Five Best with Peptides 2013

There was once a time when dermatologists claimed that the only topical anti-aging ingredient worth its salt was retinol. Although many still stick with that story, the experience of many real women (including me) has demonstrated that peptides have been a huge breakthrough in anti-aging. Peptides are types of proteins made up of amino acids and are active molecules that send signals to your cells (the chemical structure resembles a heap of holiday ribbon). I’ve highlighted stellar products with peptides in the past, but I thought it was high time to focus on ones that really put their peptides front and center. For all you peptide-philes out there, these are the 2013 Five Best with Peptides.

  • BRAD Biophotonic Essential Elixir Multi-peptide

    BRAD Biophotonic Essential Elixir Multi-peptide ($95 in the shop). What is a peptide, but a chain of amino acids. There are more than a dozen here in BRAD Multi-peptide, which is a serum that I just keep going back to. My skin finds it extremely soothing and it leaves my complexion looking smoother, dewy and calm – as if it’s been on vacation. It is one of those products that got off to a slow start, but now its effects are cumulative and I know I’ll be buying a second bottle. One of the finds of the year.
  • Arcona Peptide Firming Complex

    Arcona Peptide Firming Complex ($72 in the shop). Arcona’s serum features Syn-tacks, which is, I have speculated, a possible contender for Matrixyl 3000’s anti-aging crown. Like M3000, Syn-tacks combines two peptides and they stimulate a broad spectrum of things responsible for youthful skin: laminin V, collagen types IV, VII and XVII and integrin – all at once. Arcona Peptide Firming Complex is a veritable cocktail of “out there” peptides, including Syn-coll, a small peptide with a unique sequence to mimic the human body’s own mechanism to produce collagen via TGF-ß. Plus there’s an unusual peptide, marketed under the name of Thymulen that is meant to stimulate and differentiate the keratinocytes that are the major cells of the epidermis.
  • Osmotics Blue Copper 5 Age Repair Body Lift

    Osmotics Blue Copper 5 Age Repair Body Lift ($95 in the shop). I was spurred to try this body cream by our reviewer, Nina’s, before and after pictures. It is not a body lotion, but is meant to target stretch marks and sagging, flabby parts. It promises to reduce stretch marks by up to 72%, and judging by Nina’s results, it does. I have found that it really tightens those dimply bits, and I am impressed. Age Repair Body lift uses copper peptides and there is that power peptide duo, Matrixyl 3000. Really good body treatments are hard to come by – this exception proves the rule by excelling.
  • Hair Vitality Complex by Truth In Aging

    Hair Vitality Complex by Truth In Aging ($49 in the shop). Copper peptides exist naturally in our tissues but there can be a 60% drop between the ages of 20 and 60. Copper peptides work on the follicle in two ways: increasing follicle cell proliferation and follicle size; and decreasing programmed follicle cell death. So copper can assist with healthy hair growth and reduced shedding. I use this three to four times a week and my hairline is completely filled in.
  • Your Best Face Control

    Your Best Face Control ($160 in the TIA shop). One of my favorite serums for nighttime, Control has a tripeptide called Syn-Hycan. Specifically, it is aimed at lifting sagging skin. It stimulates hyaluronan (HA) synthesis and expression of the proteoglycans, decorin and lumican. There is a second tripeptide that inhibits elastase activity and boosts collagen 1 synthesis. It has also been designed to treat sagginess and restore firmness to the skin. Peptide power sees no limits with Matrixyl 3000 and Syn-Tacks.