Updated: Mar 14, 2019
CoQ10 is short for “coenzyme Q10,” which is a substance similar to a vitamin found in every cell of the body. Also called “ubiquinone,” this nutrient is absolutely essential for the basic functioning of the human cell, participating in the generation of energy as well as in protecting the body from damaging free radicals.
Organs such as the heart, liver, and kidneys, because they have the highest energy requirements, also have the highest CoQ10 concentrations. The skin, as well, requires the nutrient for daily repair and protection against aging.
Aging of the Skin
One of the first places we notice the signs of aging is on the skin. Every time the skin is exposed to the sun and the elements, it loses a little more of its vitality. These elements, such as the sun, chemicals and pollution, can create free radicals in the skin's cells. A free radical is an atom with an unpaired electron, and according to Colorado State University, it is very reactive, meaning that when it runs into a healthy cell, it can cause damage. When cells are hit by free radicals and damaged repeatedly, they begin to die, and the aging process begins. Most free radicals stem from oxygen, and to fight these free radicals you need what is called an antioxidant. This is where CoQ10 steps in and benefits the skin.
CoQ10 Skin Benefits
As we age, the body starts producing less CoQ10 and we can notice the effects of this on our skin, in the form of sagging and the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Here are some of the benefits CoQ10 provides for the skin:
CoQ10 is a powerful antioxidant, protecting skin from environmental stressors and giving your skin a tighter, firmer look.
CoQ10 stimulates giving you younger-looking skin.
CoQ10 helps plump the appearance of your skin, reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
More good news—whereas some nutrients are too big to penetrate the skin, CoQ10 is not.
CoQ10 is a very powerful antioxidant, which means it can stop the damage that free radicals cause to the skin and its tissues. Research has proven that CoQ10 is not only beneficial when taken internally, as explained by the UMMC, but it is also beneficial when applied topically. The sun is the primary "ager" of the skin, and a study published in the 2008 issue of "Biofactors" shows that topical application of CoQ10 reduces, and even reverses, damage caused to the skin by the sun. Using a 1 percent CoQ10 cream for five months, researchers found that wrinkles subsided and improved in appearance, and skin cells and fibers were protected from further damage. Not only does it renew the skin and protect it from aging, CoQ10 can assist in the healing of wounds on the skin, as reported in the June 2009 issue of "Archives of Pharmacal Research."