Arginine is an amino acid known most amongst athletes. Traditionally taken in supplement form, arginine is often consumed before and during a workout to increase blood flow and oxygen delivery exercise (Livestrong). For those who prefer a more natural approach, L-arginine is commonly found in dairy, beef, poultry, fish and nuts.
When it comes to skin care, “arginine skin care” may not be a term you hear as often as, say, arginine in your gym or store that carries bodybuilding protein, but that doesn’t mean it’s not equally as important!
What is Arginine?
Arginine is an amino acid that is naturally found in many cells of the body. Arginine plays a pivotal role in cell division, the healing of wounds, immune function, the release of hormones, and the production of growth hormone (Truth in Aging).
The body uses arginine to produce nitric oxide, which in turn causes the blood vessels to dilate, increasing blood flow. Coupled with the fact that the liver uses arginine to produce muscle-pumping creatine, arginine is commonly found in bodybuilding proteins.
As you age, your natural stores of arginine are depleted as you produce less arginine, and are also able to retain less of it. This is why it is valuable to supplement arginine in the form of foods, supplements, or skin care.
L-Arginine is Naturally Found in the Skin, May Increase Blood Flow and Hydration
Within the skin and hair, it is no surprise that arginine has been shown to increase blood flow as well. Early research has shown arginine is effective for a skin condition known as atopic dermatitis. In the study, researchers studied the effects of a topical 2.5% arginine hydrochloride ointment for its effects on transepidermal water loss (TEWL), urea content in the stratum corneum, and overall skin hydration. Those with atopic dermatitis who used the ointment for 4 weeks saw an increase in urea content as well as a continual increase in skin hydration (Hautarzt).
How Does Arginine Work in the Skin?
Arginine is thought to work in three ways in the skin.
First, studies demonstrate that arginine is a human growth hormone (HGH) enhancer. As you age, you produce substantially less hormones, including human growth hormone (Journal of Clinical Investigation, 1981). And that’s a shame, because HGH has been found to increase skin thickness due to heightened activity of fibroblasts (Dermatology, 1996). By stimulating the body to produce more HGH, arginine may help the skin look younger.
Second, arginine functions as an antioxidant (Journal of Surgical Research, June 2002). As you all know, antioxidants work by fending off free radicals before they can damage DNA.
Third, arginine may simply help with hydration within the skin. There is evidence that amino acids like arginine can bind to moisture in the skin and the environment.
What is the Best Arginine Skin Care?
The best arginine skin care will include the active form of arginine, as well as other amino acids that work in conjunction with arginine.
L-amino acids are the active form of amino acids (Analytical Biochemistry). In fact, other forms of amino acids, such as D-amino acids, are not able to be utilized in amino acid skin care (Analytical Biochemistry), no matter what other brands tell you.
To know whether a brand uses L-amino acids in their products, it’s simple. The ingredients list will state “L-arginine” instead of simply “arginine.”
On the other hand, you also need 16 additional amino acids to “feed” the skin what it needs to build collagen, elastin, and other proteins. Using L-arginine skin care alone may have some effect, but using arginine in conjunction with other amino acids is best.
Arginine skin care may be capable of all of the following:
- Increase HGH production in the skin;
- Serve as an antioxidant;
- Hydrate the skin;
- Assist in wound healing.
Based on these studies, a strategy of using arginine skin care could be very beneficial to aging skin. We recommend ourAminoGenesis Core 4 Routine. The line is a superior one that is loaded with arginine and 16 other amino acids that may help to make your skin healthy and youthful looking. No other arginine skin care formulation can achieve this level of perfection!