Stem cells, the controversial healthcare topic for the past several years, are now causing a buzz in the skincare world. However, cosmetic labs and skincare specialists are not using embryonic stem cells, the ones that have caused much discussion and debate, but are creating products with specialized peptides and enzymes that, when applied topically on the surface; help stimulate the skin’s storage of stem cells.
It is believed that the skin contains a ratio of approximately 1 in 10 to 1 in 10,000 stem cells, which are easily accessible and are found near hair follicles and sweat glands. As well as in skin, stem cells are found in bone marrow, the brain, liver and muscle. These specialized cells are dormant until they “receive” signals from the body to begin the repair mode. In skincare, the use of topical products will stimulate the stem cell to split into two types of cells: a new, similar stem cell and a “daughter” cell, which is able to create almost every kind of new cell in a specialized system. This means that the stem cell can receive the mes-sage to create proteins, carbohydrates and lipids to help repair fine lines, wrinkles and restore and maintain firmness and elasticity.
As with any new skincare discovery, doctors, dermatologists and cos-metic labs are divided on this action of stimulating skin stem cells. Some doctors argue that creating compounds that keep the cell on “go” could lead to disastrous consequences, such as cancer or mutated cell chro-mosomes. Others believe that over time, stem cells slow down and be-come less likely to receive the repair signals, thus the need to create moisturizers and serums to strengthen and maintain stem cell activity.
Olga Filatova (pictured above)
Aesthetic Educator at Bellus Academy
Internationally Licensed Aesthetician