Ten years ago, I visited Victoria Beckham’s facialist, Sarah Chapman, at her Chelsea clinic, where she treated my face to a massage, red-light therapy, serums and masks. On my way out, I was handed two bottles of pills: a supply of omega-3, 6, 7, 9 capsules and an antioxidant supplement for skin, hair and nails. Nothing unusual by 2019 standards, but in the noughties inside-out skincare was as rare as buttock injections.
What Chapman knew back then was that no matter how prepubescent my skin appeared post-facial, once I returned to my daily commute and questionable diet, my complexion would lose its cushiony, pearlescent finish pretty fast without some internal support.
Today, nutritional supplements have not only become part of our daily diets, they are a key element in any savvy woman’s skincare protocol. In fact, they’re considered so important to the health (ie youthful appearance) of our skin that facialists are bringing out their own skin supplements – and they’re selling as well as, if not better than, their topical cousins.
‘Supplements work at a cellular level to actively strengthen, revitalise and boost the quality of the skin, which is, after all, the largest organ in the body,’ says Chapman. But shouldn’t a plate of fresh vegetables and some oily fish be sufficient? No, according to Shabir Daya, pharmacist and co-founder of Victoria Health. ‘As we age, our digestive system produces less enzymes that break down food and extract nutrients, so we can have a nutritional gap – this is where supplements come in,’ he explains.
So what should we be taking for radiant, just-walked-off-a-mountain skin? At a minimum, all the experts recommend an omega-3 supplement to alleviate dryness, hyaluronic acid for improving suppleness and firmness, and antioxidants to fend off environmental toxins (like pollution and UV), which can damage the skin.
If you are over 40, ceramide capsules will help to rebuild the lipid barrier, which diminishes with age, whereas a magnesium supplement, to aid sleep, will encourage your skin cells to regenerate. And if you suffer with blemishes, zinc and B vitamins will help to boost the skin’s healing processes.
These are my five favourite skin supplements for ageless skin. Tried and trusted.
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