A copper salt (copper cation + gluconate anion) probably best known for promoting cellular regeneration and wound healing. It works mainly in the final healing phase that complements nicely with the wound healing abilities of its mineral salt sister, zinc gluconate.
Other than that, copper is also involved in several enzyme systems: it is a cofactor for the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase and also a cofactor for the melanin stimulating enzyme, tyrosinase. This means that copper has some tan activating properties, though we think you should not be into tanning at all, as UV is so bad for the skin.
The gluconate part is there to promote the bioavailability of copper and it also plays a role in cellular regeneration (involved in the synthesis of ribose sugars, structural components of DNA and RNA).
Show me some proof
- Tenaud, I., et al. "In vitro modulation of keratinocyte wound healing integrins by zinc, copper and manganese." British Journal of Dermatology 140.1 (1999): 26-34.
- Tenaud, I., et al. "Zinc, copper and manganese enhanced keratinocyte migration through a functional modulation of keratinocyte integrins." Experimental dermatology 9.6 (2000): 407-416.
- Hubaud, Jean-Claude, and Daniele Thiry. "Suntan accelerator composition." U.S. Patent No. 5,075,102. 24 Dec. 1991.