There are over 7,000 different kinds of peptides hanging out in your body at any given moment, regulating hormones and optimizing organ function. You’ve probably heard of the most popular ones, like collagen peptides (for skin) and sermorelin peptides (for anti-aging), but the truth is that these little proteins are all over the place.
The short chains of amino acids that comprise a peptide are the building blocks of proteins that are found in all cells, from the skin to your muscles. Peptides are highly effective, but also very versatile because they can do just about anything a protein does. This means they’re not one-trick ponies, but multi-taskers that can boost your energy levels, increase muscle mass and more.
In skincare, peptides firm and tighten the skin, soothe it and leave it with a healthy glow. They can also minimize the appearance of large pores, reduce redness and even reduce signs of aging by encouraging your own natural production of collagen and elastin.
The best way to reap the benefits of peptides is with an at-home treatment, like a serum or face cream. Since they break down quickly, they’re not as effective in a facial wash or other products that you rinse off within seconds. Choosing a product that will remain on your skin for prolonged contact is ideal so the peptides can really penetrate the layers and start working. Peptides work best in tandem with other beneficial ingredients like niacinamide, vitamin C and hyaluronic acid. They’re also more efficient if they aren’t used immediately before or after an alpha hydroxy acid.