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The Importance of Ceramides in Healthy Skin

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Ceramides are essential for healthy skin, but the real solution to restoring barrier function lies in the right combination of essential lipids.

Is your child troubled by itchy or irritated skin that flares up with little warning? A weakened skin barrier may be to blame.

The skin is our largest organ and the skin barrier bears the heavy responsibility of being the first line of defence against moisture loss, irritants and bacteria. When examined closely, it’s a marvel of construction with multiple layers creating a complex matrix.

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Out of the three essential lipids in the skin barrier, ceramides are the dominant lipid, together with cholesterol and free fatty acids in a ratio of 50%, 25% and 15% respectively.R1

Eczema-prone skin contains reduced levels of this essential component, by as much as 30-50% compared to normal skin, leading to impaired barrier function.R2 As a result, a vicious cycle ensues:

  • The skin loses moisture more easily in a process known as transepidermal water loss (TEWL)
  • Skin becomes unable to repel irritants and is easily aggravated; this is a common feature in skin conditions like eczema.
  • Skin becomes dry, uncomfortable and itchy
  • Scratching leads to further damage of the skin barrier.R3

The solution to breaking this cycle lies in maintaining the right balance of ceramides. In the case of eczema-prone skin, it becomes necessary to correct the balance of lipids topically.R4

There are nine types or subclasses of ceramides in the topmost level of the skin, known as the stratum corneum.R4 Any or all of these may be found in topical applications, with ceramides 1, 3, and 6-II commonly used to help dry, irritated skin conditions.R5 They are further distinguished as free human skin ceramides or protein bound ceramides based on their chemical structure, of which there are 18 types such as ceramide NS, ceramide AdS, ceramide EOH and so forth.R6

With such a wide variety and many options on pharmacy shelves, it’s hard to know what works. Furthermore, it’s tempting to think that more is better – after all, the goal is to replenish low ceramide levels.

However, research shows that, firstly, ceramides are specialists hence all ceramides are not considered equal when it comes to restoring barrier function. Secondly, in addition to using the right type of ceramide, it’s also important to use it in the right balance.

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The Optimal Ratio of Essential Lipids

Ceramide PC-104, also known as Hydroxylpropyl Bispalmitamide MEA,R7 when used in ceramide-dominant formulations in a 3:1:1 ratio of ceramide:cholesterol:free fatty acids, is clinically proven to repair the skin’s protective barrier.R8

Significantly, repeated research has shown that application of only one or two out of these three lipids, or a combination of all three that does not comply with this ratio, does not produce the same barrier-strengthening results; this further reinforces the importance of using the right balance of essential lipids.R9

This balance lies at the core of Ceradan®, a specialised range of ceramide-dominant skincare employing the optimal 3:1:1 ratio of essential lipids to repair the skin barrier and restore its natural function in order to provide relief to those who suffer eczema-prone skin.

In a study involving 58 children with mild-to-moderate eczema:

  • The use of Ceradan® Moisturising Wash and Ceradan® Skin Barrier Repair Cream applied twice daily for 12 weeks prevented recurrence or dry, irritated skin in 45.5% of the children.
  • This improvement was supported in both patient-centric reporting known as PEST (Patient eczema severity time) as well as through clinical observation using the widely-used SCORAD (SCORing of Atopic Dermatitis) method.
  • With ongoing use, the children’s skin barrier function continued to improve
  • Almost 90% of the participants stated that they would like to continue with the regimenR10

These results, indicating clear and measurable improvements in skin barrier function, further support the existing body of research that a ceramide-dominant formulation with the correct balance of essential lipids, together with the use of topical anti-inflammatory or steroid creams where necessary, are an effective strategy for long-term management of eczema-prone skin. As eczema is common among young children, this regimen may also help with reducing dependence on steroid-based treatments.

For more information about managing eczema and solutions for strengthening the skin barrier, speak to your doctor for advice.

References:

  1. Vávrová K., Kováčik A., Opálka L. Ceramides in the Skin Barrier, Eur. Pharm. J. 2017, 64 (2): 28-35.
  2. Data on file
  3. Jonathan I. Silverberg, Diane B. Nelson & Gil Yosipovitch (2016) Addressing treatment challenges in atopic dermatitis with novel topical therapies, Journal of Dermatological Treatment, 27:6, 568-576, DOI: 10.1080/09546634.2016.1174765
  4. Myeong Jun Choi and Howard I. Maibach, Role of Ceramides in Barrier Function of Healthy and Diseased Skin, Am J Clin Dermatol 2005; 6 (4): 215-223
  5. Everything You Should Know About Using Ceramides, Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/beauty-skin-care/ceramide
  6. Vávrová K., Kováčik A., Opálka L. Ceramides in the Skin Barrier, Eur. Pharm. J. 2017, 64 (2): 28-35.
  7. Hydroxypropyl bispalmitamide monoethanolamide, https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/Hydroxypropyl-bispalmitamide-monoethanolamide
  8. Mao-Qiang et al (1993a). Optimization of Physiological Lipid Mixtures for Barrier Repair. The Society for Investigative Dermatology, Inc. Vol. 106, No. 5 May 1996
  9. Myeong Jun Choi and Howard I. Maibach, Role of Ceramides in Barrier Function of Healthy and Diseased Skin, Am J Clin Dermatol 2005; 6 (4): 215-223
  10. Koh MJ et al. Comparison of the Simple Patient-Centric Atopic Dermatitis Scoring System PEST with SCORAD in Young Children Using a Ceramide Dominant Therapeutic Moisturizer. Dermatol Ther (Heidelb) (2017) 7:383–393, DOI 10.1007/s13555-017-0186-1

Testimonials

Soothing gel can help calm the skin.

Lennix is super sensitive to mosquito bites not only does it swells up to the size of golf balls but when he scratches it ….
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Joanne

Singapore

Ceradan Hydra moisturiser is able to maintain the hydrated.

Having eczema since I was 2 weeks old at birth, I’ve been on the search for products to keep the eczema under control ….
Read More

Cheryl

Singapore

It’s soap free and safe for all skin types

Honestly though, this 3 are my most used products from @ceradan311sg ? I love using the wash on Shayera & Zayne as ….
Read More

Jane

Singapore

It’s a very gentle and baby-safe product.

We were introduced to Ceradan Skin Barrier Repair Cream by Marc’s paediatric when he started to develop a neck rash from all the sweating, milk and drool ….
Read More

Cheryl

Singapore

It is hypoallergenic and 100% safe for newborn.

My baby is almost 2 months old, for the past weeks, I’ve been overwhelmed by frequent diaper changing and feeding my baby day and night ….
Read More

Adeline

Singapore

Ceramoz will make your life better!

Recommended by a pediatric dermatologist, my 4 YO girl has been using the Ceramoz for more than 2 years now. It is truly the best of both worlds ….
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Alfred

Singapore
  • Lennix is super sensitive to mosquito bites not only does it swells up to the size of golf balls but when he scratches it he gets a bacterial skin infection which either lands him in hospital for IV antibiotics or heavy doses of oral antibiotics.

    So now whenever he gets bitten we immediately apply antiseptic solution and then put a bandaid on it so he wouldn’t be able to scratch.

    However the area around the bite becomes very dry and scabby possibly due to lack of air because we leave the bandaid on until the bite heals? We have been using @ceradan311sg soothing gel to help calm the skin so scratching is minimised to prevent further damage and it’s been working great! We ❤️ it!

  • Having eczema since I was 2 weeks old at birth, I’ve been on the search for products to keep the eczema under control. One thing I found useful before attending this session is that I “drink” moisturisers by the bottle and only came to know Ceradan since Marc was born. What I didn’t know was Ceradan is great for all ages, all skin types, especially dry, sensitive and eczema ones.

    The texture of the Ceradan Hydra moisturiser is very light yet is able to maintain the hydrated feeling for quite a while. And understanding from Dr Lynn that the key issue with eczema skin is to build up the skin’s barrier to minimise inflammation and infection, using a moisturiser with 3:1:1 ceramide dominant ratio is essential.

  • Honestly though, this 3 are my most used products from @ceradan311sg ? I love using the wash on Shayera & Zayne as it puts my mind at ease knowing that it’s soap free and safe for all skin types. As for the diaper cream, I use it on the kids even when there’s no rash to ensure that they’re protected. I used it on myself the other day when I had a minor rash on my hand and it helped! As for Ceramoz, it’s part mosquito repellent and part moisturiser! It’s the kiddos must have when they go over to my in-laws place which is a landed space, so you know how mosquitos love to party inside.?

  • We were introduced to Ceradan Skin Barrier Repair Cream by Marc’s paediatric when he started to develop a neck rash from all the sweating, milk and drool in between his neck folds. And later, when Marc started on his helmet therapy, the orthopaedic suggested using Ceradan Body Wash to help minimise any possibility of heat rashes and keep his skin moisturised.

    Having used Ceradan products on Marc for quite a while now, we do find that it’s a very gentle and baby-safe product. Upon using the Ceradan Skin Barrier Repair Cream, his neck rash was under control very quickly and it’s been very effective even for myself when I have eczema flare ups. Ceradan Regimen, which consists of Ceradan Skin Barrier Repair Cream and Ceradan Body Wash, is suitable for children as young as newborns and it has demonstrated clinically-proven efficacy in a study conducted by KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital and National Skin Centre in Singapore to prevent 1 in 2 eczema flares in Singapore children.

    Since Marc loves swimming, and the chlorine in the water is very drying for the skin, I highly recommend Ceradan Body Wash to cleanse and maintain his gentle baby skin as hydrated as possible.

  • My baby is almost 2 months old, for the past weeks, I’ve been overwhelmed by frequent diaper changing and feeding my baby day and night. ?‍♀️?? Diaper rash is also every mum’s nightmare so choosing the right diaper cream is so important. Ceradan’s diaper cream is clinically proven and also recommended by KK Children & Women’s Hospital.

    It is hypoallergenic and 100% safe for newborn.

    I’m thankful to be able to try out this diaper cream for my baby with its unique triple protective actions◾Zinc oxide to seal out wetness ◾Octenidine to control yeast overgrowth ◾Contains 3:1:1 ratio of ceramic, cholesterol and free fatty acids to repair skin barrier.

    Thanks for keeping my baby’s skin rash-free!

    Ceradan is available at Watsons, Guardian and Unity stores.

  • Recommended by a pediatric dermatologist, my 4 YO girl has been using the Ceramoz for more than 2 years now. It is truly the best of both worlds, being able to moisturise and protect against mosquito bites at the same time!

    One big problem we had to deal with when my girl started childcare was mosquitoes ?. Doesn’t help when she had eczema and very sensitive skin. One bite on her and the bitten site would swell and become inflamed. Mosquito patches don’t work at all, and kid-friendly insect repellents either don’t work so well, or are too “spicy” – imagine the whines when she accidentally rubs her eyes after applying the repellent. When we were initially introduced to Ceramoz, we were a bit doubtful but later glad to learn that my girl don’t get bitten by mosquitoes that often anymore! (Truth he told, she only gets bitten when she forgets to apply it after her shower in childcare). It has proved its use so much that I use it now even during her non school days, 2+ years and counting!

    If you have a school-going child with eczema conditions, delicate skin, or is simply a mosquito magnet, Ceramoz will make your life better!