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Peptides have been right next to antioxidants and retinoids as potent anti-aging ingredients. While some were quick to give peptide skincare products a try, others chose to wait it out assuming it was all hype. As you can see, peptides aren’t going anywhere. In fact, new peptide serums and peptide creams are cropping up almost every month. To that end, I’ve rounded up the best peptide skincare products to try below.
In case you’ve missed our guide to skincare peptides, here are a few quick facts. Peptides are actually short chains of amino acids used in skincare mainly for targeting signs of aging like wrinkles. There are four different types of peptides: signal peptides, copper peptides, neurotransmitter-inhibiting peptides, and enzyme-inhibiting peptides. Peptides help stimulate collagen production, improve skin health, smooth the appearance of wrinkles, and reduce hyperpigmentation.
In your skincare products, peptides don’t show up as peptides or signal peptides on the ingredient list. They show up as their official name such as tripeptide-1 or if that certain peptide is a trademark, it may show up as the trade name such as Argireline. As you can see, if you don’t know your way around peptides, it’s not that easy to choose the right product or understand what to expect from it. But no worries, that’s what I’m here for.
The Best Peptide Skincare Products
From creams to serums, find below the best peptide skincare products.
1. Peter Thomas Roth Peptide 21 Wrinkle Resist Serum
This is one of the most potent peptide serums you can get your hands on! It’s an absolute gem to effectively treat and prevent wrinkles and fine lines. The light serum is made with polyglutamic acid, hyaluronic acid, and squalane to hydrate and plump the skin.
More importantly, it contains both signal peptides (matrixyl) and neuropeptides (acetyl hexapeptide). The peptide serum also contains the antioxidant vitamin C to protect the skin against free radical damage and help boost radiance. Overall, this is one of the best peptide serums to tackle wrinkles, fine lines, and dehydration lines.
Key Ingredients: Signal peptides, neuropeptides, vitamin C
Key Benefits: Hydrates, encourages collagen production, smoothes fine lines
Size: 1 oz/30 ml
2. Dr. Brandt Skincare Do Not Age With Dr. Brandt Triple Peptide Eye Cream
This is a super replenishing peptide eye cream. It’s made with both signal peptides and neuropeptides. It has an emollient base made with shea butter as well as barrier-restoring ceramides to moisturize around the eyes.
The eye cream also contains vitamin C and caffeine to brighten the eye area, reduce the look of dark circles, and diminish fine lines. If you’re into peptides for crow’s feet and wrinkles around the eyes, this peptide eye cream will keep your under-eye area smooth, replenished, and radiant.
Key Ingredients: Neuropeptide, signal peptide, caffeine, vitamin C
Key Benefits: Softens under-eye wrinkles, minimizes the appearance of dark circles
Size: 0.5 oz/15 ml
3. HydroPeptide Face Lift Advanced Ultra-Light Moisturizer
This one is a daily peptide moisturizer for aging skin. So it’d be more appropriate for 30+ skin that’s getting slower in producing collagen. The lightweight peptide cream is made with hydrating hyaluronic acid and vitamin B5.
It contains several antioxidants, including vitamin C and vitamin E, to guard the skin against free radicals. It’s brimming with neuropeptides and signal peptides too. The moisturizer replenishes the skin and stimulates healthy collagen production for firmer skin.
Key Ingredients: Signal peptides, neuropeptides, vitamin C derivatives
Key Benefits: Moisturizes, plumps skin, softens fine lines
Size: 1 oz/30 ml
4. StriVectin Peptight Tightening & Brightening Face Serum
This one contains a blend of skin-brightening ingredients as well as peptides. That way, it works double duty and targets multiple skin concerns. It’s formulated with niacinamide and Kakadu plum, which is rich in vitamin C, to reduce hyperpigmentation.
It nudges the skin into producing collagen with the help of skin peptides. The serum is an overall great multi-tasker and is a potent addition to a preventative as well as an anti-aging skincare routine.
Key Ingredients: Signal peptides, niacinamide, Kakadu plum extract
Key Benefits: Brightens skin, evens skin tone, hydrates
Size: 1.7 oz/50 ml
Good To Know: Vegan
5. Paula’s Choice Pro-Collagen Multi-Peptide Booster
An amazingly practical product to get started on peptides is this one! This skincare booster contains several signal peptides to regulate collagen production. And it has amino acids to promote healthier and more resilient skin.
It’s packed with humectants to instantly plump up the skin and visibly reduce the look of lines and wrinkles. Peptides are skin-friendly. So feel free to use the booster with your favorite serum or cream to increase its anti-aging properties.
Key Ingredients: Signal peptides, amino acids
Key Benefits: Boosts hydration, minimizes wrinkles
Size: 0.67 oz/20 ml
Good To Know: Vegan, cruelty-free, fragrance-free
6. Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Moisturizer
This is an incredible daily anti-aging moisturizer that will fit into any skincare routine and work for any skin type! Its thicker consistency melts instantly with the heat of your fingers and disappears into the skin, leaving it looking radiant and plump.
In addition to peptides, it has plant-derived epidermal growth factors to boost youthful skin and maintain a healthy skin barrier. Plus, it has amino acids to keep dryness at bay and promote bouncy, firm skin. It’s vegan and fragrance-free and one of the best peptide moisturizers no matter your skin type.
Key Ingredients: Signal peptides, growth factors
Key Benefits: Locks moisture in, improves skin texture, minimizes lines
Size: 1.69 oz/50 ml
Good To Know: Cruelty-free, vegan, fragrance-free, silicone-free
7. The Ordinary Multi-Peptide + HA Serum
For anti-aging products, the price point is usually up there. As always, The Ordinary anti-aging products are an exciting exception. This lightweight serum utilizes a blend of peptides to tackle various signs of aging. It packs signal peptides as well as Argireline to reduce the appearance of expression lines and wrinkles.
And it delivers the peptide blend into the skin along with hyaluronic acid for instant skin-plumping effects too. The gentle formula works for all skin types and may in fact be the most affordable peptide serum out there.
Key Ingredients: Signal peptides, neuropeptides
Key Benefits: Softens fine lines, plumps skin
Size: 1 oz/30 ml
Good To Know: Gluten-free, cruelty-free, vegan
8. The Inkey List Collagen Booster Firming Peptide Serum
And speaking of affordable peptide products, this is another budget-friendly peptide serum that hydrates the skin and works like a skin-tightening face serum. It makes the skin appear firmer and lifted. It’s made with Matrixyl, the famous signal peptide that boosts collagen.
And its base is super lightweight and incredibly hydrating all thanks to glycerin and hyaluronic acid. It absorbs fast and works instantly to make the skin look plumper and smoother.
Key Ingredients: Signal peptides, hyaluronic acid
Key Benefits: Hydrates, encourages collagen production
Size: 1 oz/30 ml
Good To Know: Cruelty-free
9. Estee Lauder Resilience Multi-Effect Tri-Peptide Face and Neck Creme
This is a daily peptide moisturizer for your face and for your neck and comes with SPF 15! It’s an amazing option if you have mature skin, aging skin, and prominent wrinkles and really looking for something with instant benefits. It’s so satisfyingly moisturizing and so nourishing with several antioxidant-rich botanicals. And of course, it packs Argireline for instantly smooth, youthful-looking skin.
Besides, it has vitamins C, and E to protect the skin against free radicals. The peptide-rich formula leaves the skin looking dewy and fresh and is an absolute favorite of mine to illuminate dull skin. You can also try the night cream with the same formula to improve the look of sagging skin.
Key Ingredients: Argireline, vitamin C, vitamin E
Key Benefits: Maximizes moisture, softens surface wrinkles
Size: 1.7 oz/50 ml
So these are the best peptide skincare products that work. Paula’s Choice Pro-Collagen Multi-Peptide Booster is the most convenient option as it works as a face serum and can also be mixed with a moisturizer. If you want a more potent peptide serum for anti-aging, you can’t go wrong with Peter Thomas Roth Peptide 21 Wrinkle Resist Serum. It combines different types of peptides in one single formula and also has antioxidants to address signs of aging in all possible ways.
If you haven’t found what you’re looking for here but want to know what to keep in mind when choosing a peptide serum or cream, no worries. Here’s your guide!
How To Choose Peptide Skincare Products
Use the Right Peptides
Again, there are four different types of peptides and each of them has unique benefits. In general, signal peptides stimulate collagen production and are better for long-term anti-aging benefits. Copper peptides are more helpful in skin barrier function and reducing inflammation. Neuropeptides have instant benefits like smoothing out wrinkles and instantly reducing their visibility. And enzyme inhibiting peptides are usually helpful in targeting dark spots. You can focus on one or more of these depending on your skin issues.
Look for Other Active Ingredients
Peptides may not always be enough on their own to fight wrinkles. That’s why peptide creams and serums come with additional active ingredients or a combination of different peptides to make them more targeted. This doesn’t reduce the effectiveness of the peptides. On the contrary, it kind of puts things into context. For example, when you’re trying to get rid of dark spots, a serum with signal peptides as well as vitamin C will work way better than an isolated peptide serum.
Choose the Right Product
Peptides come in face creams, serums, eye creams, and even toners. For a product to work best for your unique skin, it needs to easily fit into your routine. For example, if you’re dealing with loss of elasticity and wrinkles, go for peptide serums. Serums are more absorbent and more concentrated and they give results in a relatively short time compared to creams. Similarly, if you’re dealing with dull skin, dehydrated skin, or crepey skin, go for peptide moisturizers, which are usually anti-aging creams, that wrap your skin with skin-plumping ingredients.