Forever young; researchers develop a skin that restores youthful elasticity

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Scientists have developed a new wearable polymer material that can restore the skin to its youthfully elasticity according to a reports published on the Journal Nature Materials.

The silicone based film developed by scientists at US firm Olivo Labsand MIT calling it the ‘second skin’ is elastic, invisible, durable, moisturizing and provides a breathable barrier layer that can be the answer to certain skin diseases or skin problems due to environmental  factors or age such as wrinkles, eye bags, eczema, psoriasis among other conditions.

The ‘second skin’ can be altered according to how it will be used, by making it more or less permeable such as using a less permeable skin to hold medication or a more permeable one for the under eye bags.

We tell people to pat their skin with a damp washcloth and put on a heavy moisturizer, but that only lasts a short time,” Dr. Barbara A. Gilchrest, a dermatology professor who is part of the research team. “They end up with greasy goo all over the sheets, and they wake up in the middle of the night, terribly uncomfortable. We need something that was easier to use and didn’t make a mess and stays. Which is what this stuff does.”

During the tests the ‘second skin’ reshaped eye bags and smoothed out wrinkles while boosting moisture to prevent lines forming in the first place.

“It’s an invisible layer that can provide a barrier, provide cosmetic improvement, and potentially deliver a drug locally to the area that’s being treated,” said Dr Daniel Anderson, an associate professor in MIT’s Department of Chemical Engineering.

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