Aging skin is an unfortunate fact of life. Lucky for us, anti-aging research has come a long way, and included in that research is the use of peptides in skin care.
But what is a peptide, exactly?
Peptides are the building blocks of proteins, and have become an essential ingredient in anti-aging skin care. They are a string of amino acids that are held together by bonds of nitrogen and carbon. Short chain peptides are able to penetrate the epidermis and send signals to cells, telling them how to function.
Many consider peptides to be one of the most effective treatments in repairing damaged and aging skin. There are many different types of peptides, which have various effects on the cellular function of the skin, but the most important thing to remember when using a peptide formula is diligence.
Results from peptides will generally not be visible for anywhere from 4 to 12 weeks. It can be discouraging to not see changes before that time, but routine use will deliver results. Once you begin to notice changes in your skin, it is important to remain diligent in the use of peptide products. If you discontinue using the products, your results will fade.
What do I need to look for?
- Matrixyl (Palmitoyl Pentapeptide-4) Consisting of five amino acids linked together, this peptide increases the synthesis of elastin and collagen. It has been shown to decrease skin roughness and reduce wrinkle volume. It also has been shown to decrease wrinkle depth after four months of applications on the face and neck, twice daily.
- Matrixyl 3000 (Palmitoyl Oligopeptide & Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7) Unlike the “classic” Matrixyl, this is a combination of two peptides, palmitoyl oligopeptide and palmitoyl tetrapeptide-7. These work together to increase skin’s permeability and decrease inflammation. It also reduces wrinkle depth and roughness of the skin.
- Argireline (Acetyl Hexapeptide-8) Composed of six amino acids, this peptide relaxes facial muscles that cause wrinkles through neurotransmitters that keep the signal protein from triggering muscle contraction. Unlike Botox, this peptide does not cause paralysis of the muscles. Instead, it relaxes them, while still allowing for normal facial movement.
- Soluble Keratin Peptide - There’s only one skin care brand that’s making use of this peptide (with 31 patents protecting it), but it’s a powerful one. Soluble Keratin Peptides are a group of small amino acid chains derived from natural keratin (wool) fibers. They act to repair damaged collagen and stimulate the production of new collagen, firming delicate skin and reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
What does this mean for my skin?
You basically can’t go wrong when choosing a product with peptides. Some dramatically reduce forehead wrinkles and neck laxity, while others can essentially erase dark circles and lines under eyes. Just make sure you are using them consistently. Remember that it will take time to see results, but just the same–those wrinkles didn’t appear overnight!