The Ordinary Multi-Peptide Serum for Hair Density

Deciem’s recently launched hair care from The Ordinary, Multi-Peptide Serum for Hair Density, replaces Deciem’s discontinued Stemm product (which I also used likely about 2 years ago now). This is a concentrated serum that claims to make hair look thicker, denser, healthier and fuller. This is more of a first impression post (this product has not been on the market long enough for anyone to see results of the claims). I wanted to post some before photos of my hair and invite you to follow/check back, I expect in about 3 to 6 months, when I hope to see some results.

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Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Propanediol, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Caffeine, Biotinoyl Tripeptide-1, Acetyl Tetrapeptide-3, Larix Europaea Wood Extract, Pisum Sativum Extract, Scutellaria Baicalensis Root Extract, Triticum Vulgare Germ Extract, Glycine Soja Germ Extract, Trifolium Pratense Flower Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Apigenin, Oleanolic Acid, Arginine, Glycine, Calcium Gluconate, Zinc Chloride, Lactic Acid, Gluconolactone, Dextran, Maltodextrin, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Xanthan gum, Pentylene Glycol, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Polysorbate 20, PPG-26-Buteth-26, PEG-40, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate, Sodium Metabisulfite, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin

The serum is thin and slightly yellow. It contains 1% caffeine by weight, and with a quick search I found an article citing the Journal of Dermatology that says “topical treatment with caffeine resulted in the increase in average growth of hair follicles by around 46%. It also extended its life cycle by 33%” and an article saying “hair products that contain caffeine are not able to reach the hair follicle and therefore can’t promote growth” though this was from a hair clinic. This contains the complexes Redensyl, Procapil, Capixyl, Baicapil and AnaGain. Redensyl is a complex that apparently gives better results than hair transplantation in 84 days with visible hair growth. Procapil apparently strengthens hair and prevents hair loss. Capixyl is a peptide from the extract of red clover that reduces the production of dihydrotestosterone (DHT) that causes thinning of the hair follicles which causes hair loss. Baicapil is an active of three plants that stimulates hair growth, increases hair density and reduces hair loss. AnaGain apparently reactivates hair growth, contributing to thicker, fuller hair. Deciem says that the above technologies make up 21.15% concentration by weight. Hydrogenated castor oil is toward the end of the ingredient list.

The ingredients sound promising, and I’m looking forward to seeing if this product works. For reference, I’m 37 years of age, my hair is fine (but I have a lot of it), I have some graying, I get my hair colored about twice a year and I have had thinning hair likely for a couple years now, more toward the front and sides of my head. I’m using the Multi-Peptide Serum on my eyebrows as well, as they are thinning and some hair follicles are likely dead due to over-tweezing in my early 20s.

I’ve used The Ordinary hair serum for about 4 days now. Putting a drop on my fingers, it has a slightly oily feeling for a few seconds, then a bit sticky for a few seconds and absorbs quite quickly into the skin. There is not really a smell to the serum.

Directions say to apply a few drops to clean, dry scalp ideally at bedtime and massage into scalp. This is a leave-on treatment. The first couple uses I put two drops toward the front of my hair and one drop on each side of my head (edges of the hair) and massaged into the scalp. This left a bit of an oily look and feel to the hair that lasted about an hour until it absorbed and/or dried, so using before bedtime is ideal. I also tried putting a couple drops on my fingers then massaging into the scalp that way, but I’m not sure that applied product evenly to all areas. In the morning, my hair looked and felt normal with no greasy feeling or residue.

Before photos:

Follow this space for after photos in a few months.

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Abnomaly Petrowhat Review

Abnomaly Petrowhat is Deciem’s recently launched lip and skin ointment that can be applied to lips and dry areas of the skin and claims to hydrate, protect and repair dry skin from the first use. This is not a lip gloss.

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Ingredients: Squalane, Aqua (Water), Glycerin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Sucrose Laurate, Sucrose Stearate, Sodium PCA, Sodium Lactate, Arginine, Adansonia Digitata Seed Oil, PCA, Glycine, Alanine, Serine, Valine, Isoleucine, Proline, Threonine, Histidine, Phenylalanine, Aspartic Acid, Isochrysis Galbana Extract, Tocopherol, Aroma (Natural Flavour).

The first ingredient is squalane, an emollient oil that hydrates and prevents hydration loss. Sucrose laurate and sucrose stearate are also emollients. This lip treatment contains amino acids which can hydrate, repair and act as antioxidants. Adansonia digitata seed oil is another name for baobab oil, containing fatty acids and vitamins which moisturizes and has a silky feeling.

I bought the coconut milk flavor that reminds me of the beach. It has a mild coconut scent and flavor and is not sweet tasting. The scent is stronger than the taste. The ointment comes in a metal tube, which is problematic; once the seal is pierced, a lot of product rushes out of the tube.

I’ve used this balm for a couple weeks now, about three times a day. On initial application to the lips it has an initial wet silky feeling, not particularly oily, and somewhat shiny. This silky feeling and shine lasted a few minutes as it absorbed into the skin. Once absorbed, about 15 or 20 minutes later, the lips had quite a dry feeling with almost peeling skin.  This product actually made my lips dry. A lip treatment I like much more is Quench.

I get dry patches of skin on my hands every couple months, almost eczema-like with peeling. I tried Petrowhat on these dry patches as well. On initial application I had immediate relief of the soreness that comes with very dry skin. The ointment absorbed rather quickly, as my hands were quite dry and then left a kind of dry protective layer on my skin that lasted quite a while. So, while this protective layer was nice for my hands, it made my lips really dry. I’m not sure that these dry patches healed faster than with a good hand lotion or something like jojoba oil, but Petrowhat did offer a protective layer on my hands and would likely work well over a lotion or other oil.

I won’t use this on my lips anymore, but will continue to use my tube when I have dry spots on my skin. I will not repurchase.

BioBliss Lash and Brow Booster Serum Review

BioBliss is Prairie Bliss Botanical’s science skincare line. Prairie Bliss is a small Canadian spa and skincare company offering all natural and organic products. I’ve also used the Caffeine Fix Eye Serum and U-Fresh Mist from this company. Since trying B Beauty’s Eye Lash Enhancer and not seeing the results I wanted, I purchased the BioBliss Lash and Brow Booster Serum.

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The Prairie Bliss website lists the ingredients; however, it is a hover list and has a copyright label, so I’m not sure I’d be allowed to list it fully here. Please see their website for a full list of ingredients. I’ll go through the primary ingredients though. The two active ingredients are peptides; myristoyl pentapeptide-17 and myristoyl hexapeptide-16. The pentapeptide enhances keratin production, thus creating lengthening and thickening of the lashes. The hexapeptide also stimulates keratin and makes lashes appear thicker, longer and stronger. Apparently these two peptides, when used together, make lashes grow 25% longer. The other primary ingredient listed is castor oil. Castor oil is anecdotally touted as a hair growth miracle all over the internet. I have doubts about castor oil growing hair; this is the first ingredient in the B Beauty Eyelash Enhancer, which didn’t lengthen my lashes.  However, I have been trying castor oil as a weekly hair oil treatment. The BioBliss Lash Serum includes other oils and vitamins.

This product claims to lengthen and thicken lashes with visible results in 2-4 weeks and best results in 6-8 weeks. This is to be applied on clean eyes at the root of the upper eyelash once daily. This can also be used on eyebrows. As with most eye products, it should be used within 3 months.

I have short eyelashes that seem to grow straight out with no curl. Due to over-tweezing my eyebrows years ago, they are thin and some of the hair follicles are likely dead (I don’t expect anything to revive dead hair follicles).

I applied this to my eyelid at the root of the eyelashes with the small brush and also applied it to the root of my eyebrows in the evening. The product itself is white and has a bit of a medicinal smell. It is not irritating. About three weeks in I started noticing results; my eyelashes were a little longer. I didn’t see any change to my eyebrows though.

I used the product for 8 weeks, and definitely noticed results in the mirror as I applied the product close to the end of the 8 weeks. I thought the eyelashes looked longer, but I didn’t notice any increase in thickness. In the photos the results were harder to see.

 

The top photos are before and the bottom photos are after 8 weeks’ use. Zooming in on the photos, I’m not sure I can see too much difference in the length looking at the front of the eye (a bit surprising since I could definitely tell there was lengthening as I applied the serum towards the end of the review); however, the side profile definitely shows lengthening. I can also see the lashes are a bit thicker especially towards the root. It looks like I might have some graying on some eyelashes and on the after photos the coloring looks better and the lashes look stronger and healthier.

Something I want to note is that the company recommends this be used by 3 months due to bacteria buildup. This is pretty standard with products used around the eyes (mascara, eyeliner, eye drops etc.). The bottle contains 10 mL of product. I used this for 2 months on my upper eyelashes and my eyebrows, and the product was only a quarter gone at the end of the 2 months. The product could easily be half the size.

I’d likely purchase again. I was hoping for more length, but perhaps with the way my eyelashes grow straight out, the length is harder to see. There are definite results with the eyelashes looking healthier and thicker. I was also hoping for at least thickening of the eyebrows as well. I might look for another product with the same active peptides in it; whether a product does what it claims depends on the concentration of actives used. There have been good, proven results with products containing prostaglandins, but I’m a bit reluctant to try these based on side effects.

 

Esho Sculpt Review

Esho Sculpt is a lip treatment created in collaboration with Deciem and Dr. Tijion Esho, cosmetic doctor. Sculpt is a treatment with actives and peptides sold as an alternative to invasive lip fillers. This product claims to encourage lip volume in minutes and over the long term, as well as enhance shape and tone. Sculpt can be used in conjunction with another Esho product, Drench, to encourage hydration, which I have also used.

Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Tripeptide-29, Glycerin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, PEG-12 Glyceryl Dimyristate, Methyl Nicotinate, Stevioside, Isosorbide Disunflowerseedate, Isopropyl Palmitate, Butylene Glycol, Oleic/Linoleic/Linolenic Polyglycerides, Copernicia Cerifera Wax, Aroma (Flavour), Hexapeptide-3, Acetylarginyltryptophyl Diphenylglycine, Disodium Acetyl Glucosamine Phosphate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Adansonia Digitata Fruit Extract, Hibiscus sabdariffa Flower Extract, Commiphora mukul resin extract, Swertia Chirata Extract, Ornithine, Arginine, Glycine, Alanine, Serine, Valine, Isoleucine, Proline, Threonine, Histidine, Aspartic Acid, Phenylalanine, PCA, Sodium PCA, Sodium Lactate, Fructose, Glucose, Maltose, Trehalose, Urea, Allantoin, Levulinic Acid, p-Anisic Acid, Simmondsia Chinensis Leaf Extract, Hydrolyzed Caesalpinia Spinosa Gum, Caesalpinia Spinosa Gum, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Tocopherol, Glycolipids, Phospholipids, Lecithin, Propanediol, Pentylene Glycol, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Decyl Glucoside, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Citric Acid, Potassium Phosphate, Sodium metabisulfite, Sodium sulfite, Sodium Chloride, Ethoxydiglycol, Triethanolamine, Aminomethyl Propanol, Sodium Hydroxide, Alcohol, Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Potassium Sorbate, 1,2-Hexanediol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol. 

Methyl nicotinate produces redness and inflammation of the lips for a short time by causing capillary dilation and an increase in blood circulation. Stevioside is a sweetener from the stevia plant. This product has amino acids and sugars.

This is very sweet-tasting, fruit-flavored (guava I believe) that I think would have been better in mint or at least less sweet, and I don’t particularly want glucose and fructose by my teeth.

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Top photo – before; bottom photo –  3 minutes after application. The photo doesn’t do it justice, but all around the lip got red up to the nose and there was a slight increase in volume.

I’ve been using this for 4 months, morning and evening. On my first use, I put too much on and then made the mistake of touching my tongue to my lips which then went a bit numb. My lips got quite red all along the lip line and up to my nose and my lips felt wind-burned. On subsequent uses I applied less, but the redness still occurred up to my nose and my lips felt wind-burned, albeit less so, and over time my skin got used to it. It was nothing I couldn’t handle and not a deal-breaker. The initial maximum redness, slight volume increase and wind-burned feeling lasted about 5 minutes and the lips went back to normal after about 15 minutes.

Sculpt absorbs quite quickly and then leaves a dryness. Deciem recommends using Drench over Sculpt for “additional hydration,” to me implying that Sculpt would be a bit hydrating, which I didn’t find to be the case.

Top photo – before; bottom photo – results after 4 months

I was actually very surprised by the after photo, as I saw no results in the mirror, but after 4 months there is increased volume, uniform color and nice shape. My results are more subtle than other before and afters that I’ve seen.

It seems the partnership between Deciem and Dr. Esho has ended, and the Esho products will not be continued through Deciem; perhaps Dr. Esho will continue the formula and sell the lip treatments. If so, I would purchase Sculpt again.

 

 

Esho Drench Review

Esho Drench is a lip treatment created in collaboration with Deciem and Dr. Tijion Esho, cosmetic doctor. This product claims to offer lasting water hydration, unlike traditional lip balms that use “mainly waxes and oils to mask dehydration.”

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Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Sclerocarya Birrea Seed Oil, Lactococcus Ferment Lysate, Panthenol, Glycerin, Polyurethane-34, Stevioside, Sodium Hyaluronate, Arginine, Glycine, Alanine, Serine, Valine, Isoleucine, Proline, Threonine, Histidine, Aspartic Acid, Phenylalanine, PCA, Sodium PCA, Sodium Lactate, Fructose, Glucose, Maltose, Trehalose, Xylitol, Xylitylglucoside, Anhydroxylitol, Polyglutamic Acid, Urea, Allantoin, Niacinamide, Rosa Canina Seed Oil, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Plukenetia Volubilis Seed Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis Leaf Extract, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Seed Extract, Hydrolyzed Caesalpinia Spinosa Gum, Caesalpinia Spinosa Gum, Copernicia Cerifera Wax, Propanediol, Pentylene Glycol, Tocopherol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Cetearyl Isononanoate, Cetyl Palmitate, Ceteareth-20, Ceteareth-12, Cetearyl Alcohol, Decyl Glucoside, Glyceryl Stearate, Carbomer, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Ethoxydiglycol, Citric Acid, Triethanolamine, Aminomethyl Propanol, Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium metabisulfite, Sodium sulfite, Sodium Chloride, Benzoic Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, 1,2-Hexanediol, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, Aroma (Flavour).

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Drench contains a number of oils, amino acids and sugars (I’m not sure I particularly want glucose and fructose by my teeth all day). Stevioside is a sweetener found in the stevia plant. Urea increases moisture on the skin’s surface, but can also be irritating. Acrylates/C10-30 binds to water and oil and is used as a stabilizer and increases viscosity. Trisodium ethylenediamine disuccinate improves the efficacy of preservatives and antioxidants. This uses phenoxyethanol as the preservative.

I’ve been using Drench for a bit over 3 months, 2 to 3 times a day. I’ve also been using Sculpt from Esho, a product that claims to encourage lip volume.

Drench is not an oily product, but a thick liquid treatment. It has a strong fruity, guava flavor (many people don’t like the flavor); I think it would be better in mint. It goes on smoothly and absorbs into the skin quite quickly, but leaves a bit of dry stickiness behind. I didn’t find this hydrating at all. While it didn’t make my lips worse than normal, they didn’t feel moisturized and I may as well not have had any product on. I ended up putting on another lip treatment, Quench, over the Drench for the last few days, and my lips felt hydrated and protected – Quench likely did the work though.

While the company seems to imply a lip treatment of waxes and oils only masks dehydration, oils can be very moisturizing and healing and waxes (like beeswax) can be conditioning and provide a protective barrier.

Esho Drench will not be a repurchase for me, and I’ll be sticking with my Quench from Your Best Face Skincare.