Packaged in a unique pebble-shaped bottle, this creamy gel moisturizer contains peptides as well as a calming centella asiatica extract. Also nice: It’s fragrance-free and has a lightweight gel texture that absorbs lightning fast. They’re usually derived from keratin—a protein that gives hair and nails their structure, among other things—and seem to work by improving skin barrier function, allowing it retain more water and give the skin a plumper look. We’re going to break down what exactly is a serum, what can a serum do, and take a look at some of the best face serums available today. If your skin is prone to acne and flare ups, reach for a serum packed with vitamin C (to reduce inflammation), soothing zinc, salicylic acid to gently exfoliate skin and retinol, which also tackles spots. “Basically, as we age, we’re hoping to keep our skin thick,” Mary L. Stevenson, M.D., assistant professor in the Ronald O. Perelman Department of Dermatology at NYU Langone Health, tells SELF, tells SELF. (One small study found copper peptides to be comparable to tretinoin.) THOSE RELATIONSHIPS MAY AFFECT HOW WE REVIEW AND RANK PRODUCTS OR SERVICES MENTIONED ON THE SITE. Apply two to three drops at night and massage gently into the skin, and wake up to softer, smoother skin. A serum is thicker and gooier while an essence has a watery texture. Peptides are molecules made up of relatively short chains of amino acids. Jeannette Graf says retinol can help “normalize and restore the epidermis and stimulate collagen production in the dermis.” It’s complicated. (By the way, the prefix oligo- literally means “few” and usually refers to peptides with 20 amino acids or fewer—which covers pretty much every peptide used in cosmetics.). Thanks to its lightweight formula, you can use this peptide serum on its own or mix it into a moisturizer or other serum to get the texture you prefer. Depending on your skincare needs, you may need a daytime serum in addition to a night serum. There are a lot of them too. “The most common ingredient is copper, which helps with wound healing.” Most products simply list copper peptides on the ingredients, but some products also use manganese carrier peptides in the form of manganese tripeptide-1. The experts weigh in on the over-the-counter formulas that make the biggest difference. All products featured on SELF are independently selected by our editors. Try one with glycolic acid or AHAs to gently dissolve dead skin cells and keep the cell renewal process running smoothly. While many of us strive to be minimalist when it comes to our closets (thanks, Marie Kondo) it is harder to streamline your beauty products. 10 of 15. They can also help boost smoothness and brightness, and work to reduce fine lines and wrinkles. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Condé Nast. Are you ready to pack a punch with peptides? Serums are packed with good-for-you ingredients such as antioxidants, vitamins, peptides, and hyaluronic acid which work together to brighten, exfoliate and hydrate the skin. Although they seem to work in similar ways, we know way less about peptides than we do about retinoids, and there aren’t many studies comparing them directly. Okay, so peptide creams can’t match the wrinkle-busting power of Botox and lasers. But, as Dr. González explains, those results may not transfer to skin-care benefits: “Wounded and healthy skin have different topographies, so we don’t know if [copper peptides] work the same on healthy skin,” she says. The sun, pollution, smoking and a poor diet can also speed up collagen loss. Chanel fans can also try Le Lift, whose hero ingredient is an extract from the edulis morning glory. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Chanel used three active ingredients found in the diets of the Blue Zone population – including olive oil, green coffee and lentisk gum which help improve skin texture and smooth out wrinkles. The TNS Recovery Complex is a mix of proteins and antioxidants to soften fine lines and wrinkles. It’s important to choose the right serum for your skin type and skincare needs. “Pro-collagen segments can actually stimulate collagen production, but they can also signal skin [cells] that enough collagen has been broken down,” thus preventing your body from breaking down any more. If a 10-step routine is not for you, you could skip the essence and just use a serum. Serums can also help brighten skin and fade dark spots, and also improve the smoothness and suppleness of the skin. There are some peer-reviewed studies that test the efficacy of peptide products on actual human skin, and the results suggest that peptides seem to actually work. Best Serum: Neocutis Micro Serum Intensive Anti-Aging and Tightening Treatment Buy on Dermstore To really get the most bang for your buck, opt for a serum over a cream; they’re more lightweight and contain a higher concentration of active ingredients. Borghese Crema Intensiva Intensive Firming Creme Borghese's firming cream is designed to reverse skin laxity, also known simply as sagging skin, according to anti-aging skincare expert Paula Begoun. And perhaps more importantly, do you need to splash out half your monthly income for the best peptide serum? Clarins’ Double Serum is one of the brand’s best-sellers and is formulated to leave skin radiant, supple and hydrated. Best for Dry Skin . Estee Lauder’s Advanced Night Repair is a hard working multi-tasker. For example, copper peptides have in fact been shown to improve wound healing, which is partially why people started putting them in cosmetics. You may also want to look for soothing ingredients such as aloe vera or licorice to help keep skin calm and protected. This lightweight serum contains copper peptides, which may help reduce inflammation as well as signs of aging. Hyaluronic acid, for added firmness and a patented antioxidant complex, to protect the skin against environmental stress. This serum, which can be used all over the face, neck, and eye area, boasts a high concentration of peptides. THE BEST MATRIXYL PEPTIDE SERUMS. They target sagging areas of the jawline, under the eyes and around the mouth. An essence is a key step in Korean and Japanese beauty routines.
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