Erase your wrinkles, shrink your pores, eliminate skin texture: chances are, you’re so used to seeing these messages that you don’t even pause when you read them. But take a second to look again at those verbs: erase, shrink, eliminate. Since its inception, the skin care industry has told us that we should want our skin to be less–less textured, less noticeable, less human. The ideal, they say, is glass skin or a porcelain complexion–something as lifeless as stone itself.
Most of us know the history of these impossible beauty standards and the difficult legacy of misogyny, racism, and agism that they represent. And yet, it's difficult to deny the hold these standards still have on our self-image. Despite many inspiring social movements–from skin neutrality to #melaninpoppin–the pressure remains firm. An estimated 11 million people have used Botox to date and the anti-aging market is worth $60 billion globally.1,2
So how can we begin to think about our skin differently? How can we appreciate our skin for all that it does for us throughout our lives? As longevity researchers, we think the key to reframing our relationship with our skin starts with science. Join us as we explore a new paradigm where we stop asking our skin to be less and start allowing it to be more: stronger, healthier, and more resilient. Ready to take on the world with us through every stage of life.
Skin Beyond Aesthetics: The Scientist’s Perspective
As scientists, we see skin as so much more than just what meets the eye. Skin is the body’s largest organ and its first line of defense against environmental aggressors that can have a negative impact on whole-body health–from pathogens and toxins to UV rays. In addition to keeping our delicate internal environment safe from outside forces, skin also plays a number of important roles in regulating body temperature, hydration levels, and even bone and hormonal health through the production of vitamin D. Plus, skin is our main sensory organ, responding to all kinds of stimuli–from the pain of a hot stove to the joy of a warm hug– to help us understand and interact with the world around us.
Why Healthy Skin is More Not Less
While the beauty industry may tell us that skin needs to be less in order to be beautiful, from a scientist’s perspective, improving skin health is actually about making skin more–more resilient, more protective, and more efficient at repairing the unavoidable damage that occurs throughout our lives. Improvements in epidermal thickness, barrier function, and hydration levels are all markers of skin health. It’s only as a result of these improvements that aesthetic changes–like smoother texture, clearer tone and fewer wrinkles–really matter. Otherwise, visible improvements are not always a sign of deeper skin health.
Building a Healthier Relationship with Our Skin
Healthy skin is not perfect. Fine lines, clogged pores, and uneven skin tone are normal signs that you are a living person covered in a living organ. Skin will change almost constantly throughout our lives, responding to our environment, our lifestyle, and our physical and mental wellbeing. Denying our skin the right to change also denies all the wonderful things that it provides for us–the feeling of grass under our feet or raindrops on our faces, the ability to weather cold winter nights, the joy of crinkle-eyed laughs. Having gratitude for all of these experiences means having gratitude for our skin, too.
Reinventing Skin Care for a New Era
Redefining our relationship with our skin starts by partnering with it, rather than treating it like a problem that needs to be solved. Most of us do not struggle with major skin diseases or disorders. Rather, we have the enormous privilege of simply maintaining an organ that is already healthy and functional. This means we can do less to fight against its natural function–supporting our skin as it ages rather than working against it.
This is the approach to skin health that powers OneSkin. Rather than overloading your skin with ten-step regimens or harsh active ingredients, we believe in the power of simple rituals backed by validated research. Our Topical Supplements, powered by the OS-01 peptide, help your skin be more – boosting epidermal thickness, supporting barrier function, and improving aging markers at the molecular level*
. It’s a new approach to skin care where the products you use work to improve your skin health first–resulting in visible improvements that are more than surface-deep.
Reframing your relationship with your skin is no small task. But every time you remember to appreciate your skin as a vital part of your health, your experiences, and your story, you’re one step closer to dismantling damaging beauty standards. Join us in welcoming a new era where skin of all ages, tones, and appearances is seen as healthy, beautiful and appreciated.
* Shown in lab-grown ex vivo human skin models