Chris Kyrou is the Vice President of Research & Development at Shaklee Corporation and currently heads up the development of all Shaklee beauty care products, including the YOUTH® Skin Care line. Previously, Chris led the skincare development program in Research & Development for a major Fortune 500 company, and he has over 20 years of beauty industry experience formulating and leading development of skincare products and color cosmetics. Over the last two years Chris has led Research & Development in the development of YOUTH Skin Care.
With 8 patents and patents-pending, YOUTH Skin Care represents a breakthrough in skin care science. Our promise is you will not only dramatically improve the health of your skin with YOUTH, but it’s 100% guaranteed to shift your skin to a younger age.
We were able to talk to Chris about the new YOUTH product line and the science behind it:
Q: At the 2017 Global Conference Shaklee launched YOUTH Skin Care. How is this skin care line different from others in the market?
When you look at consumers today, there is clearly a growing trend where women and men are seeking more natural beauty products. The challenge to meeting that consumer need is while there are many brands in the market that claim to be all natural, they typically deliver on that promise, but they don’t really deliver products that truly work and that consumers are satisfied with. The flip side of that is there’s many companies who deliver very good efficacy, but they are nowhere near natural; they rely on many questionable chemicals to deliver on that efficacy. So you have this mutually exclusive space in the market today where you’re either free of potentially harmful chemicals or you deliver high performance.
This is what YOUTH really answers for these consumers. We’ve found that sweet spot where we’ve bridged the gap. With YOUTH, we have products that we’ve clinically demonstrated deliver amazing efficacy. When you look at our claims versus other companies’ out there today, they truly deliver benefits above and beyond what the competitors are even claiming. But we didn’t have to rely on potentially harmful chemicals to deliver on that efficacy.
Q: What are some key highlights that you can tell us about YOUTH Skin Care?
What comes to mind is the science behind YOUTH; one of the key aspects is that it’s formulated to address the key causes of aging. Our skin is constantly under assault from the environment, and free radical damage accelerates aging of our skin. So to be effective you have to have a technology that protects the skin against those assaults. But in addition, a lot of the latest anti-aging science revolves around the skin’s regenerative processes. When you look deeper, our skin produces collagen and elastin; these are proteins in the skin that keep our skin supple, keep it firm, and prevent wrinkles from forming. But after the age of 20 our skin produces less collagen and elastin every year, and over the course of a lifetime that has a dramatic impact on our skin. Up to 80 percent of the thickness of our skin is lost as we age. So if there is a way to intervene in that loss as we age, we have a really effective scientific approach—and we did just that.
A first-to-market aspect of our YOUTH science is that it targets the key youth proteins in the skin, only recently discovered in the world of anti-aging research, that help signal cells to keep producing more collagen and elastin. The Lotus Japonicus extract, a key botanical ingredient in our Youth Complex, is a first-to-market technology from the standpoint that it targets those key proteins. That helps signal the cells to keep producing more collagen and elastin, and that’s a key first with our science.
Another breakthrough aspect of YOUTH is on the protection side. People who are familiar with Vivix® know that one of the key ingredients is the muscadine grape, which works at the cellular level in our body to help prevent cellular aging. So we adapted the muscadine grape extract for its use in skin care applications. What our testing showed was that it also works in our skin cells to protect cells at the DNA level which is so critical because the DNA is like the control center of the cell. If your DNA is damaged it doesn’t function properly, and you start to see signs of aging. If you can protect that DNA from damage from the environment, that’s the best protection you can give your skin, and our muscadine grape polyphenol blend helps do just that in skin cells.
Q: YOUTH is formulated in accordance with the “Free of” list. What is the “Free of” list and why is it a big deal?
Our current “Free of” list for YOUTH is an excess of 2,500 chemicals that we do not put in YOUTH. The fact that we’ve been able to deliver true benefits and true efficacy without relying on all these questionable chemicals is really a breakthrough. If there’s any ingredient that has any question about its potential safety on skin, we put it on our “Free of” list. If we can find a safe alternative to any questionable chemical and preferably sourced from nature, we do that. For example, there are a number of preservatives that have questionable safety profiles, so there are a number of preservatives that are on our “Free of” list that we did not use in YOUTH for this reason.
Another good example of the use of our “Free of” list is the sun protection of our Age Defense Mineral Moisturizer SPF 30. The reality is sun protection is the best thing you can do for your skin from an anti-aging and health perspective. That said, there are many sun filters that are approved by FDA, but there’s also a lot of data questioning the safety of those sunscreen filters. So we were able to look to nature and develop our mineral SPF moisturizer with zinc oxide. Zinc oxide is chemical free, it’s naturally derived, it’s based on the mineral zinc, and it’s one of the most effective sunscreens approved by the FDA.
Q: Can you tell us about the Skin Age Index and why it was important for the development of YOUTH?
The Skin Age Index was clinically developed by skin experts in the field to calculate the age of your skin. The way it does that is it looks at objective clinical data of your skin and it’s able to predict what your skin age is. The way they developed this system is they studied skin of women across a broad range of ages, they took many skin measurements from those women, they analyzed thousands of data points from those women, and they correlated all of that data to what most makes us look older as our skin ages. And based on all of that scientific research they were able to come up with the Skin Age Index, which is able to essentially look at your skin, correlate all of that objective data from your skin, and give you an age of your skin.
It was interesting to us for two reasons: Firstly, it was a breakthrough in scientific proof on how you objectively measure the age of skin. And, secondly, it provided us a way to measure whether YOUTH could actually shift women’s skin back to a younger age. We had women come into our clinical study, and we had the Skin Age Index calculate their skin age at the beginning of the study before they started using our YOUTH products. And we then calculated their skin age index at the end of the study and that’s where with very objective data we were able to back the amazing claims that we’re making behind the YOUTH line.
Every single woman in the study showed a measurable improvement in their skin age. And with continued use we saw two thirds of those women actually shift their skin age into a younger decade.
Q: Why are you personally are excited about the launch of YOUTH Skin Care?
I think it’s an exciting new opportunity for Shaklee. It’s exciting that we’re entering the skin care market with a new product line again. True to who Shaklee is—science based, looking to nature, products that truly work—it’s exciting to be a part of a new skin care brand that’s really going to deliver on what Shaklee stands for.
Learn more about YOUTH Skin Care.