By: Dr. Andrew J. Rochman
These days, the new trend in skin care and anti aging treatments is the use of stem cell therapy. Stem cells is the new buzz word as cosmetic companies market their products with the promise of helping to attain youthful skin again. But how much of it is actually true? Let’s finds out.
Stem cells are the cells in the body that have the ability of self-renewal and regeneration. These cells have the potential of forming any kind of cells in the body depending on the conditions.
The human cells naturally contain stem cells that have the potential for renewing themselves and are actively involved in skin repair and regeneration. However, these stem cells slow down with the passage of time as we grow older. They are also highly sensitive to external factors, such as UV rays and oxidative stresses in the body.
What Stem Cells Are Used In Skin Care Treatments?
Normally, plant stem cells are used in skin care treatments. However, these treatments contain the stem extracts from the plants and are therefore different from the ‘stem cells’ that are involved in self repair. This is a misunderstanding that forces consumers to think the product they are using contains stems cells. The use of human embryonic stem cells is banned in the US; however, there are a few companies that are using non-embryonic stem cells in skin treatments (Your Skin?, 2014).
Do Stem Cell Therapies Actually Work?
Unfortunately, there is not enough evidence to be certain about the effectiveness of stem cell therapy. There are some studies that suggest that stem cell treatments tend to increase cell turnover and enhance the production of collagen, but there is not enough evidence to prove these studies to be true. Despite this, some users say that those stem cell-based anti aging treatments are better than conventional anti aging treatments.
Combination Of Plant And Adult Stem Cells
In a recent development by Derma Tech a research lab has discovered a powerful therapy that combines adult stems and plant stem cell as a skin care treatment. This product, known as ‘StemCore-3 Complex’, contains powerful growth factors and other molecules commonly found in healthy tissues of the body that promote rapid growth of collagen and improves the overall health of skin by stimulating cell growth. The main ingredients are said to be cytokinal peptides that help to promote the growth of collagen fibroblasts, ECM, keratinocytes and regenerate skin cells. It is being marketed as an all-natural, organic product that involves ethical use of stem cells to fight signs of aging (USA, 2014).
Despite all the frenzy surrounding stem cell use in modern cosmetology, some doctors say the best product for your skin are peptides that are capable of mimicking skin epidermal cells to repair and renew skin cells (Fashion.telegraph.co.uk, 2014). However, it is important to note that these products do not stop the aging process of the skin; rather, they only slow it down.
Fashion.telegraph.co.uk, (2014). Stem cells in skincare: the low-down – Telegraph. [online] Available at: http://fashion.telegraph.co.uk/beauty/news-features/TMG10194757/Stem-cells-in-skincare-the-low-down.html [Accessed 19 May. 2014].
USA, C. (2014). ‘First’ skin care line combines BOTH human adult and plant stem cells. [online] CosmeticsDesign.com USA. Available at: http://www.cosmeticsdesign.com/Formulation-Science/First-skin-care-line-combines-BOTH-human-adult-and-plant-stem-cells [Accessed 19 May. 2014].
Your Skin?, W. (2014). What Can Stem Cells Really Do For Your Skin?. [online] Beautylish. Available at: http://www.beautylish.com/a/vxawr/stem-cells-in-skin-care [Accessed 19 May. 2014].