Skin care, like clothing and hair styles, goes through phases. One beauty trend of the moment? Oxygenated skin care. Sounds healthy, but is it worth your hard earned cash?
When we think of oxygen, we think…essential to life. Skin care products containing O2 must be pretty dang healthy, right? Or at least that is what makers of oxygenated skin care want you to think.
Like oxygen bars of the ‘90s (remember those?), oxygenated skin care is supposed to sound enticingly fresh and good for you. And it does! Spas and derm offices use oxygen facials on the regular and with a celeb following. Why wouldn’t we mere mortals want our chance at getting in on this goodness?
What is Oxygenated Skin Care?
Hospitals have been using oxygen therapy to speed the healing of wounds and burns for some time now. This led some dermatologists and facialists to believe oxygen would also be good for treating minor skin issues, like wrinkles, acne, and redness.
With oxygen facials, a wand-like tool is used to apply pressurized oxygen to skin, delivering active ingredients into deeper layers. Most often products containing hyaluronic acid are used alongside the treatment. Fans of the procedure like the refreshed, plumped look it gives to skin.
Now you can also get your oxygen to go in skin care products. These babies are popping up at beauty shops everywhere. Even some organic beauty shops carry oxygen-infused items. This type of product contains either something called “suspended oxygen” or ingredients thought to generate oxygen as they soak into skin, like hydrogen peroxide.
What Do Experts Say About the Oxygen in Skin Care Beauty Trend?
Most scientists and medical experts are more reluctant to trust the benefits of topically applied oxygen in skin care, and believe it is more likely the hydrating ingredients in the products responsible for the plumped up glow.
To get semi-science-y here, oxygen is a gas. It is difficult for a gas applied topically in skin care to penetrate the outer layer of skin. So even if a skin care creator did suspend oxygen molecules in liquid, it would only react with the outermost layer of skin, providing little advantage to the overall appearance.
As for hydrogen peroxide. Yes, it does release oxygen. But again, the oxygen would only affect to the top layer of skin and would not penetrate to deeper layers.
The Verdict on Oxygenated Skin Care
Since O2 skin care has been around for a relatively short time, it wouldn’t be fair to dismiss it altogether. If you have a product you love that claims to be oxygenated, use that sucker and be happy. But if you are looking for the bottom line, it is most likely the moisturizing ingredients giving your complexion the healthy glow.
If you are looking to spend your beauty dollars on a product that makes skin look soft, fresh, clear, and dewy, invest in healthy plant oils and natural ingredients. And always choose products for your skin type to get the most from your skin care.
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Image of woman using skin care via Shutterstock