You probably know that collagen and elastin are essential for firm, youthful skin, but did you know copper is also said to help stimulate these important skin cells? That’s the main reason why this particular beauty ingredient is often referred to as “a face-lift in a bottle.”
You’ll find copper peptides in everything from serums to moisturizers and even eye creams. They typically work best for people who want to smooth fine lines and wrinkles, even out skin tone, and improve their overall complexion. They may even boost hair growth and thickness.
According to a recent research review, copper peptides increase skin density and tighten sagging skin by stimulating fibroblast cells to produce more collagen and elastin proteins, and by helping skin generate glycosaminoglycans—like hyaluronic acid—that are essential for soft, supple, plump skin. They may also inhibit UV-induced oxidative damage, like sunburn and hyperpigmentation.
Because of their versatility, dermatologists recommend using copper peptides for anyone who wants to enhance their complexion and reduce signs of aging, including dark spots and enlarged pores. The key to achieving results is applying the right amount, twice a day. “Apply enough of the product to just barely cover your face, neck and decollete,” says Kaka. “Avoid the entire orbital area if you’re using this around your eyes.”
Unless otherwise noted, these products contain GHK-Cu Copper Peptide Amino Complex, a powerful, time-release formula that provides more visible results than single-peptide face creams. Avoid applying it with vitamin C serums or retinol products, as copper can oxidize them. Instead, use it in combination with a barrier-protecting moisturizer in the morning and evening.