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What is cellular beauty? The beauty trend getting under your skin


TextSara Radin

‘Cellular beauty’ is a science-based trend driven by healthcare professionals, reframing the anti-aging marketing of the beauty business

A new beauty trend is rising that harnesses the power of science: see cellular beauty. “The idea behind cellular beauty is to support the cellular processes that occur within skin cells so that the skin can function optimally,” dermatologist Dr. Joshua Zeichner tells Dazed Beauty. According to him, antioxidants are foundational ingredients in cellular beauty. “Think of them like fire extinguishers that put out inflammation caused by free radicals,” he says.

“Cellular beauty generally refers to beauty and wellness products – both topical options and internal supplements – that support our well being and outward appearance on a cellular level,” says Mallory Huron, Beauty & Wellness Strategist at Fashion Snoops. “The main benefits, in theory, are that these products boost the health of your cells, enabling them to function better.”

This trend is happening, according to Huron, because we’re seeing a shifting desire among consumers to optimise their health, beauty, and wellbeing. “They increasingly want products that work smarter and more efficiently to generate a natural radiance and vitality, and work longer to more permanently improve our health,” she says. In her research, she’s found it’s the same appeal that’s driving the rise in nutricosmetics and ingestible beauty/wellness supplements – the idea of generating optimal health from the inside out is very appealing. “So, with cellular beauty, the idea of using a product – either as an internal supplement or an external topical – that is able to boost your skin’s functioning at a cellular level has the same attraction,” she says.

Our approach to beauty and wellness has become more fundamental, Huron explains, looking to the root causes behind topical beauty concerns, like stress, sleep, environment, and lifestyle. “What could be more fundamental than your cell health?” Cells are the building blocks of the body, and the thinking is that if we can improve their health, it provides a strong foundation for all healthy systems, like healthy skin, hair, and nails.

“Cosmetic chemists, dermatologists, nurses, and other healthcare and science professionals have really led the way within this space” – Mallory Huron

“Cellular beauty” specifically applies to a product claim, which is that the product is going to help improve your cell health in some fashion, so these products as a group aren’t made and don’t function in the exact same way. “However, from a product claim standpoint, these products promise to help your cells do any number of things: resist aging, oxidization, and environmental damage, and also to regenerate beauty-boosting essentials like collagen,” says Huron.

While the efficacy of these products is not totally clear due to a lack of regulation, a group of brands are pushing cellular beauty to the forefront. For example, skincare brand Haoma Earth works to naturally reverse signs of aging and boost skin health at a cellular level through potent, plant-based formulas that target root causes of cellular breakdown, like stress or environmental damage. In addition to slowing these processes, Huron says that Haoma’s formulas flood the skin with antioxidants and fortifying actives to help support cell health and make them more resilient long-term to breakdown. 

According to the trend forecaster, another great topical brand innovating within cellular health is CellularMd. Their whole brand is centered around their motto that “skincare is a science,” with products that preserve and protect the health of skin cells. “Their Universal Protection Drops help to not only safeguard skin cells against damage, but also supports them in becoming resilient against breakdown or environmental aggressors,” says Huron.

Next comes Elysium Health, which Huron says is really pushing the envelope in terms of how far supplements can go to truly reverse the effects of aging on a cellular level. Their two supplements – Matter and Brain – work to support the health and wellness of your cells and have shown promise to actually reverse certain aging processes. They also sell Index, an at-home Biological Age Test that can help determine how fast you’re aging (AKA how fast your cells are breaking down) relative to your age.

”Cellular beauty has entered the proverbial chat as a clever way to reframe the anti-aging beauty market” – Mallory Huron

Mindbodygreen’s Cellular Health supplement also contains many of the ingredients that are cited as working to slow or reverse cellular aging, like astaxanthin, phytoceramides, or CoQ10. “Another ingredient that is frequently cited as an effective cellular health supporter is resveratrol, which is derived from grapes,” says Huron. “Resveratrol is a powerful antioxidant, and brands like Caudalie put resveratrol front and center in their topical anti-aging formulas.”

Within this space, medical and healthcare influencers are shining. “Cosmetic chemists, dermatologists, nurses, and other healthcare and science professionals have really led the way within this space, and for good reason – they’re the innovators behind cutting-edge cell health technology,” says Huron. “Increasingly, we’re seeing consumers look to medical professionals and scientists as the new influencers, and more so with science-forward beauty trends like cellular health.” This is a very science-driven area of beauty and wellness, and we’re seeing a lot of biotech innovations within this space. 

Though Huron says that cellular health is a sneaky repackaging of the anti-aging movement. “We’ve seen anti-aging marketing change and morph as consumer preferences shift, to age-positive, age-neutral, or age-inclusive,” she explains. “Now, cellular beauty has entered the proverbial chat as a clever way to reframe the anti-aging beauty market.” Signs of aging are caused by cellular degeneration, therefore introducing a category of beauty and wellness products that promises to slow, pause, or even reverse that process is highly appealing. So ultimately, cellular beauty is all about looking younger, for longer.

“Certainly we expect to see this trend continue, as the biohacking movement (where you ‘hack’ your body to help it function more efficiently) gains steam,” Huron admits. “Moreover, we’re seeing a real interest among consumers to proactively address their health, and to implement routines, rituals, and products that can help address, prevent, and slow down problems before they arise.”

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