Glycation: The Leading Cause of Skin Ageing

Scientific research shows that glycation is one of the main causes of skin ageing. Glycation is a chemical reaction mainly caused by the excess sugar we ingest but also oxidative stress and UV radiation.

 How does Glycation occur?

Glycation occurs when an excess of glucose is combined with the collagen and elastin fibres. This sets off a chemical reaction that forms destructive molecules called Advanced Glycation End Products (AGEs). Glucose overlaps around the collagen and elastin fibres and with time they become rigid and can even break and lose their activity. With age, the AGE molecules accumulate in the dermis and end up destroying the support cushion of the skin formed by elastin and collagen.


How does Glycation affect the appearance of the skin

As the AGE molecules damage collagen and elastin the following effects occur:

  • Reduces suppleness of the skin
  • Tissues sag to form flaccid skin
  • Wrinkles are formed and become more pronounced
  • The skin also loses radiance with a dull and tired appearance.

How to prevent glycation?

Glycation can’t be completely stopped however it can be slowed through positive dietary choices and good skincare products.


  • Avoid white sugar and High-fructose corn syrup
  • Instead of white bread and white rice, choose carbs such as wholegrain bread and brown rice (these produce less glucose and release it more slowly.)
  • Take carnosine supplements – an amino acid that has been shown to protect against AGE buildup.
  • Green tea stimulates collagen synthesis and has been proven to interfere with the glycation process.
  • White mulberries and their leaves are known to help to slow down the breakdown of sugars, allowing for a lower absorption into the blood.

White Bread


Choose a quality anti-ageing cream that contains AGE fighters. Look out for these two powerful ingredients key to the fight against glycation:

Ume Extract: Ume is a type of Japanese plum that has been used as food and medicine in China, Korea and Japan. It contains twice as many proteins, minerals and fats as other fruits. With powerful anti-glycation effects, it inhibits the formation of new AGEs whilst accelerating the decomposition of existing ones.


Vitamin C or Vitamin C Derivative (VC-IP): widely known for the following benefits on the skin:

  • Firms the skin by increasing collagen synthesis
  • Provides radiance and vitality
  • Powerful Anti-oxidising properties
  • Provides DNA protection

View Germaine de Capuccini’s recommended anti-glycation products.