Many women, and men as well, desire ways to have firmer skin, more resilient hair, and stronger nails. The answer may be from within, with biotin and keratin.
Biotin is a vitamin B complex that helps the body metabolize protein. This vitamin is necessary for healthy skin and hair, as our hair and nails are made up of proteins, and it helps build thicker nails as well as stronger hair, increasing elasticity of the hair’s cortex preventing breakage, thickens cuticles and diameter of the hair shaft, as well as promotes hair growth.
Biotin has been well recognized for improving nail strength, with results of 25 percent increase in nail thickness with supplementation. It is important to note that it is not absorbed through the skin or through our hair, and needs to be ingested through our diet. A shampoo with biotin doesn’t really have any benefit to hair strength.
Keratin is an important structural component of our skin, hair, and nails. It is a protein that helps hold skin together firmly and prevent sagging, and also forms layers of our nails. Keratin is formed by keratinocytes, the living cells below our outer layers. The cells slowly push their way upwards as needed, eventually dying and forming a protective layer of cell.
Taking care of our skin can reduce the amount of keratin our body needs, as the harder we are on our skin, the faster we show signs of aging. We can also supplement our body with additional sources of keratin to have smoother skin and fuller hair. The difficulty has been in obtaining keratin that is both soluble as well as functional, and processed animal sources such as hooves have not provided much benefit for skin care.
A unique source of keratin has been developed from the wool of sheep in New Zealand. As it does not have to be processed significantly, it is retained in a natural bio-available form. Clinical studies have shown decreases in hair loss and improvements in hair strength in brightness with supplementing with the keratin source over a 3 month period.
So if looking to improve hair, skin, and nails, don’t overlook the building blocks of biotin and keratin.