Skin Rejuvenation

13 Anti-Aging Skincare Ingredients You Need to Know

Many wrinkle creams and lotions sold in department stores, drugstores and on the Internet promise to reduce wrinkles and prevent or reverse sun damage. With so many anti-aging skincare products on the market, it’s hard to know which ones work—and which ones don’t.

How well a skincare product works often depends on its ingredients and the manner in which it should be used. Because over-the-counter wrinkle creams aren’t classified as drugs, they’re not required to undergo scientific research to prove their effectiveness. If you’re looking for a facelift in a bottle, you probably won’t find it in the over-the-counter wrinkle creams. That being said, wrinkle creams do have the ability to help prevent and treat fine lines, as well as adequately moisturize the skin.

The effectiveness of an anti-wrinkle cream depends in part on its active ingredients. What are the anti-aging ingredients every man and woman should know? Read on to discover the ingredients that actually make a difference.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C has been shown to increase collagen production—including dermal collagen, which is significant for wrinkle reduction. It also reduces the appearance of skin discoloration, strengthens skin’s barrier response, enhances its repair process, reduces inflammation and helps skin better withstand exposure to sunlight, whether it’s protected by sunscreen or not.

Alpha Hydroxy Acids and Beta Hydroxy Acids

AHAs are best for normal-to-dry or sun damaged skin because they help bind moisture and improve healthy collagen production and smooth an uneven skin texture. BHAs are best for normal-to-oily or breakout-prone skin while also being excellent for reducing redness caused by rosacea.


Simply put, retinol helps skin cells create better, healthier skin while increasing the amount of skin-support substances. It has been shown to increase the skin’s collagen production and glycosaminoglycans content, resulting in firmer skin with an improved texture and enhanced barrier function.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E works in several different ways including helping to protect cell membranes from oxidative damage and preventing collagen from being destroyed. It also enjoys a powerful synergistic relationship with vitamin C. Vitamin E on an ingredient label may be listed as tocopheryl acetate, tocopheryl linoleate, tocotrienols, alpha tocopherol and tocopheryl succinate.


This component of vitamin B3 has been shown to increase ceramide and free fatty acid levels in skin. It prevents skin from losing water content and stimulates microcirculation in the dermis. It also has a growing reputation for being able to lighten skin discoloration and reduce acne.

Green Tea

Green tea’s antioxidant component works to reduce inflammation, build collagen and reduce cell damage by impeding the harmful effects of sun exposure. When found in cosmetics, epigallocatechin gallate (an abundant catechin in tea) is a more potent, stable way to get the antioxidant benefit on skin.


Like most antioxidants, resveratrol has incredible protective benefits for skin. When applied topically, resveratrol protects against sun damage, improves collagen synthesis and reduces cell damage. It is a stable, potent antioxidant worth finding in a skincare product.

Grape Seed Oil

This antioxidant rich oil significantly reduces free-radical damage, and combining it with other antioxidants greatly enhances its efficacy. It also has wound-healing properties. These things alone make grape seed oil one of the top superstars for fighting wrinkles.


Curcuminoids are found in the spice turmeric, and they have potent anti-inflammatory properties, both internally and externally. They also work to suppress excess melanin production in the presence of sunlight, and help alleviate the chronic inflammation, irritation and sun damage that causes skin to look older and become unable to repair itself.

Soy Isoflavone Extract

Research shows soy and its components to be powerful antioxidants that are extremely beneficial for skin. Studies show that these derivatives inhibit environmental damage, reduce irritation, improve skin texture, build collagen and fight sun damage.


Ceramides make up about 20 percent of the skin’s intercellular matrix—essentially the glue that holds skin cells together—helping skin maintain its appearance while protecting it. When your skin suffers from sun damage, a dry environment or irritating skincare products, ceramides decrease, leaving the skin vulnerable. Replenishing the ceramide content of your skin is a powerful way to protect it, helping it to act and look younger.

Linoleic, Linolenic Acids, and Phospholipids

These fatty acids replenish the skin’s intercellular matrix, preserving its appearance. All fatty acids function as cell-communicating ingredients, working to tell the appropriate skin cells how to function in a healthier manner. They also help reduce inflammation, which is believed to be a key factor in how the skin ages.

Coenzyme Q10

This ingredient may help reduce fine wrinkles around the eyes and protect the skin from sun damage. A handful of studies have shown that Coenzyme Q10 may have an effect on skin and the appearance of wrinkles, most notably by reducing ultraviolet light damage, stimulating healthy collagen production, and reducing substances in damaged skin that wreak havoc on its support structures. The latest research also suggests that CoQ10 has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, making it one of many helpful antioxidants for skin.

Take a Proactive Approach to Skincare

How can you get the most out of your skincare cream? It’s generally recommended that you first use a toner prior to applying it. This is because a staggering 10-15% of makeup remains on the skin after cleansing, and if your skin isn’t totally clean, it stops anything you apply next from absorbing effectively. A toner removes impurities such as residual cleanser and traces of makeup which block pores and can lead to blackheads. Without it, even the most effective moisturizer is unable to fulfill its potential because it hasn’t been able to penetrate your skin properly.

The order in which we use skincare products is also crucial to effectively fighting the signs of aging. For instance, eye cream should be applied before moisturizer. This is because the eye area is more delicate than the rest of the face, so the product is lighter. By applying the eye cream first, you are forming a barrier against a heavier moisturizer that can cause puffiness. Most experts advise applying your skincare products in the following order to get the most out of each beauty product: cleanser, toner, serum, eye cream, and moisturizer.

And let’s not forget the most important skincare regimen of all: wearing a daily moisturizer containing a SPF of 15 or higher. Wearing sunblock every day helps protect the skin against further damage caused by UVA and UVB rays. Sunblock prevents facial brown spots and skin discoloration. It also slows down the development of wrinkled, prematurely aging skin. Though your night cream doesn’t have to contain sunscreen, your day cream most definitely should. By taking a proactive approach to your skincare, you’ll keep your skin looking radiant.