SKIN HRT- A novelty method to stop and reverse skin aging
During menopause facial skin undergoes dramatic changes such as increased laxity, dryness and thinning of the skin, wrinkles become more profound and perioral, or smokers’ lines appear even in women that never smoked. Pinkish natural “blusher,” typical for youthful skin disappears, and skin becomes pale as well as the complexation resembles sallow look.
These changes are gradual in the perimenopausal period, but once menopause sets in, they usually worsen rapidly, making every menopausal woman extremely aware of these unwanted features. Even more recently, as we are experiencing the alarming occurrence of premature menopause (sometimes as early as the thirties!) Women who had surgically removed ovaries are also at risk as they will develop surgical menopause.
Why skin ages during menopause?
Evidence has shown that menopausal skin loses Collagen type I and II as much as 30% in the first five menopausal years. Changes in the skin collagen lead to diminished elasticity and skin strength, making the skin saggy. This changes typically transpires at the time when the Estrogen level dramatically drop in women’s body. Estrogen governs 400 functions in the body and keeping the skin youthful, tight and glowing is one of them. If Estrogen is not produced anymore, as it happens in menopause, the skin will lose all these qualities.
Estrogen receptors in the skin
Estrogen activity in the skin is the receptor-mediated process, and the evidence suggests that ER-beta receptor is predominantly involved. As we age, the lack of Estrogen makes these receptors less stimulated, and their effect in keeping the skin young eventually stops. Estrogen receptor beta is highly expressed in keratinocytes, blood vessels, and dermal fibroblasts and these structures are vital in keeping the collagen content intact, preventing wrinkles and giving the skin a radiant look. Estrogen receptor -beta action increases the transcription of antioxidant enzyme genes. This process leads to increased antioxidant activity and terminates free radical damaging event in the skin that usually happens from intrinsic aging and sun exposure. We can confidently endorse Estrogen as the most potent “anti-oxidant”!
Majority of women seek various aesthetic procedures at the time when sagging skin becomes progressive, and few wrinkles become deeper or deteriorate rapidly. If asked or if pointed out to them, they will confirm that all that happens at the time when Estrogen rapidly drops, and the hypo-estrogenic state becomes their reality. And although aesthetic procedures (Botox, fillers, radio- frequencies, peels, lasers) can make a significant change to aging skin, they cannot, however, stop or reverse the process. The same applies to different cosmeceuticals that can target different structures and pathways in skin aging slowing down the process, but they are not designed to reverse the skin aging.
Treating the cause with skin HRT
The main principle in integrative medicine is to discover and treat the cause of any bodily dysfunction, including aging. In this case, it is an Estrogen deficiency and absence of Estrogen beta-receptor stimulation. Naturally, treating the cause would be to apply systemic HRT (hormone replacement therapy) or topical HRT. Although Okinawa observational study on centenarians has proven the effectiveness of systemic HRT in combating aging and improving organ and tissue repair, systemic HRT has been an ongoing controversial topic. This problem is mostly due to the well-established risk of breast cancer from conventional HRT and non-acceptance of using more effective and less dangerous bio-identical HRT by conventional physicians.
Additionally, using systemic bio-identical HRT requires substantial knowledge in integrative medicine and endocrinology, and it is not practical to be used by aesthetic doctors for skin aging. Therefore, in searching for the adequate solution for menopause-related skin aging the scientist came up with a topical bio-identical HRT! This topical formulation contains Estrogen, mainly Estriol that has high binding capacity towards beta receptors in the skin.
Extensive research concluded that applications of topical Estrogen (skin HRT):
- increase collagen content and decrease skin sagging
- improve skin hydration
- increase capillary blood flow (youthful glow)
- enhance wound healing
- increase skin protection from sun damage
- diminish wrinkles and pores
- rapidly improve smoker’s lines
- attenuate skin aging in all levels
Topical Estrogen can be used in all hypo estrogenic conditions such as menopause, premature aging, surgical menopause, etc.The publications have also stipulated that there was no significant increase in serum hormone levels in the once daily application of topical Estrogen on the facial skin, therefore have established the safety of this type of application. Simply, this formulation stays and works only in the skin.
In conclusion, the evidence suggests a strongly beneficial effect of skin HRT containing Estrogen in safely retarding skin aging, that an aesthetic doctor can prescribe for you.
References available on request