Antioxidants and the Skin – Book Review

Roger McMullen begins his acknowledgements by stating, “The task of bringing this text from concept/ideation to final manuscript required a great deal of effort and persistence.” After reading entirety of Antioxidants and the Skin, I completely understand that sentiment. This book is an extremely comprehensive look at antioxidants in relation to skin health and cosmetic formulation.


Antioxidant Book Chapters

The first three chapters ground the reader in the basics of skin physiology and biology along with free radical types and the skin’s endogenous innate antioxidant defense system. Chapter 4 introduces the impact of solar radiation on the skin. This chapter also describes many of the detrimental results of exposure to UV light including photosensitization and photocarcinogenisis while initiating a discussion
on the latest topic in sun protection, the effects of Visible and IR wavelengths.

Chapters 5, 6 and 7 provide detailed information on methods for measuring oxidation and antioxidant capability. Chapter 8 brings together all the information from the preceding chapters to review the use of antioxidants in skin care, both orally and topically administered. Finally, chapter 9 provides succinct information about the physical and chemical properties of 34 common antioxidants used in cosmetics.

The incorporation of stability information, extremely useful to formulators, makes Antioxidants and the Skin a great book to keep within reach in the cosmetic lab. As consumers continue to demand more from cosmetics, it’s certain the addition of antioxidants to formulations will grow. Additionally the popularity of natural fats and oils in cosmetics will continue to make knowledge of antioxidants an important asset.

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