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What is silica and why is it important for skin?

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It’s no secret that we love Silica. It’s the superstar ingredient in our range, and the key differentiator in our holistic approach to skincare. But… what actually is it?

What is silica?

Silica has the elemental name SiO2 - which means it’s one part silicon and two parts oxygen, and occurs naturally when the two elements meet. This happens a lot - oxygen and silicon are the Earth’s two most abundant elements. It’s what makes quartz crystals, opals, flint and granite - and those little sachets that come in new handbags and shoe boxes.

It’s also the third most abundant trace element in the human body after iron and zinc, so vitally important to many of our bodily processes.

It’s also definitely not silicone (with an e). Silicone is a factory-made substance that involves silicon, oxygen, carbon and hydrogen, and is used most famously in plastic surgery implants.

What are the benefits of silica?

Silica is actually imperative for skin regeneration and is strongly scientifically linked with healthy, youthful skin.

It helps red blood cells carry 20% more oxygen, and creates bonds between protein molecules which are responsible for the skin’s natural ability to hold water, and to repair and renew itself. If you want healthy, plump, fresh skin, silica is your new best friend.

Why is silica good for the skin?

Silica sits inside collagen, acting like glue. It provides strength and resilience but also flexibility, which is why it’s so helpful for skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis and acne. It’s natural anti-inflammatory properties keep your skin looking and feeling great - but also help keep nails, teeth and hair robust and healthy too.

Children have abundant levels of silica which is why they often have silky hair, soft skin and perfect nails. Our levels naturally decrease as we get older, so we’re literally losing the glue that holds us together as we age. That’s why we think it’s important to top ourselves up.

How can silica be consumed?

Silica is found naturally in dark leafy greens, leeks, green beans, cucumbers, celery and asparagus. That said, the body does find it difficult to break down silica from food, so supplements are recommended.

Our Jump Start supplements are a formidable blend of our alkalising silica salt complex, vitamins E and D3, calcium, folic acid and magnesium to create optimal conditions for skin health.

When is it important to consume silica?

Collagen production slows from around the age of 25, so those with ‘normal’ skin should start to supplement their levels from around their late 20s. If you have a skin condition that may benefit from a boost of silica, then you can use it preventatively before this time.

It takes around 12 weeks to start seeing a difference due to the rate that our skin regenerates, but when it does you should start to notice a brighter complexion with a youthful glow, firmer skin with more bounce and elasticity and less dryness. It also helps minimise pores, blemishes and wrinkles.

Hannah de Gruchy BSc(Hons)

About Author

Hannah de Gruchy is a freelancer writer who specialises in health and wellness. She has a keen interest in the biology of skin and loves using her words to help separate the real science of skincare from the pseudoscience of some skincare brands. Hannah has a degree in Human Biology and many years’ experience working in laboratories around London. Using this experience, Hannah enjoys turning complex science into interesting, engaging and easy to digest pieces to read. In her spare time, Hannah runs, practices yoga and loves cooking plant based foods.

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