The ingredient world is awash in powerful anti-aging ingredients from palmitoyl pentapeptide (AKA Matrixyl 3000) to acetyl tetrapeptide-9, but copper complex peptide stands out as one that really works—and one you should incorporate into your regimen stat if you want to keep skin looking supple and healthy well into your 40s, 50s, and beyond. It’s a powerful antioxidant that boosts collagen and elastin production, helps to treat hyperpigmentation, and even helps heal wounds (1).
A naturally-occurring compound found in trace amounts in the body, this molecule is also produced in lab settings by linking copper with amino acids (2). There are several different copper peptides used in skincare, but GHK-Cu is the most popular because of its impressive list of benefits for the skin.
It stimulates the production of collagen proteins, which plumps up the skin to reduce fine lines and wrinkles (3). It also helps tighten the skin by boosting elastin proteins, resulting in firmer and more youthful-looking skin (4).
In addition, it promotes hyaluronic acid production and encourages cell turnover. And its antioxidant properties help to fight free radicals, which can damage the skin (5).
It also has the ability to help prevent and correct hyperpigmentation, which can occur due to sun exposure, medications or other types of skin irritation (6). This happens when the melanin production process is disrupted by free radicals and the pigmentation is not able to properly settle in the epidermis, leaving uneven color (1).