Today, we’re talking about peptides, the microscopic powerhouses that can work wonders for your skin. Our bodies are bustling with peptides, working tirelessly behind the scenes. They act as messengers, sending signals between cells and controlling many functions, from immune response to hormone regulation.
But what exactly are they?
What Can Peptides Do for Your Skin?
The primary job of peptides is to act as potent cellular messengers that communicate with skin cells, encouraging the production of collagen, elastin, and other essential proteins. This molecular messaging system is the secret behind their remarkable ability to promote firmer, smoother, and more youthful skin.
These amino acid trains are no one-trick pony, though. Let’s take a look at everything peptides have to offer:
Skin Barrier Penetration
One of the challenges in skincare is getting active ingredients to penetrate the skin’s outer layer, the stratum corneum, and reach the target cells. With their small size and ability to penetrate the skin barrier, Peptides efficiently deliver their benefits to the deeper layers of the skin, allowing them to stimulate cellular processes and improve overall skin health.
Collagen Synthesis and Skin Elasticity
Collagen is the most abundant protein in our skin, providing strength, structure, and elasticity. As we age, collagen production decreases, leading to wrinkles and sagging. Peptides help counteract this decline by stimulating skin cells to produce more collagen. The increased collagen synthesis results in firmer, more elastic skin with fewer wrinkles and fine lines.
Skin Healing and Repair
Peptides also play a role in skin healing and repair by encouraging the regeneration of skin cells and the formation of new blood vessels.
Hydration and Moisture Retention
Another way peptides work their magic is by enhancing skin hydration and moisture retention. They help to strengthen the skin’s natural moisture barrier, preventing water loss and keeping the skin plump and hydrated.
Peptides can also work synergistically with other skincare ingredients, such as antioxidants, retinoids, and hyaluronic acid, providing even more profound results.
Different Types of Peptides in Skincare
You’re spoiled for choice with so many peptide-packed products on the market! Serums, creams, and even masks all boast different types of peptides to address various skin concerns.
To harness the power of peptides, start by pinpointing your skincare concerns and goals. Are you aiming to reduce wrinkles and fine lines? Boost hydration? Improve skin texture? Once you know what you want to fix, look for products that contain these proven peptide ingredients:
Signal Peptides: The Skin Communicators
Often called “cell-communicating peptides,” signal peptides send messages to your skin cells to produce more collagen, elastin, and other vital proteins. By boosting the production of these proteins, they contribute to firmer, smoother, and younger-looking skin.
- Palmitoyl Pentapeptide-4, commonly known as Matrixyl, is a widely-used signal peptide in anti-aging skincare products.
- Palmitoyl Tripeptide-5 is a signal peptide known for its ability to boost collagen synthesis and protect existing collagen from degradation.
- Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7 is another potent signal peptide that helps to promote collagen production and reduce inflammation. It pairs beautifully with Palmitoyl Tripeptide-5, creating a dynamic duo frequently found in anti-aging products targeting wrinkles, fine lines, and skin firmness.
- Epidermal Growth Factor (EGF) is a naturally occurring signal peptide that promotes cell growth, differentiation, and healing. Oligopeptide-1 is a synthetic version of EGF, which, when applied topically, helps stimulate skin cell regeneration.
Carrier Peptides: The Skin Transporters
Carrier peptides, also known as “delivery” peptides or “escort” peptides, transport essential nutrients and minerals directly to your skin cells. By shuttling these nutritional elements, carrier peptides help your skin look and feel healthier and optimize the benefits of other active ingredients in your skincare products.
- Copper peptides, such as GHK-Cu (Gly-His-Lys-Cu), are among the most well-known carrier peptides. They have a strong affinity for copper ions, known for their wound-healing properties.
- Manganese peptides, like manganese tripeptide-1, help deliver manganese ions to the skin, where they can support skin regeneration and fight signs of aging.
- Iron plays a role in collagen synthesis and oxygen transport within the skin cells. Iron-based carrier peptides, such as ferritin or lactoferrin, help shuttle iron ions to the skin. They are fundamental in collagen synthesis and oxygen transport within the skin cells.
Enzyme-Inhibiting Peptides: The Skin Protectors
Enzyme-inhibiting peptides protect the skin by slowing down the enzymes responsible for breaking down essential skin proteins such as collagen and elastin. They help maintain your skin’s youthful structure and reduce the appearance of fine lines.
- Dipeptide-2 inhibits the activity of the angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE), which causes inflammation and puffiness around the eyes. It’s a popular ingredient in eye creams.
- Also known as Argireline, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8 not only functions as a neurotransmitter-inhibiting peptide but also demonstrates enzyme-inhibiting properties.
- Soy-rice peptides are derived from plant proteins and exhibit excellent enzyme-inhibiting capabilities. They work by reducing proteolytic enzyme activity, which breaks down skin proteins.
Neurotransmitter-Inhibiting Peptides: The Skin Relaxers
Neurotransmitter-inhibiting peptides have earned the nickname “Botox in a bottle” by inhibiting the release of certain neurotransmitters responsible for muscle contractions. By relaxing facial muscles, these peptides help to reduce the appearance of expression lines and wrinkles, providing a non-invasive, gentle alternative to more aggressive treatments like Botox injections.
- As mentioned above, Argireline is a well-known neurotransmitter-inhibiting peptide commonly found in anti-aging products targeting expression lines, such as those around the eyes and forehead.
- Pentapeptide-18, or Leuphasyl, is another neurotransmitter-inhibiting peptide that helps to reduce muscle contractions, particularly in combination with Argireline. This synergistic effect leads to a more pronounced reduction in the appearance of expression lines and wrinkles.
- Syn-Ake is a synthetic peptide designed to mimic the paralytic effects of snake venom.
Advanced Skin Therapeutics is proud to carry a range of peptide-based skin care, including Revision Skincare’s® Revox 7™, Revision Skincare® Revox Line Relaxer™, Revision Skincare’s® Hydrating Serum, Revision Skincare® D.E.J. Face Cream®, Revision Skincare® D.E.J. Night Face Cream®, Revision Skincare® D.E.J. Eye Cream®, Revision Skincare® Youthful Lip Replenisher®, Revision Skincare® D.E.J. Daily Boosting Serum®, Neostrata’s® Cellular Restoration, and Elta MD’s® PM Therapy Facial Moisturizer. Each contains a blend of peptides to address the signs of aging for a more youthful complexion and healthier skin barrier.
With a plethora of peptide-based products available at Advanced Skin Therapeutics, it’s easy to incorporate these mighty molecules into your skincare routine. Just remember to choose the right peptide products to match your skincare goals and be patient as they work their magic over time.
Shop our online store or stop in to chat with one of our skincare experts about the right peptide products to address your specific skin concerns.