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Dermagenics Ultra Anti-aging Moisturizer- reviewed and recommended

Is a Solution for:
Sagging Skin
January 10, 2011 Reviewed by Marta 8 Comments
I am irredeemably high maintenance when it comes to skincare. Even if I didn’t have a website giving me the perfect excuse to indulge myself, I would not have a simple skincare routine. I believe that micro-targeting (specific skin issues) is more successful than expecting my skin to behave the same everywhere everyday. Nonetheless, I have spent the past month testing a multitasker that promised me I would need no other face serum, toner or eye cream. Dermagenics Ultra Anti-aging Moisturizer ($85 and now in the TIA store) hasn’t quite won me over to the austerity of one cream fits all, but it performed the tasks I set it well enough for me to heartily recommend it for anyone who craves simplicity.

Dermagenics Ultra Anti-aging Moisturizer is based on a peptide called hexapeptide-9 and artemia extract, which are supposed to boost collagen production amongst other things. I’ll come back to the ingredients in a moment after giving you a bit more color on how Dermagenics performed. I found it to be a good face cream that is pleasantly, but not overly moisturizing and does a good job at smoothing out forehead lines. I wasn’t all that impressed with it as an eye cream though and after 10 days stopped using it as such. I am delighted, however, with it as a hand cream. My hands have been looking dry and sun damaged and I have been looking for something to take care of them before matters get worse. Dermagenics Ultra has done such a good job smoothing and plumping the skin on the backs of my hands and fading some hyperpigmentation, that it will be kept in service until the pot is finished.

I should also mention that the texture of Ultra is very light and extremely well-behaved: it smooths on easily, is completely absorbed, leaving no greasy residue and it is without much scent.

So back to the ingredients. Hexapeptide-9 is often marketed under the name Collaxyl and is widely touted as a repairer of acne scars. A relatively new peptide, hexapeptide-9 is supposed to boost collagen synthesis, although I couldn’t find any studies that back this up.  On the other hand, artemia comes with a better pedigree. According to researchers this alga is pretty impressive. It boosts the effects of other anti-aging ingredients, protects DNA against UV and free radicals.

There are three moisture givers that also play an important role. I particularly like phospholipids. This ingredient is a veritable workhorse that retains moisture, helps other ingredients penetrate and imparts antioxidants.  There’s also quenching squalane and sodium hyaluronate. In addition, there is a powerful and stable form of vitamin C, tetrahexydecyl ascorbate, and antioxidant green tea.

Dermagenics does seem to help fade hyperpigmented skin, but it doesn't use typical ingredients to do so. In fact, the company makes much of its decision to eshew AHAs and glycolic acid. The company’s CEO wrote explaining this to me and here is what she said:

Although Glycolic acid, AHA (lactic, citric, mandelic acid) are known to have positive epidermal and dermal effects when used as a stand alone product, causing increased cell turn over by their peeling effect, we believe rejuvenation can be achieved by safer ways.

Glycolic acid and AHA’s rely on a low pH of about 2 to be effective at drying and peeling the skin. On the other hand, moisturizing products operate in the normal skin pH range of about 5. Moisturizers claiming to have Alpha Hydroxys and/or Glycolic Acids in them will actually neutralize the acids, thus rendering the acids inactive. Thus, it becomes more of a marketing issue than a skin health issue. Additionally, there is some gray area as to the efficacy of over use of AHA and Glycolics, even at this reduced effectiveness combination.

By using a Hexapeptide-9 combined with the artemia extract, delivered by way of our trans-dermal penetration process, we achieve a collagen and elastin synthesis at the dermal-epidermal junction, in a way that is both more effective and safe.

As I mentioned in my introductory post on Dermagenics Anti-aging Moisturizer, I could do without the silicone and the usual suspects in the preservative department. These quibbles aside, this is a good product especially for anyone who wants to keep their beauty regimen streamlined.


Purified water, squalane, ceresin, sodium acrylates copolymer, hydrogenated polyisobutene, phospholipids, polyglyceryl-10 stearate, sunflower seed oil, hexapeptide-9, cyclopentasilioxane, dimethicone, vinyl dimethicone crosspolymer, glycerin, ethoxydiglycol, jojoba oil, sodium hyaluronate, artemia extract, sodium pca, green tea extract, tetrahexydecyl ascorbate, allantoin, phenoxyethanol, mixed tocopherol, methylparaben, propylparaben.
  • July 12, 2014


    too bad it contains parabens

  • February 2, 2011

    by Susan

    Too many polymers. :-(

  • January 11, 2011

    by marta

    Hi Julie - I am mot sure if this Dermagenics product would deal with discoloration to that extent. I would recommend YBF's prep and then try Ultra as well.

  • January 11, 2011

    by marta

    Hi Dennis - the one that is top of mind is La Vie Celeste's glycolic mask. I will research more and try to put together a list - and look into the polyhydroxy issue while I'm at it. Thanks for the great questions.

  • January 11, 2011

    by Valerie

    What about "Hypo"-pigmentation (loss of pigment), for no apparent reason, my back developed paler spots. I know it's not vitiligo because my dermatologist said it could be due to a sun irritation.I never tried anything for it, since it does not bother me much.

    But, I am curious to know if there is anything that could help with that?

  • January 10, 2011

    by Dennis

    Marta, do you know of or recommend any AHA creams with the correct PH balance? I've been using Reviva's Renaissance cream 10% AHA and I can't begin to tell you how much it has improved my tone and brightness.

    Also, does the PH issue also apply to the new polyhdroxy acids?

    Meanwhile I would love to try the Dermagenics as this is, from what I know one of, one the few creams to have the tetrahexydecyl ascorbate in it, which definitely peaks my interest, but I still have a problem with parabens. I'm trying to get over it.

  • January 10, 2011

    by Emily

    Dear Marta,
    Thank you so much for taking the time to do an in-depth and extremely thoughtful review our product, and for being honest and candid about the feedback. I'm glad that you found it to be a good moisturizer.

    All the best,
    Emily Throckmorton
    Director of Marketing

  • January 10, 2011

    by Julie Kay

    Marta- my best friend has many discolorations on her chest area from sun exposure. I've been trying to find and recommend the best for her to try to diminish these while also moisturizing. Do you think Dermagenics Ultra would be a good choice? ~Grasshopper

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