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'Face lift in a bottle' products - are they worth the hype?

We look at the products that promise to give you an instant face lift in tandem with your non-surgical treatments

If you’re looking to rejuvenate and freshen up your appearance, non-surgical aesthetic treatments such as dermal fillers, injectables, microneedling, laser facials and skin peels are all worth looking into.

Another option is to invest in state-of-the-art skincare that can yield positive results with regular use over longer periods of time. But what’s your best tactic when you catch yourself looking ‘tired’, saggy and lined and want instant results right now?

Perhaps you’re in-between treatments, your budget doesn’t quite stretch to emergency dermal filler, or you have an event coming up and need to look your best fast.

Social media is currently on fire with references to ‘face lift in a bottle’ type skin products but, do these live up to the hype?  Is it really possible to plump up skin and smooth out wrinkles in minutes with a dab of super-charged serum or a face mask?  

“Skin health is an area that is often overlooked in aesthetics practice, and treatments targeting the superficial layers of the skin can actually help to maintain the results of injectable treatments for much longer,” says EV Expert and Aesthetic Doctor, Dr Vincent Wong,.

“For a quick glow before an event, Definisse Lightening Peel is one of my clients’ favourites,” he shares. "This is a combination of three potent acids – salicylic, pyruvic and retinoids – which resurfaces the skin gently without any downtime or severe peeling.

"Another popular quick-fix product is Calecim Professional Serum – it contains the highest concentration of stem cell-derived growth factors and proteins, which are physiologically balanced to help activate tissue renewal." Dr Wong recommends applying the serum topically for a rejuvenating effect, and says it can also be combined with gentle microneedling (no more than 0.5mm) for enhanced absorption.

“There are some very effective skincare products that you can use for a same-day effect,” says EV Expert and Holistic Skin and Wellbeing Expert Gemma Clare. “For example, SkinBetter Science Interfuse Intensive Treatment Lines contains a no-needle, injectable grade hyaluronic solution that topically ‘fills’ and instantly improves the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It also contains amino acids, peptides and vitamin C to stimulate and support the production of collagen and elastin, for firmer-looking skin.

"Another excellent product is Revision Skincare Revox Line Relaxer which relaxes muscle contractions in a similar way to botulinum toxin. This is a good option to give skin a quick boost between treatments.”  

Ingredients to look out for

  • Argireline is the brand name for acetyl hexapeptide-3. In one study (American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 2013) it was shown to significantly improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by 48.9 per cent.
  • Peptides are amino acids which are the building blocks needed to stimulate the production of certain proteins, including elastin and collagen. Peptides help to firm and tighten the skin.
  • Plant stem cells have powerful, natural antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. They lock in moisture and provide intense hydration.
  • Squalene is an oily substance (a component of sebum) that’s naturally found in our bodies. It helps to keep skin hydrated and youthful-looking. As we get older supplies decrease. Plant-derived squalene helps to lock in moisture.
  • Hyaluronic acid is a clear, slippery fluid that occurs naturally in the body. It moisturises, smoothes and keeps skin plump and firm.

Products to try

Revision Skincare Revox Line Relaxer 

A favourite ‘face lift in a bottle’ and recommended by aesthetic skin doctors, this non-sticky serum is formulated with eight potent peptides and Gamma-Aminobutyric acid (GABA) to visibly smooth fine lines and wrinkles, crow’s feet, nasolabial folds, marionette and vertical lip lines. In clinical studies, 97 per cent of users reported an improvement in expression and under eye lines, and 93 per cent showed a reduction in fine lines and wrinkles – just 15 minutes after application. After eight weeks, trial participants reported lines were reduced by 29 per cent.

Murad Targeted Wrinkle Corrector 

This works like dermal filler to instantly smooth and ‘fill’ lines, creases and wrinkles. It combines highly bio-available hyaluronic acid to hydrate and plump the skin, elasticity boosting hexapeptide and plant-derived squalene to lock in moisture.

Timeless Truth Sheet Masks 

These are designed to adhere tightly to the skin's surface, allowing skin smoothing ingredients to penetrate more deeply. The bio cellulose material was originally developed for medical use (to treat wounds and burns). Apple Stem Cell Collagen Mask reduces wrinkles, improves skin texture, tone and elasticity: it contains apple stem cells which stimulate the skin’s natural collagen and elastin. For an instant plumping, firming effect, try Multi-Peptide Anti-Ageing Bio Cellulose Mask which includes peptides and Vitamin E.

Dr Brandt Needles No More Baggage Eye Depuffing Serum 

This lightweight gel eye cream reduces the appearance of lines, bags and puffiness thanks to a blend of algae, plant extracts and silicates that form an invisible film that tightens and smoothes the skin, plus peptides to enhance elasticity and firmness. In clinical trials, users showed improvement after five minutes.

Environ Focus Care Youth Peptide Enriched Frown Serum 

This is formulated with three key ingredients: argirelene, leuphasyl and vialox. It works like a ‘needle-free’ botulinum toxin by softening and smoothing the appearance of skin around the eyes and forehead while visibly reducing frown lines and wrinkles.

ZO Skin Health Growth Factor Serum 

This serum has a quick-fix, skin freshening and smoothing effect. Formulated with a combination of plant and enzymatically-derived growth factors, it’s clinically proven to reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles. In clinical trials, 93 per cent of users experienced improvements in fine lines and wrinkles, firmness end elasticity after 12 weeks.

ROC Derm Correxio Fill + Treat Serum 

A non-invasive wrinkle filler containing three forms of hyaluronic acid. Originally developed by dermatologists and plastic surgeons, it’s been clinically shown to plump and fill fine lines in minutes (in 97 per cent of participants).

Chantecaille Bio Lifting Mask+ 

This best-selling mask contains plant stem cells, four peptides and tightening, lifting agents (derived from algae and natural sugars). Works in 10-15 minutes to plump, hydrate and smooth the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

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