Growth Factors Drive Personalized Skin Care

Genes determine how you look and age but the environment can speed it up or slow it down
Genes determine how you look and age but the environment can speed it up or slow it down

Customized skin care is based on two factors­: your DNA and your environment. Genes may determine how you look and age but the environment you live in can speed it up or slow it down.  

Decoding the Skin

Epigenetics is the area of science that looks at how and why our DNA is expressed in a certain way and helps us understand how our environment interacts with our genetic material. Because both impact the health of our skin, using the science of epigenetics can significantly improve our ability to customize our skin care choices.  

For example, many women experience significant hormonal changes each month (i.e., hormone cycles are an example of epigenetic processes). These hormonal changes also impact the skin (e.g. dry skin), which means it’s important to change your routine during these periods so that your skin can better adapt. 

Because genetics plays a significant role in the health of our skin as well, understanding one’s genetic background is key to successful skin management. Much of this genetic information can be obtained from knowing our ethnic background, which can provide a broad understanding of some of the skin care products that will work best.

The Power of the Individual

However, each individual is highly unique; even among siblings that have similar genetic material, one can find variances that impact the skin in different ways. That is the case for Neal Kitchen, Ph.D an epigenetics expert and COO of HydroPeptide, a professional skin care company specializing in epigenetics and peptides. Kitchen has an identical twin brother who is three inches shorter than him, showing that environmental factors start in the womb, signaling genes to express themselves differently.  

The Role of the Environment

The accessibility to our DNA sequence has significantly increased what we can learn about our genes and how they might express themselves. Many companies are now providing analyses of one’s DNA sequence that can be used to know what skin concerns are at the highest risk, which can help us develop preventive skin care regimens.

“While this genetic knowledge is aiding us in customizing skin care regimens, the environment plays a pivotal role in how we select which skin products to use on a daily basis,” explains Kitchen.  

For example, where we live can significantly change what our skin needs to stay healthy. Similarly, our lifestyle and culture can greatly impact our skin’s needs. While environmental impacts like sun damage and smoking are easy to identify, there are other environmental factors that should influence our skin care choices.

One’s sleep cycle (or lack thereof) can significantly alter the expression patterns of your DNA and influence the health of your skin. Scenarios in our lives such as travel or a stressful deadline at work can alter the epigenetic patterns in our skin. Consequently, daily changes to our skin care choices are also important.

Peptides & Personalization

HydroPeptide recommends using products designed via epigenetic research to have a greater impact in maintaining healthy skin.  

Peptides are an invaluable ingredient in skin care because each peptide can help generate a positive response within the skin’s expression pattern, regardless of one’s genetic background. Because each peptide is unique, a variety of peptides can maximize the response for each person For instance, peptides can be used to address location, culture, race, gender, and environmental factors to truly personalize and diversify skin care.

By incorporating peptides into all of its products, HydroPeptide is able to customize skin care based on primary and secondary concerns, such as hydration needs.  

The depth of these formulas allows individuals to build a foundation of products for a standard skin care regimen, while also layering in other products based on conditional needs.  

Nancy Trent ( is a writer and speaker, a lifelong wellness activist, a globe-trotting trend watcher, and the founder and president of Trent & Company, the leading wellness PR firm. Trent & Company, which launched many health and beauty brands, grew out of Nancy’s personal and passionate commitment to helping people live longer and healthier lives. A former journalist for New York magazine, Nancy has written seven books on healthy lifestyles, serves on the editorial boards of several magazines and travels around the world speaking at conferences and trade shows on trends in the marketplace. She is a recognized expert in PR with more than 30 years of experience creating and managing highly successful campaigns.


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