An In-Depth Look at the Function and Efficacy of Oral Glutathione for Skin Care

What is Glutathione?

GSSG Oxidized Glutathione
GSSG Oxidized Glutathione

Glutathione is an extremely powerful antioxidant with numerous applications within the realms of health and nutrition.  Its antioxidant and detoxifying properties safeguard cells from damage caused by reactive oxygen species and heavy metals.  Because of its essential role in protecting the human body, it has earned the nickname “The Master Antioxidant”.  For years, doctors have treated their patients with glutathione to relieve ailments raging from liver disease to cancer.

Doctors and patients began to notice an interesting side effect; patients receiving glutathione looked brighter and more radiant.  Dark, sallow skin lightened up giving a healthy glow.  Glutathione is now at the forefront of skin lightening esthetics due to its virtually nonexistent risk of side effects and astonishing natural results.


Glutathione for Skin Whitening

Whitening effect of 4 weeks
Whitening effect of 4 weeks

Glutathione skin whitening works by interrupting melanin synthesis (Matsuki et al 2008).  Melanin is the pigment that gives the skin its color, so by preventing it from developing, glutahtione whitening brings the skin back to its purest fairest tone.  It is clinically shown to reduce dark spots and whiten skin by inhibiting melanin synthesis (Arjinpathana & Asawanonda 2012).  It is often said that one’s health is reflected in the condition of his or her skin, and that is notably true when it comes to this method of skin whitening.  Glutathione benefits the skin by boosting overall health.  Since it is an antioxidant, it neutralizes and eliminates the free radicals that damage the skin at the cellular level to cause aging and discoloration.


‘The Master Antioxidant’

Glutathione acts on a number of biological pathways in the skin.  Its primary purpose is protection from skin’s greatest enemy, oxidation.  By acting as an antioxidant, glutathione can reduce skin damage from acne or sun exposure before it creates unsightly dark spots (Villarama & Maibach 2005).

This is part of the glutathione cycle, a perpetual cycle in which active glutathione is expended and restored to neutralize free radicals and other damaging oxidative chemicals.

The two enzymes within the glutathione cycle are glutathione peroxidase and glutathione reductase.  Glutathione peroxidase allows reduced glutathione to efficiently neutralize free radicals and peroxides.  At the end of this reaction, glutathione is left in its inactive, oxidized, form.  Oxidized glutathione is reduced back to its active state by glutathione reductase.  The enzymatic regeneration of active glutathione allows for it to be highly effective even against chronic stressors like sun exposure.

A 2010 publication by Reuter et. al, details the close link between these oxidative stresses with chronic inflammation and, ultimately, diseases such as cancer and diabetes.  Oxidative stress activates a number of pro-inflammatory mediators, notably NF-kB and PPAR-y, which cause the expression of inflammatory genes.


Melanin & Tyrosinase

Changes in melanin
Changes in melanin

Most people are already familiar with melanin, the pigment responsible for brown and yellow skin tones.  It is born in the melanocyte, deep in the epidermis, and travels to the outer epidermis where it is expressed as darkened skin tone.  But, the real driving force of skin darkening is the enzyme tyrosinase.  Tyrosinase catalyzes the formation of melanin during three separate stages of synthesis.  Therefore, in the resistance of skin darkening, tyrosinase inhibition is key.

Many molecules have been found to possess a tyrosinase inhibiting effect.  Unsurprisingly glutathione is a powerful inhibitor (Malathi & Thappa 2013).  This may be due to glutathione’s ability to prevent a chain reaction in which reactive oxygen species induce tyrosinase.



How to Supplement Glutathione?

Cellular glutathione can be supplemented through injection oral ingestion and sublingual administration.  Injection is popular among people looking for rapid results.  When glutathione is introduced directly into the bloodstream, it can quickly reach the melanocytes and keratinocytes where melanin is produced and stored.

Sublingual administration is very similar to intravenous.  A glutathione solution is held under the tongue where it diffuses through the mucous membrane into underlying capillaries.  this causes it to rapidly enter circulation and allows the glutathione to bypass the digestive tract. Many brands have begun to offer sprays or drops of liquid glutathione for the purpose of sublingual administration.

Lastly, glutathione capsules are becoming increasingly popular due to the ease of use compared to the other methods.  Daily oral doses of glutathione have been clinically proven to lighten skin.  Additionally, glutathione capsules can come with an array of glutathione boosting ingredients that help the body maintain high levels of cellular glutathione.

The pink glow
The pink glow


Relumins advance white
Relumins advance white

Relumins 15x Glutathione Complex

Relumins Labs is no offering the first ever full-sprectrum skin support and whitening supplement, the 15x Glutathione

Complex.  The ingredients in this blend not only rapidly increase cellular glutahtione, but actually produce a sustained level of elevated glutahtione due to supporting ingredients and precursors.  This is thanks to the 4 key elements of the supplement blend:  High Dose Glutathione, Phytonutrient Complex, GlutaBoost Complex and Bioflavonoid Complex.




Phytonutrient Complex

Natural plant ingredients contain some of the best skin protective and whitening compounds in the world.  The Relumins Phytonutrient Complex contains Green Tea Extract, a powerful antioxidant with natural sunburn protection and Rosehips which are rich in Vitamin C as well as the carotenoids Lutein and Zeaxanthin.  These ingredients demonstrate anti-inflammatory effects on the skin to help protect against the aging and darkening effects acne and sun related skin damage.  Furthermore, their antioxidant properties support sustained glutathione levels.

Green tea is a known tyrosinase inhibitor (Chang 2009) which may be due to its ability to quench free radicals and peroxides (Villarama & Maibach 2005).  Furthermore, green tea polyphenols possess the unique ability of reducing the severity of sunburn when taken orally (Rhodes et al 2013).  this is especially important due to the aging and darkening effects of sunburn.

Rosehips also demonstrate a unique and powerful skin protecting effect.  Lutein and Zeaxanthin, carotenoids found in rosehips,, inhibit the amount of activity of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) (Roberts & Lutein 2013).  MMPs are enzymes that are released into the dermis following exposure to UV.  They break down important structural proteins, destroying collagen and elastin and aging skin (Rijken & Brujinzeel 2009).


Glutaboost Complex

High dose glutathione will only go as far, as it is limited by its slow accumulation in cells.  To combat this factor, the Relumins 15x Glutahtione Complex contains ingredients that increase the body’s own glutahtione production and activity.  This glutahtione is produced inside your cells, so it does not need to pass through the stomach, intestines or blood.

N-acetyl-L-cystenine and Alpha Lipoic Acid supplement the body’s available cystein Kerksick & Willoughby 2005), an essential precursors of cellular glutathione.  this creates a sustained production of glutathione to minimize fluctuations between doses.  Furthermore, Alpha Lipoic Acid was shown to protect against the depletion of reduced glutathione in irradiated cells (Busse et al 1992).  This effect indicates that these boosters may prevent glutathione fluctuations even when stressors such as sun exposure are present.

The Glutaboost Complex also contains Selenomethionnine and Vitamin B2.  Each molecule contributes a benefit to the enzymes of the glutathione cycle.  Selenomethionine provides the selenium needed to form glutahtione peroxidase, which maintains glutahtione activity (Burke 1992), while Vitamin B2 is a cofactor of glutahtione reductase.


Bioflavonoid Complex

Soy isoflavone
Soy isoflavone

The Bioflavanoid Complex consists of a number of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory ingredients including carotenoids to combat skin damage.  This complex exhibits clinically proven anti-aging effects by promoting collagen, reducing under eye circles and improving blood flow.

Hesperidin and other citrus bioflavonoids strengthen blood vessels and reduces dark circles under eyes.  Soy Isoflavone improves the appearance of fine wrinkles and increases dermal blood vessels and papillae while also supporting collagen production (Toru et al 2007; Accorsi-neto et al 2009).  The citrus bioflavonoids have been observed to synergistically increase the effect of vitamin C and improve capillary strength.

Key elements
Key elements


Uneven skin tone
Uneven skin tone

Effects and Efficacy

The skin benefits of Relumins 15x Glutahtione Complex Fall into 6 main categories:

  1. Glutathione Support
  2. Tyrosinase Inhibition
  3. Antioxidation
  4. Anti-inflammatory
  5. Protection from Environmental Damage
  6. Anti-aging


Glutathione Support

This new synergistic formula is designed for maximum absorption, utilization and efficacy of glutathione.  Quercitin, Vitamin B2 and Alpha Lipoic Acid supplement available cystein (Icnal et al; Ashoori & Saedisomeolia 2014; Busse et al 1992; Kerksick & Willoughby 2005), an essential precursor of cellular glutahtione.

Selenomethionine provides the selenium needed to form glutahtione peroxidase, which maintains glutathione activity (Burke 1992).  Reduced glutathione is oxidized by reactive oxygen psecies (ROS) including free radicals and peroxides.  Because reduced glutathione is active in inhibiting the melanogenic pathway (Villarama & Maibach 2005), it is important to keep levels high.  Quenching ROS will maintain a higher reduced: oxidized glutahtione ratio (Villarama & Maibach 2005). Every ingredient in this formula contains potent antioxidants that protect and prolong glutathione activity.


Tyrosinase Inhibition

Tyrosinase is the master enzyme in melanogenesis, by inhibiting it, melanogenesis is slowed.  This formula contains many tyrosinase inhibitors, including: glutahtione, vitamin E, quercetin, hesperidin, citrus bioflavonoids, green tea extract and soy isoflavones (Chang 2009).  Tyrosinase activity can also be induced by free radicals and peroxides (Villarama & Maibach 2005), so antioxidants will demonstrate an inhibitive effect on tyrosinase.



Each ingredient in the formula was thoughtfully chosen for its effect and synergy.  It is no surprise that all 15 of them are antioxidants.  These protective molecules have an extremely broad range of skin protective benefits that aid in whitening and anti-aging.



Postinflammatory hyperpigmentation is common among darker skinned individuals (Davis & Callender 2010).  This is a phenomenon in which inflammatory injury, such as sunburn or acne, causes skin discoloration.  Preventing or inhibiting inflammation can minimize discoloration from injuries (Takiwaki et al 1994).  We achieved the desired effect through the inclusion of milk thistle, quercetin, hesperidin, rosehips, green tea and vitamin E (Vaid et al 2010; Comalada et al 2005; Abdelaziz et al 2014; Roberts 2013; Rhodes et al 2013; Parsa 1988).


Protection from Environmental Damage

Photo aged skin
Photo aged skin

Sunlight can damage skin by increasing oxidative stress, but antioxidants will effectively reduce UV induced ROS in the skin.  UV radiation also causes an influx of matrix-metalloproteinases and neutrophils containing proteolytic enzymes into the dermis.  These enzymes destroy colalgen and elastin and age skin (Rijken & Brujinzeel 2009).  Lutein & Zeaxanthin, carotenoids found in rosehips, inhibit the amount and activity of these enzymes (Roberts & Lutein 2013).

Many of the naturally occuring phytochemicals in the Relumins 15x Glutathione Complex protect against UV induced inflammation, oxidative stress, immunosuppression and skin cancer (Vaid & Katiyar 2010).  These ingredients include vitamin E, green tea polyphenols, silymarin and lutein.



Relumins 15x Glutathione Complex helps to reverse the signs of aging by supporting collagen production.  We have included L-methionine & soy isoflavone (Toru et al 2007) for their scientifically proven effects on collagen production.  Boosting collagen in essential in older skin, where reduced collagen levels cause wrinkles and sagging skin.

Soy Isoflavone is a phytoestrogen which improves the appearance of fine wrinkles and increases dermal blood vessels and papillae (Toru et al 2007; Accorsi-neto et al 2009).  This is a huge benefit to overall skin health, as older skin receives less nourishment from the blood and loses the structural support of papillae.  Furthermore, hesperidin and other citrus bioflavonoids strengthen blood vessels and reduce dark circles under eyes (Paulas Choice).



Relumins 15x Glutathione Blend is the first oral glutahtione product to truly rival the effectiveness of intravenous or sublingual administration.  By balancing high dose glutathione with sustained natural production, users can experience an immediate boost to cellular glutathione levels that won’t dwindle as quickly as other products.  The effects are a total spectrum of skin whitening, repair and anti-aging.  This is truly the perfect formula!

Relumins before and after images
Relumins before and after images

Whole article content from Relumins –



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