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Liquid oxygen: everything you need to know

Liquid oxygen is the new super ingredient that’s taking the beauty world by storm. But what are the skin benefits?

Oxygen is essential for life–it is also crucial for healthy skin. “Your skin needs sufficient oxygen levels to stay healthy and youthful,” says Dr Ross Perry, EV Expert and Aesthetic Doctor at Cosmedics, London. “Well oxygenated skin looks firmer, plumper and smoother in appearance. But, as we age, oxygen levels decrease which causes the cell renewal process to slow down.”

Scarily, by the age of 40, skin loses 60 per cent of its oxygen capacity.  “Oxygen is transported to the skin via the bloodstream," continues Dr Perry. "So, a poorer blood supply, combined with other factors such as harmful UV rays, environmental pollution and unhealthy lifestyle choices, means that less oxygen and fewer nutrients are available to the skin’s surface. This gradual decline in oxygen causes skin to look more tired, dull, lacklustre, lined and dry looking.”

While healthy diet, lifestyle and regular exercise can go a long way to help keep skin oxygenated, there are also additional skincare tactics you can try. Until recently, the only option in oxygen skincare was the oxygen facial, where the practitioner sprays a stream of high-pressurised stream of oxygen onto the skin.

Oxygen facials were first made popular by celebrities such as Madonna, Jennifer Aniston and Kim Kardashian–all one time devotees of the Oxylight Facial, which combines oxygen with LED therapy. Miley Cyrus was a fan of the O2 Lift and Ashley Graham has even used New York Facialist Mzia Shiman’s signature oxygen facial to give her boobs a boost.

Liquid oxygen – what is it?

There's now a new super ingredient that’s taking the beauty world by storm. Liquid oxygen (the gas in liquid form) is the latest skincare innovation that enables oxygen to be applied topically to the skin.

Oxygen has many benefits for the skin. Along with increasing cellular turnover and collagen production, it has an anti-inflammatory, detoxifying effect and may be used to minimise fine lines and pores, smooth and brighten the skin and reduce the appearance of acne and blemishes.

“Liquid oxygen is formulated with medical grade oxygen to penetrate the skin transdermally,” shares Dr Perry. Liquid oxygen which has been used topically in medicine since the 1920s, but it’s only now making an appearance in skincare products.

Medical grade oxygen is of the highest purity. It is used topically for medical treatments such as wound healing.  In one study (Dermatology Practical & Conceptual, 2018) it was shown that liquid oxygen may help to treat mild to moderate acne and promote clearer skin. Oxygen has antibacterial properties that can help to kill p.acnes (propionibacterium acnes), the bacteria that causes acne.

“Liquid oxygen can help to heal the skin and is effective for acne,” says Dr Perry. “It delivers oxygen straight into the skin, and when used with other ingredients, such as salicylic acid, these go deep into the pores, leaving skin, clear, radiant and rejuvenated.”

Liquid v facial – how do they compare?

But, how does liquid oxygen skincare compare to oxygen facials? “There has been some debate in how much oxygen the skin actually absorbs through traditional oxygen facials and other therapies which use the gaseous form," says Dr Perry.

"But, because liquid oxygen is used topically it allows the product to go direct and deeper into the skin’s layers. It can also be combined alongside other skin boosting ingredients and, because it can be used at home on a regular basis, the benefits are better.”

5 liquid oxygen skincare products to try

Natura Bisse Oxygen Complex Serum is a mattifying serum formulated with stabilised hydrogen peroxide which transforms into pure oxygen and water to hydrate, smooth, rejuvenate and brighten your complexion.

Exuviance Illuminating Oxygen Facial is an oxygenating mask containing pure essential oxygen combined with an exclusive 'Bionic Blend' of youth-promoting ingredients (lactobionic acid and gluconolactone polyhydroxy acid) to detoxify stressed skin, restore radiance, suppleness and softness. Use three-to-four times a week.

111 Skin Oxygen Express Mask is formulated with clinical grade oxygen, ATP and five active complexes, to refresh, brighten and tighten skin. Will also calm irritated skin and reduce redness.

Element Eight Active Serum contains 12 per cent liquid oxygen and 8 per cent niacinamide to stimulate microcirculation, enhance cell metabolism, reduce pores and improve skin's brightness, tone and appearance.

Beauty Pie Oxygen Instant Facial Refuelling Mask is a DIY 15 minute, miracle mask containing stabilised oxygen to brighten, moisturise, energise and clarify the complexion. Recommended for acne prone skins. 

Ross Perry, Medical Director

Dr Ross Perry is a leading aesthetic and dermatology doctor who specialises in botulinum toxins (Botox), fillers and...

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