The Problem : Skin Dehydration

1) Distribution of Water

The water content of the skin is mainly held in the dermis. The dermis contains about 80% water and rarely drops lower. The glycosaminoglycans (GAG s) of the dermal matrix are associated with elastin and collagen protein fibres. As the GAGs are capable of retaining water, they are the main basis for the hydration of the skin . They provide its mechanical characteristics : flexibility and elasticity. Working towards the surfaces from from the dermis with its 80% hydration, there is a gradient of hydric concentration through the successive layers of the epidermis, which reaches a value between 10 and 15% at the stratum corneum . The aversge hydration rate of the stratum corneum is 13% and can fall rapidly due to climatic factors . The critical threshold lies at a 10% water content. In the upper layers of the epidermis the water is not free. The percentage of bonded water varies . It is affected by a range of factors, but in particular the natural moisturizing factor (NMF).

The surface hydration of the skin depends on three parameters :

  • water rising from lower in the dermis which penetrates the epidermis
  • transepidermal water loss, i.e. the water lost continuously through evaporation
  • water penetrating from the outside from the ambient humidity.


    2) The NMF

    The capacity of the stratum corneum to bond water (coming from the atmospheres or from a cosmetic product) is principally due to the presence of NMF (amino acids, urea, lactates, inorganic ions, organic acids, etc.) in the skin cells. The NMF have strong hygroscopic properties. They are capable of fixing water within the keratinocytes and are protected by the semi-permeable phospholipid membrane which allows them to draw in water by osmosis but prevents it escaping from the cell after solution . It is thus that the horny layer cells maintain their hydric balance. The loss of water retaining powers of the stratum corneum is strongly influenced by an insufficient level of NMF. The use of irritating detergents can damage the plasmic mambranes of the keratinocytes and dehydrate the cells by allowing the NMF to escape.

    3) Characteristics of Hydrated Skin

    Hydration determines the quality and comfort of the skin. Hydrated skin presents a constant level of hydration (13%) in the stratum corneum and in the dermis (80 %) as a result of an active cell and membrane metabolism and a functioning lipid barrier. Skin with a stratum corneum which is well hydrated is characterized by being supple, clear and smooth .

    4) Characteristics of Dry Skin

    The factor responsible for dehydration are mainly climatic, but there are many others such as the use of detergents, prolonged baths, wind, cold, excessive exposure to the sun, shaving or even certain synthetic fibres. Internal factors in dehydration are also implicated; these include certain hereditary pathologies which lead to a permanent state of skin dehydration (ichthyosis, diabetes, etc.), hydromineral imbalances, or tobacco which generates free radicals. The stratum corneum dries out very rapidly, giving a very dry skin which loses its elasticity and becomes scaly. Dehydration is initially accompanied by an uncomfortable sensation and tightening of the skin, followed by roughness and peeling. Dehydrated skin is also characterized by disruption of its barrier properties, a loss of elasticity and changes in its mechanical properties. It cannot retain perspiration and has difficulty defending itself against incursion by the molecules and microorganisms which are found on its surface.

  • The Solution
    Hydrapelle line contains moisturizing agent combining several mechanisms for maintaining the moisture balance of the skin .

  • A protective, anti-dehydrating action thanks to film-forming properties.
  • Surface and deep-down moisturizing.
  • An increase in cell activity which restore vitality to the skin.

    It provides a complete answer to all the problems resulting from dehydration of the skin. The moisturizing obtained is rapid, but above all long lasting and durable.

  • Cosmetics Features

    Is a vegetal marine source of Omega 3 essential fatty acids (EFA's). Derived from a vegetal plankton source, the active portion of Omegaplancton is composed of Docosahexanoic Acid (DHA + 17%) and Eicosapentanoic Acid (EPA+4%). These essential fatty acids are normally found in the skin and are fundamental to cell membrane development as well as aiding in the reduction of transepidermal water loss (TEWL). EFA's may also play a role inmmediating the inflammatory response caused by sun, detergents, pollution and the aging process. As we age, the body ability to produce EFA's diminishes thus, the presence of these EFA's in the skin decreases.

    Functionality of Omegaplancton

    • Stimulation of the synthesis of lipids, precursor of cerebrosides and ceramides (test made on human skin explants).
    • Inhibition of Nitrogen Oxide (NO) (in vivo test).
    • Increase of superficial hydration and increase of the whole epidermis (in vivo test).
    • Reconstruction of the skin lipidic barrier.
    • Reduction of inflammation.
    • Anti-aging.
    • Sensitive and dry skin treatment..
    • Nourishing treatment

    Vegetable Ceramids
    Derive from a compound contituted from Sunflowerseed oil, Trilaurin and Octyldodecanol. They have an anti-evaporation effect because prove indispensable in maintaining the right degree of epidermic moisture. Indeed, since these strengthen the "cellular cement", they limit the amount of outgoing evaporated water as well as the water-repellency of the outermost part of the horny layer.

    Cosmetic properties

    • Action on dual lipid layers (stratum corneum): enhances fluidity, enhances stability.
    • Restructuration of damaged skin (by detergents) or hyper-permesble skin.
    • Increases permeability of cell membranes.
    • Regulates trans-epidermic flux of water loss (non occlusive evaporation barrier).
    • Promote skin hydration.

    Collagen is the principal structural proteinic component of the dermis which is synthesized by fibroblasts. In the dermis, with the passing of time, native or soluble collagen turns into insoluble collagen, which is less elastic and much less hydrated with respect to the original molecule. It is from this condition that skin withering derives. Since it is a macromolecule, native collagen has practically no penetrating properties when applied on the skin surface. However, thanks to its filming features , it is an excellent phisiological means of maintaining an optimal degree of humidity of the horny layer and of reducing the loss of water from the skin surface which takes place as a result of "perspiratio insensibilis".

    Cosmetic properties

    • Hydrates strongly upper epidermis layers.
    • Action on the aspect of the skin : increases elasticity . prevents the formation of wrinkles , hydratates.

    Hyaluronic Acid
    This represent a glico-protein of the fundamental substance of the skin. His principal function is that of firmly binding considerable amounts of water inside the interfibre spaces and acting as a cementing agent for skin calls and fibres.

    This gives the skin a tense, elastic and moisturized appearance. It has been demonstrated that ageing produces a reduction in the amount of hyaluronic acid, which also becomes less polymerized and that, in turn causes a reduction in the amount of water in the tissues.

    A cosmetic treatment benefits from the application on the skin of small amounts of hyaluronic acid so that it can act on the upset water-tissue ratio, thus improving the turgidity and moisture of the horny layer. Therefor, hyaluronic acid and his salts are used for this specific moisturizing-filming function which allows the horny layer to keep in an excellent state.

    Cosmetic properties

    • Hydrates strongly upper epidermis layers.
    • Action on the aspect of the skin : increases elasticity . prevents the formation of wrinkles , hydratates.

    Retinyl Palmitate
    It is an ester of vitamin A , which is found in nature in the form of alcohol : retinol. Its esterified form is anyway the most suitable one for use in topic preparations on account of its stability.

    Vit.A has an positive influence on the growth, development and trophism of the epithelium'tissue thanks to its role in cellular division and in the synthesis of keratin : indeed, it accelerates the mititic activity of germinative cells and regulates the process of keratinization.

    The lack of vit.A actually produces an alteration of all epitheliums: the skin becomes hard, dry, scaly, pigmented, the epithelium becomes keratinized and the skin annexes are alterated. The cornea resents it as well, with reduced eyesight in the twilight.

    Cosmetic properties

    • Correction and stabilisation of the keratinisation process.
    • Regulation of skin dryness, skin irritation and skin metabolism.
    • Anti-wrinkle properties.

    From the chemical point of view, this is an alcohol and represents vitamin E. For its topic application , vit.E may be used both in the form of free alcohol (tocopherol) and in the form of an ester (tocopheryl acetate, tocopheryl nicotinate). Most important function is the prevention and slowing downof the formation of lipoperoxides from polyunsatired lipids, especially fat acids.

    Ageing of tissues has partly been attributed to the peroxidation of membrane lipids, which is an alteration determined by the so-called "free radicals", that is highly reactive molecular fragments which are also said to caused a degradation of the dermic fibres and nucleic acids.

    Studies with marked molecules have allowed scientists to state that vit.E penetrates whole into the skin , depositing particularly in the area of the dermis. It is therefor claimed that it is very efficacious in maintaining connective tissues in perfect condition.

    However, its principal function is that of reducing the formation of peroxides from unsatured fat acids which are present in the phospholipids of the biological membranes as a result of the action exercised by free radicals. Therefore, vit.E proves to be used biological antioxidant and, as a consequence, an important "anti-ageing" agent.

    Cosmetic properties

    • Anti-free radical effects
    • Fights aging damage .

    Natural Moisturizing Factor (N.M.F.) - Sodium Pyroglutamate
    N.M.F. is a substance of a hydrophilic nature which is naturally present in the horny layer . This generates from the destruction of the nucleus of the granuolous cell, of the various organs and of philagrine, which is a protein. It being impossible to extract the components of N.M.F. ( aminoacids of various types, urea, sugars and amino-sugars, salts, etc.), copies are produced with synthesis products which fall under the name of N.M.F. , and which are constructed from the functional point of view in perfectly identical form with the original molecule. The presence of N.M.F. in the dermis is very important since it is hydrophilic and hygroscopic.

    Cosmetic properties

    • Keeps the right degree of humidity in the horny layer .
    • Prevents an excessive dehydration of the keratinic blades.
    • Allows the skin surface to remain compact, elastic and flexible.

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