If Your Skin Is Lacking Bounce, You May Need More Of This Nutrient
Bouncy, supple skin truly starts from within: You can load on hydrating topical after topical, but if you haven’t addressed your internal moisture levels, you likely won't achieve the most plush, juicy skin texture. In addition to reaching your personal water quota, derms suggest looking at your diet: If your skin is underperforming in terms of bounce, it may be due to a very common nutrient gap.
Which nutrient, you ask? We're referring to omega-3 fatty acids. (If your brain jumps to salmon, yes, you're on the right track.) Here, we discuss how omega-3s affect your skin and how to make sure you're getting enough in your day-to-day—even if you're not a frequent fish eater.
The connection between omega-3s and skin.
The link between omega-3s and skin health is well documented. In fact, experts routinely recommend increasing fatty-acid intake to help improve and protect the skin.* Board-certified dermatologist Whitney Bowe, M.D., even considers salmon her desert-island food pick, as the bounty of omega-3s "keep the skin supple and hydrated."* You also have natural lipids (like ceramides) and fatty acids on the surface of your skin, which help seal in moisture and keep environmental aggressors out. As board-certified dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, M.D., once told mbg: "Natural fats maintain the integrity of the outer skin layer," and when you have a healthy lipid layer, your skin appears supple and dewy.*
Plenty of research backs up the omega-3 and skin connection, too. One comprehensive review of 38 studies found that omega-3 supplements help balance the skin's inflammatory response1.* The researchers consider omega-3 supplements especially useful for skin health, given their "high safety profile, low cost, and ease of supplementation."* (Safety, accessibility, and ease are all things you want in a stellar beauty supplement, no?) Another study2 found that participants who combined omega-3 supplements with topicals had improved overall skin health and appearance compared to those who only used topicals.*
How to get enough omega-3 fatty acids.
So we know that omega-3 fatty acid intake can help improve and protect the skin, but how do we make sure we have enough?* You see, Americans aren't eating nearly enough fish—we're talking an average intake of only 4 ounces3 per week, when research suggests American adults should log 7 to 8 ounces at a minimum. That's your starting point. However, that doesn't mean you have to eat salmon every night of the week (which can get pretty expensive; high-quality fish isn't cheap!). To get your fill of those skin-healthy fats, that's where supplementation comes into play, like mindbodygreen's omega-3 potency+.*
One serving of our high-quality formula is the healthy omega-3 fat equivalent of a whole serving of oily fish.† Specifically, it uses cold-water, sustainably sourced pure anchovy oil from wild-caught fish in the South Pacific. Then a state-of-the-art facility in Chile uses 100% solar energy to extract the oil in its purest and most bioavailable triglyceride form, then it heads straight to the U.S. (i.e., minimizing its carbon footprint) to be encapsulated in our tilapia softgel. And the best part? There's no fishy aftertaste—just a fresh experience with the organic lemon and rosemary additions.
Not to mention, the research we discussed above focused on omega-3 supplements and found some pretty impressive results. So if you're craving that elusive "bounce" in your skin, it may be worth looking into omega-3 fatty acid supplements.* And for what it's worth, the benefits go far beyond beauty: Some other benefits of omega-3s include keeping up cardiovascular well-being, improving brain function4, mood balance5, and so much more.* If you want to learn more about omega-3 benefits and functions, check out our breakdown here.
Although topicals are important for healthy skin, they don't necessarily do it all. It's important to take care of your skin from the inside out, especially if you're looking to attain bouncy, hydrated skin. If you aren't consuming enough fish (and most of us aren't), you may be missing out on those essential omega-3 fatty acids that contribute to overall healthy skin.* And even if you do eat fish semi-regularly, you may want an additional, targeted, and guaranteed source of EPA and DHA since you know how important they are. That's where supplements can really make a difference—just be sure to look for a formula with high potency and sustainably sourced ingredients.
Hannah Frye is the Assistant Beauty Editor at mindbodygreen. She has a B.S. in journalism and a minor in women’s, gender, and queer studies from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Hannah has written across lifestyle sections including health, wellness, sustainability, personal development, and more. She previously interned for Almost 30, a top-rated health and wellness podcast. In her current role, Hannah reports on the latest beauty trends, holistic skincare approaches, must-have makeup products, and inclusivity in the beauty industry. She currently lives in New York City.