrinkle Professional Treatment Serum™ has high concentration, stable vitamin C in the right L-ascorbic form. All of these products are dispensed in air tight containers. They are the superstars of my antioxidant skin care products and I've watched them help my patients for many, many years. I use them daily on my own face too.

Many of my other products also contain antioxidants. The levels are good, but lower, and the containers are not airtight. For real antioxidant powerhouse products, you want to use one or all of the 4 products I mentioned above.    

Reference,

Poljsak B, Dahmane R, Free Radicals and Extrinsic Skin Aging, Dermatol Res Pract., 2012; 13526. Feb 29, 2012

Katayar SK, Green tea prevents non-melanoma skin cancer by enhancing DNA repair. Arch Biochem Biophys. 2011 Apr 15;508(2):152-8.

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  1. Dr. Bailey's Green Facial Redness Relief Kit - with Green Tea Antioxidant Skin Therapy

    Facial Redness Relief Kit - with Green Tea Antioxidant Skin Therapy

    This near-magical product combination is indispensable in my dermatology practice for calming facial redness. 

    $88.20
  2. Dr. Bailey's Daily Moisturizing Face Cream for Oily to Normal Skin™

    Daily Moisturizing Face Cream for Oily to Normal Skin™

    Gentle, oil free hydration for facial skin. This light glycerin moisturizer is perfect for acne prone skin and to use in combination with all of our therapeutic facial products.

    $26.00
  3. Dr. Bailey's Daily Moisturizing Face Cream for Dry to Normal Skin™

    Daily Moisturizing Face Cream for Dry to Normal Skin™

    Richly moisturizing, non-greasy technology with just a hint of hydrating oils to balance dry facial skin. Fortified with antioxidants, vitamin E and CoQ10.
    $28.00
  4. Dr. Bailey's Bamboo and Clay Thermal Exfoliating Facial Scrub

    Bamboo and Clay Thermal Exfoliating Facial Scrub™

    Get smoother, softer cleaner looking skin with a more luminous appearance with this magic combination of physical exfoliation and thermal clay deep pore cleansing.

    $55.00
  5. Dr. Bailey's Sheer Strength Pure Physical Spray Sunscreen SPF 50+™

    Sheer Strength Pure Physical Spray Sunscreen SPF 50+™

    At last, an ultra-light sunscreen spray that’s pure mineral protection with micro (not nano) zinc oxide for the best anti-aging broad spectrum protection. 

    $44.00
  6. Dr. Bailey's Sheer Strength Pure Physical Invisible Sunscreen, SPF 50™ Broad Spectrum Protection

    Sheer Strength Pure Physical Invisible Sunscreen, SPF 50™ Broad Spectrum Protection

    Enjoy an oil free, non-whitening and “light as air” feel on your skin. Pure mineral zinc-oxide protection that’s perfect for even the most sensitive skin.

    $47.00
  7. Dr. Bailey's Sheer Strength Pure Physical Tinted Matte Sunscreen, SPF 50™

    Sheer Strength Pure Physical Tinted Matte Sunscreen, SPF 50™

    Oil-free and oil control ultra-light and tinted matte technology in a hypoallergenic sunscreen – it’s the holy grail for oily and sensitive skin AND it’s elegant for all skin types too! Contains iron oxide too making it the best sunscreen for melasma. 

    $47.00
  8. Suntegrity Natural Mineral Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 30

    Suntegrity Natural Mineral Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 30

    Non-greasy natural non-nano zinc oxide mineral sunscreen for every day sun protection. This is a lovely natural mineral sunscreen made with organic ingredients - and it's not just for babies!

    $24.00
  9. Dr. Bailey's Citrix Sunscreen SPF 40

    Citrix Sunscreen SPF 40

    My favorite every day sunscreen! I wear it every day on my face, neck and chest! It gives a great matte finish that's SPF 40 and water resistant for up to 80 minutes.

    $35.00
  10. EltaMD UV Daily SPF 40

    EltaMD UV Daily SPF 40

    Broad spectrum UVA and UVB protection in a lovely moisturizing lotion that's sheer and elegant of the skin. Perfect for normal to dry skin with it's hyaluronic acid and just a little light oil to moisturize your skin without leaving a heavy feel.

    $26.50
  11. EltaMD UV Clear SPF 46 Sunscreen

    EltaMD UV Clear SPF 46 Sunscreen

    Completely oil free and ultra light feel on the skin make this sunscreen a marvel. Perfect for oily to normal and acne prone skin. Comes with either a clear or tinted option to help soften complexion flaws for all skin types.

    $32.50
  12. Natural Face, Hand and Body Lotion™

    Natural Face, Hand and Body Lotion™

    Elegant and light-textured, natural moisturizer for dry to normal sensitive skin.
    $22.00
  13. Natural Face and Body Butter Cream™

    Natural Face and Body Butter Cream™

    Highly Effective moisturizer to heal your extremely dry and sensitive skin.
    $26.00
  14. Dr. Bailey's Omega Enriched Face Booster Oil

    Omega Enriched Face Booster Oil

    Mother Nature is an amazing chemist and sometimes just what the doctor ordered! My Omega Enriched Booster Oil combines ingredients that help calm inflamed and irritated skin while restoring a weakened skin barrier with essential fatty acids.

    $44.00
  15. Dr. Bailey's Face Booster Oil, Sensitive Skin Formula

    Face Booster Oil, Sensitive Skin Formula

    Deeply quench and hydrate dehydrated skin with rich, organic oils direct from Mother Nature. Our Face Booster Oil, Sensitive Skin Formula combines the most-effective, calming and non-fragrant plant oils for the best results.

    $44.00
  16. Dr. Bailey's Replenix CF Cream

    Replenix CF Cream

    This has been a popular facial product in my dermatology practice for years! This unique oil free cream contains a high concentration of green tea antioxidant polyphenol, combined with caffeine and hyaluronic acid (a very expensive protein moisturizing ingredient).

    $82.00

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