Thursday, August 19, 2021

Understanding Amino Acids , Peptides, Stem Cells And Growth Factors

Understanding Amino Acids , Peptides, Stem Cells And Growth Factors

Remember the days when your skincare facials routine consisted of simply washing your face with whatever soap was available and maybe slathering on some lotion afterward? 

Skincare facials have certainly evolved over the years, and the industry continues to make leaps and bounds when it comes to formulating the most effective, science-based products possible! 

With advances in the use of protein-based ingredients such as amino acids, peptides, stem cells, and growth factors, you can not only change the appearance of your skin but how it behaves. Sounds high-tech and futuristic? That’s because it is! 

If you have no idea what amino acids, peptides, stem cells, or growth factors are, don’t worry! The science behind how these substances are used in skincare is very complex. But in essence, it’s all about proteins! 

You may have heard that proteins are “the building blocks of life.” This is definitely true when it comes to your skin. Collagen is the protein that provides structure to the skin. Unfortunately, we produce less and less collagen as we age, and collagen fibers become increasingly disorganized, leading to sagging, wrinkled skin. 

While some skincare products contain collagen that can be applied topically, some of the more sophisticated skincare products on the market include ingredients that can also tell the skin to produce more collagen. 

But the importance of proteins in skin care goes far beyond collagen alone. 

Enter amino acids, peptides, stem cells, and growth factors. These special proteins can signal skin cells to do some pretty amazing things. Using any, or – even better – all can go much further in maintaining youthful skin than simply cleansing and moisturizing! 

At AskCares salon we are honored to offer our guests the latest and most innovative beauty treatments along with the classic, well-confirmed ones. 


Amino acids, the building blocks of proteins, play a significant role in various biological processes in the human body. Amino acids are indispensable for healthy skin. They are the building blocks of peptides and proteins and each amino acid performs a specific function in skincare. The easiest way to reap the benefits of amino acids is via the diet but it's also become clear that using amino acids in your skin routine gives you an extra boost.

Some types occur naturally in the skin and work together with aquaporins (the water transport system of your body) to transport moisture through the skin. Some amino acids work as an antioxidant, but most help your skin to reproduce its own antioxidants. 


Increase Water Retention: When used in conjunction with other ingredients, amino acids plump the skin by helping increase moisture. 

Protect the Skin Via Antioxidants: Amino acids promote cellular repair and provide antioxidant protection. 

Smooth Fine Lines: Amino acids in skincare can target various concerns to help soothe the skin, firm the skin, and diminish fine lines and wrinkles. Amino acids can combine together to form protein fragments known as peptides, which have been studied and proven to increase skin firmness and texture and reduce wrinkles when applied topically to the skin. 

Amino acids are great in a skincare regimen to help with collagen regeneration. The ingredient is most commonly found in facial creams, especially those for sensitive areas like around the eyes. If you would like to introduce these into your skincare routine, a moisturizer or eye cream would be a good place to start. 

When you're looking for amino acids in skincare specifically, some of the acids you want to look out for (the ones that work the best topically) are arginine, lysine, histidine, glycine, and leucine. They work the best with additional ingredients that help retain moisture in the skin, such as hyaluronic acid and glycerin. 

Whether produced internally or applied topically, amino acids help to strengthen the immune system, maintain the skin’s hydration, resilience, and overall healthy appearance. They protect skin from free-radical damage and reduce signs of aging. 


Peptides are one of the most talked-about ingredients in the field of anti-aging skincare. Peptides are mini-proteins, consisting of chains of 2 or more amino acids arranged like pearls on a necklace. Peptides formed in a certain pattern make specific proteins that function as messengers, allowing the epidermis and dermis to communicate efficiently to promote collagen synthesis.

However, as skin ages, communication diminishes, resulting in wrinkles, loss of firmness, and changes in texture. Peptides are like anti-aging keys that unlock skin cell surface receptors to open the doors of cellular communication and help skin repair itself. 

The science behind peptide use in the skincare industry is growing, and new synthetic peptides continue to be engineered, which means that you can find products containing peptides to meet your specific skin concerns. 


Less irritation: Peptides are not as irritating as other anti-aging ingredients such as tretinoin and retinol, which stress skin to promote collagen synthesis. 

Anti-aging results: With appropriate delivery systems, peptides signal the skin to produce more collagen and hyaluronic acid, which decline with age. 

Variety: The appropriate peptide must be selected for specific results, such as promoting collagen synthesis, targeting environmental damage, or diminishing wrinkles. In fact, the synthetic version of the peptide found in snake venom (Syn-ake) works similarly to Botox, temporarily impacting facial muscle contractions to prevent the formation of expression lines and wrinkles. 

Peptides are continually being synthesized in labs, so there is no single "best" anti-aging peptide. The most effective way to benefit from peptides is to ensure that they are combined with other anti-aging ingredients, such as hyaluronic acid, antioxidants, and stem cells. 


Stem cells in skincare are among the latest breakthroughs, with encouraging potential to help address common concerns associated with aging skin. Dermatologists have turned to stem cells to fight wrinkles and improve skin turnover and overall appearance. 

Stem cells are often harvested from human tissues for use in medical settings, but the stem cells used in skincare are typically derived from plants. These plant extracts have antioxidant properties which combat free radicals, one of the major agents of aging. 

They also provide superior nourishment for the skin and encourage cellular turnover, aka the appearance of new skin cells near the surface of the skin.

Cellular turnover is the process by which dead cells are sloughed off, leaving room for new skin cells to reach the top layer of the skin. This process slows as we age and can be further affected by environmental factors. By increasing cellular turnover, collagen production is increased and the skin looks plumper, smoother, and more luminous. 


Repair: Stem cells stimulate cellular growth and division, leading to collagen and elastin synthesis, filling out wrinkles, and slowing the development of new wrinkles. 

Prevention: Stem cells not only repair but also protect existing cells from damage. 

Source: Human stem cells may be more effective in activating wound healing and stimulating collagen synthesis, but plant stem cells (apple, grape, edelweiss, Alpine rose) may promote improvement due to antioxidant benefits. 

Stem cells function as a type of internal repair system. They work best with growth factors, which signal the stem cells to go to the targeted location and renew collagen, elastin, and epithelial cells. 


Growth factors are naturally occurring proteins that stimulate cellular renewal. When there is damage, cells produce growth factors that communicate to surrounding cells that repair is needed. In fact, growth factors were first used to treat patients in burn centers. 

Cells naturally secrete growth factors as signaling molecules that keep cells healthy and stimulate them to divide. However, the aging process leads to a decrease in growth factors. 

When growth factors are applied topically, the stratum corneum stimulates a repair message that goes into the dermis via a signaling cascade, stimulating fibroblasts to produce collagen and revitalize damaged or aging skin. 


Post-Care: Growth factors accelerate skin renewal during and after esthetic procedures that create stress to the skin such as micro-needling, lasers, and peels. 

Availability: Growth factors are a "must" for people over 30, who are already experiencing skin aging and environmental damage.

Source: Growth factors are most bio-active when derived from human sources (adipose tissue, amniotic membrane, baby foreskin) since they work with growth factors normally present in the skin. 

Some growth factors used in skincare include Epidermal Growth Factor (EGF) to accelerate healing, Fibroblast Growth Factor (FGF) to stimulate fibroblast production, Insulin-like Growth Factor (IGF) to promote cell growth, Keratinocyte Growth Factor (KGF) to stimulate epithelial cell growth, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor (PDGF) to regulate cell growth, and Transforming Growth Factor-Beta (TGF-β) to stimulate collagen secretion. Growth factors are often cocktailed with peptides, hyaluronic acid, antioxidants, and growth factor precursors—stem cells. 

Growth factors are an absolute "must" for clients over thirty, and especially for clients over forty whose aging skin is vulnerable after treatments such as micro-needling and peels. Professional protocols creating stress to the skin should include growth factors, stem cells, and peptides to supplement the skin's natural repair system. These ingredients should be applied during and after procedures to help prevent hyperpigmentation that can result from the skin that heals too slowly. 


When your skin is tight and glowing that is when you just illuminate beauty. AskCares is all about the beauty of the skin. 

Now that we’ve broken down the difference between peptides, stem cells, and growth factors, you can understand why and how to look for these ingredients when shopping for skincare products. As we have seen, each of these elements offers unique benefits that often work most effectively when used together, so you’ll want to look for formulas that contain a good amount of these active ingredients in some combination. 

We have an exclusive selection of Plant Stem Cell products from DR. JECORI’s Golden and Silver lines available in our store. 

Dr. JECORI Plant Stem Cells Silver is a whitening wrinkle improvement product based on plant cell callus culture from Edelweiss, Switzerland. 

Dr. JECORI Plant Stem Cells Golden combines both EGF / porphyrin/peptide ingredients to encourage increased collagen synthesis and is effective for skin elasticity and wrinkle improvement. It uses only raw materials that are EWG grade green, and it is a low-molecular ingredient that is effective for skin absorption

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