Risks and Rewards of DMAE

DMAE: The Risks and Rewards

DMAE: is a naturally occurring substance produced in the brain. Its been studied in recent years for its ability to improve cognition and memory, and more recently, DMAE has shown amazing ability to improve the quality of the skin.

The skin correcting abilities of DMAE are exciting. It has been demonstrated that DMAE may improve skin and pore tightening, as well as increase the thickness of the lower skin layer, the dermis.

DMAE has also been shown to improve cognition, memory, and other brain functions through supplementation. Truly these aspects make DMAE an intriguing ingredient for natural health and beauty.

That said, possible long term side effects and controversies over it having any real effect at all provokes our interest on whether or not DMAE should be used in health supplementation or beauty applications.

How DMAE Works

DMAE, dimethylaminoethanol, is a naturally occurring substance, which is thought to stimulate the synthesis of phosphatidylcholine, a fatty acid that is an important component of cell membranes. Basically, this means it helps nerve cells communicate. Researchers believe it may help protect from free-radical damage and actually repair cell membranes damaged by free radicals. This has reward implications both inside the body and on the skin.

Rewards of DMAE in Skin Care

DMAE has been demonstrated to benefit the skin by improving skin texture and appearance when applied topically because it can actually penetrate and thicken the dermis naturally.

A 2002 study showed promise with DMAE improving areas of the skin that were loose as well as enhancing the skin’s plumpness. In a 2007 double-blind study, 25 individuals showed improvement in skin firmness. Further, in 2009, it was concluded that DMAE increased dermal thickness and collagen fiber thickness as well.

This is great news for skin care. Not only is DMAE a natural substance the body understands, but it actually works to plump, firm, correct, and improve skin quality. The regenerative benefits mean reduced wrinkle formation and younger looking skin.

Related: Uplifting Nutrient Organic Skin Serum with DMAE

Rewards of DMAE in Health Supplementation

DMAE is found in small species fish, as well as salmon, however, while these foods definitely have benefit, its unlikely that you will get a therapeutic amount of DMAE from eating these foods.

In summary, DMAE’s role in stimulating an important neurotransmitter, makes it a an exciting enhancement supplement for the brain. Because of this exciting aspect of the substance, there are a multitude of DMAE dietary supplements on the market.

Individuals suffering from dementia, Alzheimer’s, ADD, ADHD, and other brain-related ailments have shown improvement with DMAE. It is shown to boost brain chemicals (acetylcholine) that aid memory and cognition.

While there are many brain and mood benefits that can be had from DMAE supplementation, when taken orally, DMAE can benefit both the body and the skin.

DMAE Risks & Side Effects

DMAE Supplementation

When taking any dietary supplement, it is wise to consider all the findings and potential side effects. Not all research has yielded positive results. Pregnant women, or women who intend to get pregnant, are not recommended to take a DMAE supplement. Also, some research found no improvement at all in brain function.

In one study, there were side effects of drowsiness and confusion at higher doses. So be sure to consult with your doctor regarding the best dosage for you to retain all the health benefits while reducing the possibility of negative side effects.

Skin Applications

The observed plumping effect of the skin was largely due to vacuolization. Vacuolization is, in essence, vacuoles (pockets) of water inside the cell. This can be good, but there is also a caution.

A cell will vacuolate as a mechanism for damage limitation. Not enough is really known about the effects of this on the skin, but it has been observed that when the damage limitation of this process fails, the cells tend to die off quicker.

Compare it as the difference between a nice refreshing bath, to drowning in the ocean. Water is good. Too much water is bad.

The studies that observed this effect used a unusually high concentrations of DMAE for extended periods of time. When applying DMAE topically, we recommend lower concentrations to receive the full benefit to the skin. It should be noted, as well, that bombarding your skin with ANY compound in high concentration can kill fibroblasts (vitamin C, green tea, retinol, etc.), which is why we advise against commercial and chemical concentrations of any of these ingredients.

After reviewing all the research, we conclude that DMAE is an excellent natural ingredient for topical skin care. When applied in moderate, safe amounts, the results are shown over time without any harm to the skin.

The benefits to the skin are extended gradually and visibly, resulting in more healthy, more youthful looking skin. Users of the Uplifting Nutrients Serum have reported these same great skin-correcting results after 12 weeks of continuous use.

Related: Nourishing Pomegranate Cleanser with DMAE

Natural Sources of DMAE

Some natural sources of DMAE can be found in organic eggs, wild salmon, wild anchovies, and wild sardines. For therapeutic use, however, it is unlikely that you will be able to get enough DMAE from your diet without a topical or dietary supplement.

Organic Skin Care Products with DMAE

Elavonne’s Organic Essentials Kit delivers all the natural, gentle benefits of DMAE and organic nutrients. These products will never overdo it on your skin, and will uncover the most beautiful healthy skin with continuous use without harming or disrupting your body’s inner workings.

Organic Skin Care Set

Related: Why Organic Skin Care is Better for Your Skin and Your Body

Cites and References

Split face study on the cutaneous tensile effect of 2-dimethylaminoethanol (deanol) gel. Isabelle Uhoda,Najat Faska,Caroline Robert,Geert Cauwenbergh, Gérald. E. Piérard. First published: August 2002Full publication history DOI: 10.1034/j.1600-0846.2002.10295.

Randomised, placebo-controlled, double-blind, split-face study on the clinical efficacy of Tricutan® on skin firmness. B. Sommerfeld, Dermatology Clinic, Danavägen 7B, SE-18131 Lidingö, Sweden. 17 September 2007.

In vivo skin effects of a dimethylaminoethanol (DMAE) based formulation
Authors: Tadini, K.A.1; Campos, P.M.B.G. Maia2 Source: Die Pharmazie – An International Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Volume 64, Number 12, 1 December 2009, pp. 818-822(5)


Br J Dermatol. 2007 Mar;156(3):433-9. The antiwrinkle effect of topical concentrated 2-dimethylaminoethanol involves a vacuolar cytopathology. Morissette G1, Germain L, Marceau F.

Biol Cell. 1999 Sep;91(7):485-98. Cytoplasmic vacuolation, adaptation and cell death: a view on new perspectives and features. Henics T1, Wheatley DN.

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