Apples, Augustus, and Antioxidants (Mature Audiences Only)

I am Augustus Gloop when the holidays come around which is why I’m always in charge of making the pies.  My go to fave is deep dish apple.  This requires a shit ton large quantity of sliced apples.  Because I know I’ll be slicing them forever, I always remember to have a bottle of lemon juice to periodically coat those bad boys before tossing them in the bowl to keep them from turning to mushy brown lumps.  Sick.     

This magical kitchen hack is widely known as a tried and true solution.  You might wonder how this in any way relevant to Sue Lane Beauty or the skincare world.  Well, here it is: antioxidants.

What really is happening at a cellular level when your apple turns to shit?

One of the enzymes found in the flesh of fruit (and your birthday suit) is called Polyphenol Oxidase (PPO).  They encourage the phenols in the cells to hook up with oxygen and they’ll keep doing it as long as there are phenols and oxygen to go around.  This party fires off a ridiculous series of chemical reactions producing melanin molecules.   In short:   Cell wall destruction = oxidation = melanin production = brown apple.  

 When we cut into the flesh of the fruit, we’re cutting into/breaking open the cell walls, exposing the phenol molecules and PPO enzymes to Oxygen.  Cue oxidation.   This is where the lemons come into play—Citric acid/vitamin C.  It stops the enzymatic process that leads to the oxidation.   The apple remains crisp, juicy and unchanged in color and the integrity of the cells remain. 

A similar reaction takes place in our skin when we’re exposed to damaging elements (pollution, UVA/UVB rays that produce free radicals).   These whores molecules contain oxygen and are highly unstable and aggressive.  They oxidize by attaching themselves to any molecule they can while stealing electrons.  This causes cumulative damage because they continue to replicate with each oxidation reaction.  The damage can take the form of inflammation, disease, wrinkling and sagging of the skin, capillary damage/redness, DNA damage which can cause cancer, AND  hyper pigmentation/discoloration from overproduction of melanin.   Before you go squirting lemon juice in your face, you should know there are other options.

Vitamin C is one of the most recognized antioxidant/brighteners and is usually found in serums and moisturizers/lotions.  Others include Green Tea, Bearberry, and Licorice Root.  These beauties not only protect us from free-radicals, but they continue to improve the damage that's been done by strengthening the cells and inhibiting the continued over-production of melanin. They lighten and brighten.    

So yeah, antioxidants are not horse shit part of a passing fad.  They are ESSENTIAL to combat pre-mature, biochemical aging and disease.  I’m not saying your face is equivalent to a rotting apple (well, kind of),  it’s just slowly being compromised without proper protection (SPF) and treatment (antioxidants) and may very well resemble a mildly discolored piece of fruit sooner than you’d like.   So jump on the bandwagon and grab yourself some powerhouse products and stop the damage in its brown, dumb tracks.  

I would dive deeper into the different forms of vitamin C and how they behave but that’s a story for another night.   Stay tuned for the next eye opener, be the crisp apple, and for fuck’s sake, have some pie.    We are all Augustus. 

Happy Holidays,



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