The Science Behind Safflower Seed Oil & Collagen Production

It also contains a very special active compound called acacetin, a flavonoid. A 2020 study found that safflower seed oil and this compound can reduce damage caused by UVB exposure, specifically blocking damage to collagen. 

The research found that acacetin was able to inhibit an enzyme in the skin that’s responsible for the “collapse [of] connective proteins such as collagen and elastin, leading to wrinkles.” The specific pathway is MMP1, or collagenase-1, which degrades collagen types 1 and 3.

Collagen types 1 and 3 are the most abundant in the skin and the most critical for skin health. Essentially UVB rays stimulate an enzyme in the skin epidermal and dermal layers that then breaks down our structural proteins. Read: collagen loss. 

However, the acacetin in safflower seed oil was able to block this process. As the study notes, “SSO and its active compound acacetin can regulate MMP-1 expression.” In regulating this enzyme, the flavonoid is able to reduce the changes in collagen type 1 and type 3 breakdown. 

This research is impressive, to say the least, and makes a strong case for looking for safflower seed oil in your products. mindbodygreen’s dry body oil uses an organic safflower seed oil, alongside sunflower seed oil, squalane, vitamin E, and prickly pear seed oil for a robust, antioxidant-rich body oil that supports your skin barrier. 

However, I’d be remiss not to share this warning: The most important thing you can do for your skin and your collagen layer is to wear sunscreen daily and be smart about your choices when outside (wear protective accessories like hats and don’t sunbathe for sport). UV-induced sun damage is the No. 1 cause of collagen decline. No matter what you do elsewhere in your routine, it won’t matter if you’re not protecting your skin from UV rays. 

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