Let the buyer beware! In the multi-billion dollar beauty industry, things are not always as they appear. Here are my top examples of dubious marketing and vaporous claims in skin care for the year.
1.Apple stem cells This story is a marketing exec’s dream: Scientists locate an ancient, heritage apple tree on a remote Swiss hillside and discover that its stem cells are the fountain of youth. Proponents claim this plant extract, sold as PhytoCellTec Malus Domestica, can erase wrinkles and increase the life of human skin cells. The truth is, even if they did have benefits, apple stem cells could not survive typical retail shelf life, and stem cells have never been scientifically shown to penetrate the skin anyway.
2. Botox in a jar Some creams claim they work better than dermatologist-administered procedures like Botox, lasers and dermal fillers. This is impossible! Strivectin gets away with it by adding the "?" after "Better than Botox?" My answer to that question is “No!”
3.Misleading Statements ProX by Olay claims that it’s results were comparable to a prescription retinoid at 24 weeks. Although this likely means that it moisturized as well as the prescription product, the long term results on wrinkles would be more meaningful. The study that led to FDA approval of Renova (a prescription anti-wrinkle cream) was 52 weeks, not 24 weeks. Any moisturizer can make skin wrinkles look better temporarily, but it is long term that counts. So stick to your retinoids, and don’t fall prey to this claim.
4. Peptides The theory is that topically applying peptides can trick our skin cells into producing even more collagen. In reality, peptides don’t penetrate the skin — if they did, other peptides such as insulin would already be supplied by creams rather than injections. Products like StriVectin may make the skin feel smooth but they have not been shown to have long-term clinically-significant benefits.
5. Monthly purchase scams Beware of retailers who automatically sign you up for a monthly purchase when you buy their product. Many people on my forum at www.skintypesolutions.com have complained that this happened to them when they bought a product called Dermapril.
6. Home light devices At the University of Miami, I worked with several top dermatologists in a large study on the use of home light devices in the treatment of wrinkles. The study showed that they just do not work for wrinkles (though it turned out they help for acne). Save your money, or opt for professional treatment with Botox, Dysport, or laser treatments.
Remember: if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If you want to know the truth about these issues, visit my Web site to get unbiased opinions about skin care.