Protect your skin by armoring it with natural antioxidants. These five will help give your skin the youthful glow you want.

By Ayren Jackson-Cannady
Updated July 31, 2019
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Just like a jacket shields your clothes from a rain shower, topical antioxidants protect your skin from free radicals, which are the molecules produced by environmental elements like the sun and tobacco smoke. So what does this mean for you? "Antioxidants can slow skin aging and reduce the appearance of fine lines," says David Colbert, M.D., a New York City dermatologist. Read on for some of the experts' favorite beauty-boosting antioxidants.

Image courtesy of Walmart.

1. Vitamin E

Vitamin E is naturally found in the skin (plus, many of the foods we eat like spinach and almonds). This antioxidant fires up collagen production, which in turn fills in fine lines and reduces the appearance of age spots.

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2. Lycopene

If you've eaten a tomato or a guava, chances are you've consumed lycopene, a carotenoid that gives red and pink fruits their vibrant color. In addition to revving up collagen production when applied topically, this powerful antioxidant evens out skin texture by filtering out some of the DNA damage.

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3. Coffee Berry

These little red berries plucked from the coffee plant are one of the most potent antioxidants, making it a popular add-in for skin care products. Coffee berry prevents collagen damage, reduces wrinkles, and protects the skin against damage. But the beauty benefits don't end there. It also has an anti-inflammatory effect on skin, which can lessen the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and create a more youthful glow.

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4. Vitamin C

You already know how helpful Vitamin C is for warding off unwanted colds when consumed orally (hello, orange juice!). Now, some studies show that it also helps protect against free radicals and boost collagen production. Dr. Colbert likes to use Vitamin C around the eyes, "an area of the face highly prone to sun damage and aging." Unfortunately, your skin won't see many anti-aging benefits just by adding more oranges into your diet. But dermatologists say, if small enough, Vitamin C molecules can penetrate skin to smooth out fine lines.

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5. Green Tea

It's not just for sipping! Green tea is an antioxidant that contains chemicals called catechins that help reverse wrinkles and blemishes. FYI: Green tea has five times more catechins than black tea. When applied to skin, green tea extract reduces inflammation, thus minimizing the appearance of sun damage (think: fine lines and age spots).

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These nature-powered antioxidants can reduce signs of aging and give skin a healthy, youthful glow. The next time you're out shopping for new beauty supplies, check their labels for these skin-improving ingredients.