An Oral Supplement That Softens Skin and Reduces Wrinkles

Several diet supplements are marketed with claims of anti-wrinkle and anti-aging benefits, but no concrete studies have proven their efficacy. This study investigated the anti-aging effect on the skin, after intake of supplements containing antioxidants and other beneficial minerals. The results showed a significant improvement in skin coarseness and finer wrinkles amelioration after intake of the supplement, as compared to a minor change in those consuming dummy supplements. The authors conclude, “The oral dietary supplement containing antioxidants, minerals, and glycosaminoglycans improved skin roughness and fine wrinkles, but did not affect skin color change in female volunteers.”

Skin aging involves roughness of the skin with age, wrinkle formation, skin looseness, or laxity, pigmentation or development of spots and even development of skin tumors. Some skin aging is due to exposure to UV radiation from the sun and leads to yellowing and also development of skin cancers. The market is flooded with dietary supplements that supposedly possess anti-aging properties and offer other benefits to the body. But no definite studies have shown these benefits on skin aging. Substances like Coenzyme Q 10, glycosaminoglycans etc. have had beneficial effects on skin aging. This study attempted to test a dietary supplement containing these elements and other antioxidants, to see if they reduced various skin aging features in women.


  • For the study, a total of 60 women from Thailand, in the 35-60 age group, were selected.
  • The women were divided randomly into two groups, comprising 30 women each. The women did not know whether they were consuming the dietary supplement or were on dummy therapy. They took the therapy once a day, for 12 consecutive weeks.
  • The depth of rough skin and fine wrinkles were assessed in all the participants throughout the study. The participating women were also asked questions about their personal opinions regarding their skin changes after the therapy.

Key findings

  • Before the study, the average depth of skin coarseness was measured to be 100.5 and 100 micrometers in the study and dummy groups respectively. At the completion of the study, there was a 21.2% improvement in skin roughness and finer wrinkles in the supplement group, as compared to 1.7% improvement with dummy therapy.
  • When asked, most women did not report significant improvement in skin color after supplement or dummy therapy intake. But many of these women felt that there was an improvement in their skin pore depth and size.
  • There were no side-effects in any of the participants, throughout the study.

Next steps/Shortcomings
The authors agree that this study failed to show any benefits in terms of skin spotting or pigmentation. They say that this could be due to the composition of the supplements, which were different from previous studies that had shown benefits in this aspect. Although the participants were asked about side-effects, detailed blood and urine tests were not performed. Future studies should inspect safety issues in detail.

This study on 60 Thai female volunteers tested a dietary supplement, which contained antioxidants and other beneficial elements, for its efficacy in preventing skin aging. The supplement, containing “antioxidants (coenzyme Q10, beta-carotene, grape seed extract, French maritime pine bark extract, green tea extract, d-alpha-tocopheryl acetate), minerals (zinc, selenium)” and glycosaminoglycans, has been shown to decrease roughness of the skin, associated with aging. It was shown to decrease finer wrinkles of the skin. The different components of the supplement may interact to give the skin extra protection against oxidative damage. It may also prevent degradation of skin and connective tissue proteins. Since improvement in skin aging parameters were seen as early as week 4 of treatment, future studies need to determine an optimum duration for similar treatments.

For More Information:
An Oral Nutraceutical Containing Antioxidants, Minerals and Glycosaminoglycans Improves Skin Roughness and Fine Wrinkles
Publication Journal: International Journal of Cosmetic Science, 2009
By M Udompataikul; P Sripiroj
From the Srinakharinwirot University, Bangkok, Thailand

*FYI Living Lab Reports Are Summaries of the Original Research.

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