A twice-daily topical skin care regimen consisting of a pharmaceutical-grade cleanser and moisturizer was superior to placebo for improving hydration and elasticity and reducing wrinkle size in women with sensitive skin. This is according to findings from a study published in Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology.

White females between the ages of 32 and 72 years old were enrolled in the double-blind study (N=30). The skin care regimen consisted of a moisturizer with glycerin and niacinamide and an exfoliating cleanser with glycerin as its first ingredient. The negative placebo control products were the same moisturizer and cleanser but without the active ingredients, whereas the positive control products were a different moisturizer and gentle cleanser with similar ingredients as the test products and made by the same pharmaceutical company.

For 28 days, participants in group 1 (age, 50.8±2.8 years [range, 32-72 years]; n=15) applied the placebo cleanser and moisturizer to the left side of the face and the test cleanser and moisturizer to the right side of the face twice daily. Participants in group 2 (age, 47.9±2.6 years [range, 32-64 years]; n=15) applied the placebo products to the left side of the face and the positive control products to the right side of the face twice per day. Measures of skin hydration (ie, transepidermal water loss and skin elasticity) were assessed at baseline and at 7 days, 14 days, 21 days, and 28 days. Additionally, the researchers measured wrinkle surface, length, and depth at baseline, at 14 days, and at 28 days.


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After 28 days of using the twice-daily test cleanser and moisturizer, participants had significant improvements in wrinkle surface (34.8±4.7%; P <.001), wrinkle length (19.0±3.2%; P <.05), and wrinkle depth (24.3±3.5%; P <.05). The participants also experienced increases in gross elasticity (32.8±6.5%; P <.001), net elasticity (47.3±8.6%; P <.001), and biologic elasticity (50.6±5.1%; P <.001). Conversely, there was a significant decrease in viscoelastic portion by 33.4±4.6% (P <.001) at 28-day follow-up. After 28 days, there was also an increase in skin hydration (42.2±8.5%; P <.01), whereas no change in transepidermal water loss was observed. The products were considered safe, as there were no reports of adverse events.

Limitations of the study include its short follow-up duration, small sample size, and the inclusion of only white females.

One reason the test products were effective was the inclusion of niacinamide, an ingredient which “increases collagen production, an effect that is also relevant to other anti-wrinkle agents, such as all-trans retinoic acid,” the researchers wrote.

Disclosures: The authors reported conflicts of interests with Ego Pharmaceuticals, which produced the test products and sponsored the study.

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Reference

Spada F, Lui AH, Barnes TM. Use of formulations for sensitive skin improves the visible signs of aging, including wrinkle size and elasticity. Clin Cosmet Investig Dermatol. 2019;12:415-425.