What it is
Elastin is a protein that is found in the skin. It makes skin elastic and allows it to go back to its normal shape after it is pulled or stretched, but it depletes with age and sun exposure. Elastin used in skincare and cosmetics products can be derived from both plant and animal (mainly birds and cows) sources.
What it does
When used in topical products, Elastin doesn’t make skin elastic and flexible. That’s because Elastin molecules are too big to penetrate the skin, which is what they would have to do to increase elasticity.
However, Elastin remains on the skin’s surface, where it acts as a water-binding agent that prevents moisture loss.
Elastin is generally considered safe. However, marketing claims often imply that this ingredients does a lot more for the skin that just slowing down moisture loss and sadly, that’s not true.