Costhetics coverage of cosmetic surgery and other aesthetic enhancement news and information typically focuses on services provided by professionals.
Today, however, we are looking at a new trend in skin care called biohacking. Advocates point to a wide range of activities that help people use and influence their body’s own natural biological processes to promote radiant skin.
What Is Biohacking & Who Are the Hackers?
Biohacking centres on the concept that people have the power to gain control of their bodily systems (hack) and then tweak them for optimum function and optimal health. It is a two-step process that relies on:
- Lifestyle changes
Self-monitoring and the range of innovative digital devices that make it possible are essential to biohacking. They provide feedback to help us assess the effectiveness of the changes we make in order to customise our skin routine. This is especially appealing to a generation of consumers dedicated to bespoke products, tailored specifically to their needs.
Biohacking is an evolving field with players that range from respected medical professionals to TikTok teenagers. Be careful where you get your online advice. Well-meaning amateurs who don’t understand how biohacking relates to traditional medicine often suggest quick fixes with long-term negative consequences.
3 Reliable Bio Hacks from the Experts
If you’re considering dipping your toe into biohacking for skin care, it’s important to look for ideas that build on what professionals would consider common knowledge for skin anti-ageing. The best bio hacks revolve around:
- Circulation – Science tells us that anything that boosts the flow of blood to your skin contributes to a healthy glow. Biohackers are using this data to develop massage techniques based on the benefits of facial manipulation and how the skin can be trained to heal itself.
- Cleanliness – Dead surface skin cells are responsible for everything from skin dullness to skin dryness. Biohackers are analysing cleanser and moisturiser ingredients to create formulations that are naturally skin-friendly.
- Collagen – Biohackers and skin care professionals are in accord that as age increases, collagen decreases, leaving the skin dull and deflated. Biohackers are working to find ways to improve gut health and, in turn, improve collagen production in facial skin.
Biohackers Agree: Just Say No to These 3 Ingredients
Just as you have to be on the lookout for bad biohackers disguised as good biohackers, you need to know how to spot a dangerous skincare formulation. The three ingredients listed below can turn a well-intended bio hack into a skin care disaster:
- Dioxins – These substances have been linked to reproductive problems and issues with the immune system.
- Parabens – Methylparaben, propylparaben, and butylparaben are some of the chemical preservatives known as parabens. They are known endocrine disruptors and the anti-thesis of smart biohacking. Avoid them in all forms.
- Phthalates – Commonly used as dissolving agents, phthalates are highly toxic and have been shown to be carcinogenic.
Many new top quality skin care brands are ensuring they contain no nasties and are also vegan and cruelty free.
Biohacking with A-Listers
Futuristic clinics located around the world are eager to embrace biohacking. Once the destination for full-body pampering, they have become wellness hubs that marry technology, medicine and science to improve health and beauty.
- Clinique La Prairie, Switzerland – The clinic claims that its Revitalisation Premium programme provides the world’s most advanced (and possibly most expensive) anti-ageing and longevity treatment. At €37,321, it may well be the most expensive. A visit lasts seven days and guests enjoy treatments based on the “rejuvenating science of cell therapy.” DNA testing ensures the most personalised treatment possible.
- BelleCell, UK – BelleCelle is known for extreme procedures. They offer anti-ageing ‘cocktails’ filled with nutrients and antioxidants delivered via IV drips directly into system. Stem cell facial lifts are also on the menu, using a radio frequency hand-piece to massage facial skin. It even offers stress-busting treatments in the form of virtual reality experiences, and zero gravity massage chairs.
- Upgrade Labs, US – Like a Las Vegas casino, this centre offers more than a dozen high tech bio hack-based treatments. They offer skin tightening cryotherapy, where guests spend up to three minutes in a freezing cold chamber. For those who prefer heat, an ozone sauna places guests in a pod and hyper-oxygenates them with a face mask that feeds pure O3.
Biohacking Back Home
What Costhetics loves most about biohacking is how much power it gives us to make our skin (and our lives) better. In addition to all manners of bio hacks provided by professionals, there are plenty of things we can all do to tweak our natural biology and give our skin a boost:
- Go into the Light – A daily dose of Vitamin D (which your skin makes naturally when exposed to UV rays) contributes to skin cell growth, repair, and metabolic function. It even helps destroy free radicals that accelerate skin ageing.
- Do Something Fishy – Fatty fish including salmon, mackerel, and herring are rich in omega-3 fatty acids which work to keep skin thick, supple, and moisturised. Fatty fish also contain vitamin E, one of the most important antioxidants for skin.
- Take a Deep Breath – Oxygen is the great healer. It stimulates the body to repair itself from injury, it has anti-inflammatory properties, it’s antibacterial and it stimulates collagen production. (What’s not to love?) Exercise is a great way to get oxygen flowing through your veins. Not up for a trip to the gym? That’s okay. Just make sure to take a few deep, controlled breaths every few hours.
- Sleep Well – A study in Clinical and Experimental Dermatology found that people who slept seven to nine hours a night had stronger skin that could protect itself better and heal itself better after trauma compared to those who slept five hours or less.
Biohacking – Old and New
Biohacking sounds new, but it isn’t really. Many biohacking techniques have been with us for centuries: fasting, juice cleanses, meditation. What’s changed is the cutting-edge technology and data we can access to help us optimise our bodies. The beauty of biohacking is that you can start small and still get big rewards.
What can you do today to make your skin glow?