Ep 55 - Mother Molecules

What do glutathione, CBG, and carboxylic acids have in common? They are all mother molecules! As we celebrate Mother’s Day in May, it’s a good time to pay homage to mother molecules as well. Tune in to this episode as we explore what makes these molecules so maternally awesome!


About Ella Cressman:

Ella Cressman is a licensed esthetician, certified organic formulator, business owner, and absolute ingredient junkie! As an educator, she enjoys empowering other estheticians and industry professionals to understand skin care from an ingredient standpoint rather than a product-specific view.

She has spent many hours researching ingredients, understanding how and where they are sourced, as well as phytochemistry, histological access, and complementary compounds for intentional skin benefits. In addition to running a skin care practice, Cressman founded a comprehensive consulting group, the HHP Collective, and has consulted for several skin care lines, including several successful CBD brands.

Connect with Ella Cressman:

Website: www.ellacress.com

Website: www.hhpcollective.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/HHP-Collective-105204177682777/

Instagram: www.instagram.com/hhpcollective

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/ella-cressman-62aa46a


About our Sponsor: Antedotum

Antedotum founder Karina Perez Marconi was raised on the island of Puerto Rico (born to a Cuban dad and Puerto Rican mom), which meant consistent sun exposure from an early age—and cumulative sun damage for the Latina’s olive skin. For decades, Marconi was plagued by dark spots, which were compounded by lingering, postpartum melasma after the birth of her daughter, Havana. Working for many years in beauty at Chanel’s New York headquarters deepened Marconi’s understanding of premium skin care. But finding an antidote to her skin aliments remained elusive. When the family relocated to Aspen, Colorado, the unforgiving mountain climate of dry air, high altitude, wind, sun, and cold only intensified her skin conditions.  

Colorado is where Marconi took her curiosity of CBD and its purported curative abilities and started to sample an assortment of oils and balms. None of them smelled or looked great, but to her surprise, her skin started to transform. This unexpected discovery evolved into Antedotum.

Visit: antedotum.com

As seen on The Today Show: youtu.be/xNcCuQE1Qjc

IG: instagram.com/ANTEDOTUM

LinkedIn: linkedin.com/company/antedotum


About our Sponsor: Purafil

Purafil, established in 1969, is proud to protect people, processes, and environments worldwide. We manufacture revolutionary products that set the standards in our industry. Our focus is to create the world’s best air purification products to make your life and business better. We are dedicated to making the world safer, healthier, and more productive. 

Web: www.purafil.com  

Facebook: www.facebook.com/purafil.inc  

Instagram: www.instagram.com/purafil_inc  

YouTube: www.youtube.com/channel/UC9JUjV7fgdjr1GTf-3jbahQ  

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/purafil-inc./mycompany 

Email: Seth.wyatt@filtrationgroup.com  

Phone: 330-328-8431 


About our Sponsor: Sorella Apothecary

Sorella Apothecary is a professional skin care line that combines the best of modern-day science with natural, old world philosophies. The line is created for the esthetician by the esthetician. Botanically based, the results-driven product line is made for multiple skin types. Every ingredient is hand-picked with a less-is-more approach to deliver the best, most effective results. Sorella Apothecary believes in real results and achieving those results without compromising the skin’s integrity. Sorella translates to “sister” in Italian and the brand gets its name from its co-founders, Danielle and Emily, who are sisters by marriage.

Visit www.sorellaapothecary.com for more information and follow us on:






About Associated Skin Care Professionals (ASCP):

Associated Skin Care Professionals (ASCP) is the nation’s largest association for skin care professionals and your ONLY all-inclusive source for professional liability insurance, education, community, and career support. For estheticians at every stage of the journey, ASCP is your essential partner. Get in touch with us today if you have any questions or would like to join and become an ASCP member.

Connect with ASCP:

Website: www.ascpskincare.com

Email: getconnected@ascpskincare.com

Phone: 800-789-0411

Facebook: www.facebook.com/ASCPskincare

Instagram: www.instagram.com/ascpskincare

0:00:00.0 Speaker 1: Antedotum is a dermatologist and aesthetician-approved CBD skincare brand that is featured in some of the country's most prestigious day spas and integrated by aestheticians into their services, creating a must-have for their client's daily skin regimen. The company's proprietary formulas are 100% clean, plant-based, responsibly sourced in the USA, never animal tested and features its own potent 500 mg full-spectrum CBD complex. As the only CBD skincare brand with a medical advisory board comprised of dermatologist researchers, Antedotum is undertaking the groundbreaking efficacy of the Antedotum CBD complex as a skincare ingredient. Antedotum products are multifunctional and multi-correctional, made for all skin types and sensitive skin. Use them alone or combine them into your routine. 


0:00:48.3 S1: You've trained your staff, set up hand sanitising stations and provided surface wipes now it's time to complete your infection prevention protocol today by effectively cleaning the air and providing peace of mind to your clients. Purafil technology removes harmful airborne contaminants and odours from sensitive environments around the world. They are trusted to protect IVF clinics, hospitals, salons and even the priceless art in the Sistine Chapel. The PuraShield 500 is engineered with a multi-stage filtration system that removes 99.999% of aerosols carrying viruses and can clean the air every 10 minutes in an average-sized aestheticians environment. Patented by Purafil, a market leader in air filtration for over 50 years. Visit purafil.com and check out their indoor air quality equipment to learn more and log on to ascpskincare.com to view your exclusive membership discounts. 


0:01:45.4 Speaker 2: You are listening to ASCP Esty Talk, where we share insider tips, industry resources, and education for aestheticians at every stage of the journey. Let's talk, 'cause ASCP knows it's all about you. 


0:02:00.5 Ella Cressman: Hello, and welcome to ASCP Esty Talk The Ingredient Decked Out series where we explore the fascinating world of ingredients and how they affect the skin. I'm Ella Cressman, licenced aesthetician, certified organic formulator, owner of the HHP Collective and a complete ingredient junky. Now, we are in May currently and it is my favourite month, not just because it is my birthday month, thanks mom, but because we also celebrate mothers. And because of that, we are going to talk about mother molecules today. In skincare, especially in professional skincare, there are three huge categories that we often discuss, especially now in our industry. Of course, first and foremost, always and forever, antioxidants. We know they are a huge part of the fight against aging, especially from the inside out, but our scope of practise focusing on the latter. Second, we're going to talk about cannabinoids. Unless you've been giving facials under a rock for the past few years, chances are you, your clientele, your patients, or all of the above have been and continue to talk about cannabinoids. And lastly, of course, no aesthetic practise would be complete without the mention of exfoliation and in particular, carboxylic acids. 


0:03:25.8 EC: So let's get into the first mother molecule: Glutathione, the mother antioxidant. This is one of my favourite words to say and it's also one of my favourite mother molecules. Glutathione is an extremely important endogenous compound, that means we make it on our own, and it is imperative to our physiology, not just skin health, but entire body health. It's not a new power compound. In fact, we are born with a healthy supply locked and loaded within nearly every cell of our bodies. Glutathione is involved in many biological processes, including building and repairing tissue, making chemicals and proteins essential for the body, and fortifying the immune system all while acting as an antioxidant. Generally, antioxidants have a short life span and are exhausted after combating free radicals, so they're little soldiers if you wanna think about it like that. They come in, they fight the battle and then they're done. But glutathione is different. Glutathione converts to glutathione disulfide when it encounters, absorbs and destroys free radicals, but what's really cool is that glutathione disulfide, the oxidised version, is then converted back to glutathione and it restores to its full free radical fighting capacity. 


0:04:45.2 EC: I like to think of it in this analogy and this is just an analogy, this doesn't really happen, but think of it like this, think of it like a grape that turns into a raisin and then turns back into a grape continuously, repeatedly. Pretty cool, right? But that's not all. What makes this mother molecule so awesome and you think about it, you know the super powers that mothers have, is that it's not only able to recharge itself, but it also resuscitates other spent antioxidants, including vitamin C and E. So, if we look back to the analogy I gave about the grape, that would mean the grape recharges and restores other dried fruit. Dried mango, dehydrated apple slices, freeze-dried strawberries, all return back to fresh fruit with glutathione. Wait, what? I mean, not that there's anything wrong with dried fruit. And remember, this is an analogy, but I think you get the picture. That's amazing. So, because of this property, glutathione is often referred to as the master or mother antioxidant because of its ability to restore itself and other antioxidants. And additionally, for its effect in not only stopping, but reversing the damage caused by free radicals. If you've ever been to one of my live classes, you will know my analogy on free radicals, they are... If you've been in my class, you'll know what crazy ex-girlfriend means, and if not, we will do another podcast on that. [laughter] 


0:06:23.3 EC: But anyways, glutathione is the superhero or the superheroine ingredient, but it's not infinitely available. So, it has this ability to recharge, recharge, get everybody ready for school, get the office people in order, you know things like that but at some point it is spent. Most glutathione is made inside the body from three amino acids; glutamic acid, cysteine, and glycine, but as we age, our glutathione levels decrease naturally. Now, if we lived completely healthy lifestyles, our natural back stock would be sufficient to carry us into old age, but once we add in the factors of processed foods, caffeine, stress, and basically, our current standard of living, we are challenged then with rapid depletion and eventually glutathione deficiency. Now, a glutathione deficiency would then lead to increased opportunity for oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is an imbalance of free radicals and antioxidants in the body where there would be more free radicals than antioxidants and then guess who's winning the battle? A surplus of free radicals lead to disease, disorder, and in our scope of practise, advanced aging. 


0:07:39.8 EC: So what we need, we need to stimulate healthy glutathione levels, and we do that with a healthy balanced diet that includes sulphur-rich foods, naturally occurring in vitamin C, selenium and even whey protein. This is what encourages glutathione synthesis, and that is what is necessary for healthy body and complexion, but we're living in a time when that isn't always realistic. So, while there is also opportunity to... Though I am a huge fan of healthy living for a healthy complexion, but great news, there is topical stimulation opportunity. So glutathione's best friend as concerning the skin complexion is hexylresorcinol. And hexylresorcinol works to stimulate natural glutathione production. And products containing glutathione and hexylresorcinol, in addition to antioxidants like vitamin C, will be effective for lightening, brightening any skin type and any skin tone, so best friends, like they are the three best friends that ever were however that song goes. In summary, the benefits of glutathione is that it's anti-inflammatory, extremely anti-inflammatory, helps to regulate pigment and it is a key component for fighting against acne as well as aging and pigment, everybody's best friend. Hey guys, stop. Let's take a quick break. 


0:09:01.5 S2: Sorella Apothecary is a botanically based professional skincare line that is the perfect balance of science and nature. Created for the aesthetician by the aesthetician, Sorella supports their partners by offering monthly educational webinars, in-depth product knowledge sessions, seasonal protocols and unique training on new products. Professional partners also have full access to marketing materials and customer service support to help build and evolve their business. Feed your skin, treat your soul. If you're interested in learning more about partnering with Sorella, email hello@sorellaapothecary.com


0:09:45.0 EC: Let's get back to the conversation. Next, we're going to talk about the mother cannabinoid, CBG. For years, the best known, most popular cannabinoid was THC, but with that came a stigma, an association with lazy and elicit behaviours, stoner mentality. But then recently within the last 10 years, three other little letters CBD became the well-behaving superstar that began to show up everywhere, promising relief from anxiety to acne. It has been more than six years of witnessing the exciting trend of CBD and hemp CBD-infused skincare products flooding the professional and consumer market. We see it from gas station to high-end med spas, this is a compound that cannot be missed. But CBG, a lesser known but important cannabinoid is making quite its entrance of its own. Mark my words, in the near future, you will start hearing more and more and more about this compound. Where CBD and THC are considered major cannabinoids, CBG is considered minor and that's because of its relative presence in mature cannabis plants and because the number of available studies on CBG, specifically. But in fairness, there is limited clinical information because it wasn't showing up on stage, should we say. 


0:11:13.9 EC: What is available on CBG is holding promise for topical benefit, and that's what makes it super exciting for the professional skincare market. What we do know about CBG, is there's an acidic form and then a decarboxylated form, so we know CBD, THC, those are decarboxylated forms and I don't wanna get too far into organic chemistry, but we'll just call those the raw forms. So, in the raw forms, cannabinoids are actually assets, so CBGA or the cannabigerolic acid is the precursor then to all other cannabinoids, THCA, CBDA, CBNA, all of them, so let's just simplify and call it CBG. CBG is the mother or stem cell for THC and CBD. So CBG levels in cannabis, all cannabinoids start out as CBG, but then the levels are influenced. CBG is influenced by the age of the plant, weather and other contributing factors like pesticides and such, where a younger hemp cannabis flower may contain high levels of CBG, older plants with more exposure to the elements wind, sun, rain has allowed for the CBG to convert into THC, CBD, and there's like a 116, over 116 other minor cannabinoids. Without CBG, we would not have CBD, THC or anything else. 


0:12:40.3 EC: So, we know that, thank you to the CBD trend and is well known now, that endocannabinoid system is a system in our body that is built on these receptors, CB1 and CB2. They're all throughout the body in nearly every cell, but the receptors found in the skin communicate with cannabinoids, like CBD and CBG and terpenes, but that's another podcast. And that results in an influence in several histological functions, and those are everything from regulating skin cell proliferation or production, to sebum, and melanocyte production as well as having an influence on the skin's immune function, just to name a few. CBG is also a cannabinoid and it communicates with the body's endocannabinoid system, same as CBD and THC, but it is a powerful antioxidant anti-inflammatory, and it is also showing amazing promise for dry skin, where CBD is great at balancing sebum production, the Goldilocks this is too little. This is too much. This is just right. 


0:13:41.0 EC: CBG is great for those dry skin conditions because it stimulates sebum production, slight difference, but amazing and still very valuable. There is some recent publications, there's one in particular, the molecule's journal of chemistry, and the title of the paper is called Cannabinoid Signalling in the Skin specifically. This is an amazing article, it's very hard to read, but the summary is that CBG is a phyto cannabinoid that works with the skin to encourage balance, and that there is a lot of excitement in the dermatological world for this also, because it helps to produce our body's own natural endocannabinoids. Very fascinating. 


0:14:23.6 EC: Lastly, we're going to talk a little bit about Organic Chemistry when we take a look at carboxylic acids, which really could be a mother, a grandmother, or a great grandmother, your favourite aunt, all of the above, because there are so many contributions of carboxylic acids in skincare. Carboxylic acids are a carbon atom, doubly bonded to an oxygen atom and also joined to an OH group. That sounds complicated. Let's break it down. When we look at where carboxylic acids are in, as related to skincare, let's start first with amino acids, we know amino acids are essential for healthy skin production, and we supplement with peptides and fatty acids. Fatty acids are essential for healthy skin to repair and defend and guess what, their base is carboxylic acids. And then on to my favourite group of carboxylic acids are exfoliating acids. We are very familiar with alpha and beta hydroxy acids, and we know the carbon chain is what influences specifically in alpha hydroxy acids. The carbon chain influences the depth of penetration. Let's take a look at lactic acid versus glycolic or mandelic. So glycolic acid has a two carbon chain, lactic acid has a three carbon chain, mandelic acid has an eight carbon chain. The longer the carbon chain, the more superficial the penetration, the shorter the chain the deeper the penetration. 


0:16:01.2 EC: This is why we know glycolic acid at the right pH, of course, is going to penetrate and encourage more exfoliation than mandelic acid, which is going to be at a different depth, so very important contributions of carboxylic acid and also retinoic acid is a carboxylic acid. So, great contributions we want to thank in this mother month. We want to thank our mother molecules, so thank you glutathione, thank you cannabinoids, and thank you carboxylic acids. Thank you also for tuning in to ASCP Esty Talk. My name is Ella Cressman and I look forward to the next episode. 


0:16:40.7 EC: Thanks for joining us today. If you like what you hear and you want more, subscribe. If you wanna belong to the only all-inclusive association for aestheticians that includes professional liability insurance, education, industry insights, and an opportunity to spotlight your six skills. Join at ASCPSkinCare.com, only $259 per year for all this goodness. ASCP knows it's all about you.

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