Sure, you’ve heard the word before. But with so many skincare terms out there these days, why should you care about ceramides in particular? And more importantly, what can ceramides do for you? Let’s take a look at this underrated yet powerful ingredient.
What the heck are ceramides in skincare?
In brief, ceramides are lipids (fat molecules) that occur naturally in the uppermost layer of your skin, aka the epidermis. Ceramides make up a surprising 50% of the epidermis, so they’re pretty critical for healthy skin functioning. They form the “cement” that keeps skin cells together, creating a protective skin barrier from external damage. Not only that, but ceramides act as natural moisturizers, keeping skin supple and soft.
Why do ceramides matter?
Ceramides essentially shield the skin from all types of skin stressors - such as environmental pollutants and dirt - while retaining moisture. However, ceramide levels decrease with age, and we’re typically left with less than 50% of them by the time we reach 40. UV exposure can also weaken the functioning of ceramides. When our natural ceramides get compromised, the skin is prone to dryness as well as environmental threats. This can trigger off a whole host of new skin issues, including the development of skin irritation in adulthood (eczema, we’re looking at you!).
Replenish ceramides with skincare regimen
Before you panic, here’s the good news: there is a very viable solution. Ceramides are replenished easily with the right skincare regimen. Skincare products formulated with ceramides fortify the skin barrier and restore hydration overtime. This means, you can expect plumper, firmer skin with fewer visible signs of aging, along with reduced skin sensitivity.
Can all skin types benefit from ceramides?
Yes! Ceramides naturally exist in everyone’s skin, so when applied topically, they are easily recognized and absorbed by the skin - no matter the skin type. If you have sensitive skin and you’re still on the fence, remember this: Ceramides provide structure to the skin that keep stressors out. It’s deterioration of ceramides that weaken the skin’s defenses and often result in skin sensitivity. The more vulnerable your skin, the more you might need to give ceramides a shot.
Can ceramides be used with other ingredients?
Yes. In fact, ceramides work best when applied in conjunction with other skin-replenishing ingredients. Ceramides are mighty heroes when it comes to repairing the skin barrier and locking in moisture, but since no single ingredient can accomplish all your skin needs, it’s important to look for products that combine ceramides with other potent ingredients. More on that below.
Our recommended skincare products
If you’re new to ceramides or simply looking to step up your ceramide game, we recommend the La Vie Précieuse collection. The entire line takes advantage of a unique variety of ceramides derived from apples grown straight on their farm in Aomori, a northern region of Japan. In addition to ceramides, each product is filled with nourishing proteoglycan and glycyrrhizinate (Tsugaru licorice root), which work together with ceramides to hydrate, soften, and brighten the skin. We also love how their products instantly penetrate yet nourish thirsty skin. Goodbye, sticky residue!