Growth Factors: What are They and Why Do We Need Them?

If you’re concerned about reversing the signs of aging in your skin, rejuvenation can be found in the innovative science of skin care containing growth factors. Growth factors are an important part of maintaining firmness and elasticity in your skin. Growth factors are made by skin cells to help your body maintain healthy skin. They work by repairing damaged skin, making the components that provide firmness and elasticity and helping to maintain your skin’s natural protective functions. They are NOT growth hormones! Aging, sun-damaged skin requires growth factors to maintain itself. However, cells in aging skin make less growth factors than cells in youthful skin. Using skin care products containing a high concentration of stable growth factors every day is proven to help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and improve skin tone and texture.

Where do Growth Factors in skin care products come from?

Growth factors are made from multiple sources: human cells grown in a laboratory (skin cells, bone marrow stem cells, fat stem cells), taken from your blood (PRP – Platelet Rich Plasma) or sources such as snails and plants. While all cells can produce growth factors, the best results occur when growth factors come from the same type of cells they will be helping. For example, fat stem cells create growth factors that help fat cells and bone marrow stem cells produce growth factors that help bone marrow. For best results, growth factors for skin care should be produced by skin cells called fibroblasts, whose main function is to make the components that support your skin.

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Do Growth Factors really work?

Growth factors have been shown in multiple studies to improve the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, texture, and discoloration. Good results can take 6-12 weeks, depending on the quality of your skin before use and consistent use twice per day can create dramatic results. Most studies show visible reduction in crow’s feet, improvement of under eye skin texture, and an increase in overall radiance. But, not all products containing growth factors are created equal and some offer more benefits than others. For example, using growth factors with strong antioxidants, such as TNS Essential Serum®, tends to show results even sooner, typically within 4-8 weeks!

How does TNS Essential Serum® stand out from other Growth Factor products on the market?

TNS Essential Serum® provides a combination of stable growth factors (TNS Recovery Complex®) with strong antioxidants (APS Corrective ComplexTM) designed to provide faster results. TNS Recovery Complex® is the first skin care made almost entirely of stabilized human growth factor (93.6%). The growth factors are harvested using a patented process that ensures their stability and activity. The TNS Recovery Complex® formulation and manufacturing process maintains the stability of active growth factors, while carefully selected antioxidants and peptides present in TNS Essential Serum® boost the benefits of growth factors.

What other skin care should I use with Growth Factors?

A good skin care routine should include regular use of SPF 30 (or higher) broad-spectrum sunscreen. It is very important that you protect your newly rejuvenated skin if you want to maintain the results. Avoid sun exposure, smoking, and pollution which can damage skin rapidly, reversing the results of growth factors. Antioxidants, such as Vitamin C, neutralize free radicals and provide an extra layer of protection beyond sunscreen alone. Total Defense + Repair provides protection from sun exposure and free radicals. For more serious skin concerns, Vitamin A (retinol) may be added to your routine with growth factor products. Retinol works slightly differently than growth factors and the combination can provide better results than either one alone. Talk to your skin care provider about a routine that is right for you.

Who should use Growth Factor products?

Growth factor skin care benefits anyone with visible signs of facial aging. While women with early signs of aging may benefit by using growth factors, the greatest visible improvements are seen in women with greater damage and mature skin. Dedicated, twice-a-day use is the key to maximizing the benefits from growth factors products. Your skin care professional can help you learn whether or not products containing growth factors are right for you.


The content for this blog was provided by Rahul C. Mehta, PhD VP Research & Development, SkinMedica®, An Allergan Company

Rahul C. Mehta, PhD is Vice President of Research & Development for SkinMedica®. He is a pharmacist by training with over 30 years of experience in pharmaceutical research and development. He has authored or co-authored over 50 research publications and book chapters, over 150 poster presentations and multiple patents in pharmaceutical sciences. Dr. Mehta is strongly committed to bringing pharmaceutical level evidence-based skin care with strong biology and clinical science for creation of multi-modality holistic skin care products.

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