Our Rating: 5 stars

E’shee KI Therapy Serum - Elixir of Life ($189 in the shop) is having astonishing results on my skin. I started to use it after I finished my bottle of AQ serum and so, it has to be said, my skin was looking good to start with. But within two to three weeks my skin was looking even plumper, firmer and smoother. I have been using the bottle (which I was given as a free sample) greedily ever since, observing an effect even on some stubborn lines. E’shee has done it again, but the question is how. And the answer is I am not sure – even after a journey into the strange world of infra-red ceramics.

One of the key actives is Far Infrared Ceramic Powder. It is also known as cFIR and in Asia, especially in Japan, it is regarded as a life-giving miracle worker that is actually woven into fabric (bedding, underwear, shoe insoles – you name it) in the belief that it can slim you down, defy toxins and cell phone radiation, help you sleep and that’s just for starters. Feeling skeptical? Trust me, my skept-ometer went way into the red zone. However, I spent hours trying to research this stuff and there is something to it.

So what on earth is it? It is a ceramic powder that emits Far infra-red wavelengths. Sound far-fetched? Well, it seems that even you and I emit infra-red wavelengths. Apparently, our bodies radiate far infrared (FIR) energy through the skin at around 9.4 microns. Our palms emit slightly more, between 8 and 14 microns. In Asia, some believe that “palm” or Reiki healing is due to this infra-red energy. I don’t know about that, but I have been able to find quite a bit of convincing research on what ceramic FIR (cFIR) can do.

For instance, I came across a study claiming that ceramic powder (cFIR) delayed the onset of muscle fatigue and other researchers have found that infrared rays emitted from ceramic powder could be used for increasing the period of storage and freshness of crops, fruits, and vegetables.

Supposedly, Far infrared waves are the longest rays in the light spectrum and easily absorbed by the body to a depth of up to 3 inches. There they can do useful things. Wound healing being one of them. A Japanese study found that wound healing “was significantly more rapid with than without FIR.” And – this is particularly relevant for me and my E’shee KI serum – findings also revealed “greater collagen regeneration and infiltration of fibroblasts that expressed transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1).”

Nevertheless, the mechanisms through which FIR works remain unclear. Speculation that it has something to do with boosting blood flow in the skin was scotched by a study on rats (source). However, the aforementioned Japanese study suggests that it might have to do with encouraging the TGF-β1 growth factor or the activation of fibroblasts.

Talking of growth factors, E’shee KI Therapy has the brand’s signature FGF peptides, which are – in the words of E’shee’s founder, Nataly Giter, the basic building blocks of any fibrous tissue in human body. There are also a good handful of botanicals: witch hazel, panax ginseng, chamomile, licorice, epilobium angustifolium (willowherb and an anti-irritant as well as a source of vitamin C) and calendula. Interestingly, there is also glutamic acid, a precursor to GABA, a neuro-transmitter.

E’shee doesn’t formulate for purists and there are all the usual suspects in the preservative department. I must say, though, that I am willingly turning a blind eye for as long as K1 works as well as it is now.

Ingredients: Water (Aqua), Butylene Glycol, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Extract, Dipropylene Glycol, Glycerin, Epilobium Angustifolium Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, Ethoxydiglycol, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Extract, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Panax Ginseng Root Extract, Phenyl Trimethicone, Glyceryl Diisostearate, Sodium Stearoyl Glutamate, Hexylene Glycol, Fructose, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Glycereth-25 PCA Isostearate, Polysorbate 20, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Alanine, Glutamic Acid, Allantoin, Panthenol, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Carbomer, Xanthan Gum, Hyaluronic Acid, Far Infrared Ceramic Powder, Fragrance (Parfum), Arginine, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Methylisothiazolinone, CI 19140, CI 16035, aFGF (Recombinant Human acidic Fibroblast Growth Factor)