Prolonged exposure to ultraviolet rays is the major cause of skin damage, leading to injury and premature aging. Photons from solar radiation activate a chain reaction that leads to the interaction of free radicals with proteins and lipids.
In cosmetics several strategies are followed to fight against the damage produced by solar radiation, one of them is the formulation with antioxidants.
The ferulic acid is a natural antioxidant found in the cell walls of plants exposed to the sun, such as wheat and rice, and fruits such as oranges and apples, and acts by protecting the cells from oxidation.
In tissues, ferulic acid is able to eliminate several types of free radicals, especially those known as “superoxide”, “hydroxyl radical” and “nitric oxide”. This makes it an effective antioxidant, anti-aging and UV protector. In addition, ferulic acid inhibits the activity of the MMP-1 enzyme, and as a result helps to preserve the skin’s natural elasticity.
Another cosmetic application of ferulic acid is in products to lighten skin tone, since ferulic acid is a tyrosinase inhibitor, which reduces melanin production and therefore is a skin whitening active ingredient.
There is scientific evidence on the effectiveness of ferulic acid: in several studies it has been shown that the combination of ferulic acid with vitamin C and E improves sun protection and mitigates the appearance of wrinkles. The effectiveness of ferulic acid as an anti-oxidation regulator has also been studied, being able to reverse the effects of aging and reconstruct the extracellular matrix.