Effects of a cosmetic ‘anti-ageing’ product improves photoaged skin

Dermatological Sciences Research Group, School of Translational Medicine, Faculty of Medical and Human Sciences, The University of Manchester, Oxford Road, Manchester, UK.
British Journal of Dermatology (Impact Factor: 4.28). 05/2009; 161(2):419-26. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2133.2009.09216.x
Source: PubMed


Very few over-the-counter cosmetic 'anti-ageing' products have been subjected to a rigorous double-blind, vehicle-controlled trial of efficacy. Previously we have shown that application of a cosmetic 'anti-ageing' product to photoaged skin under occlusion for 12 days can stimulate the deposition of fibrillin-1. This observation infers potential to repair and perhaps clinically improve photoaged skin.
We examined another similar over-the-counter cosmetic 'anti-ageing' product using both the patch test assay and a 6-month double-blind, randomized controlled trial (RCT), with a further 6-month open phase to assess clinical efficacy in photoaged skin.
For the patch test, commercially [corrected] available test product and its vehicle were applied occluded for 12-days to photoaged forearm skin (n = 10) prior to biopsy and immunohistochemical assessment of fibrillin-1; all-transretinoic acid (RA) [corrected] was used as a positive control. Sixty photoaged subjects were recruited to the RCT (test product, n = 30 vs. vehicle, n = 30; once daily for 6-months; face & hands) [corrected] with clinical assessments performed at recruitment and following 1-, 3- & 6-months of use [corrected]. Twenty-eight subjects had skin biopsies (dorsal wrist) at baseline and at 6 months of treatment for immunohistochemical assessment of fibrillin-1 (test product, n = 15; vehicle, n = 13). All subjects [corrected] received test product for a further 6-months. Final clinical assessments were performed at the end of this open period; 27 subjects received test product for 12-months [corrected].
In the 12-day patch test assay, we observed significant immunohistological deposition of fibrillin-1 in skin treated by test product and RA as compared to untreated baseline (P = 0.005 and 0.015 respectively). In the clinical RCT, at 6 months, compared to baseline assessment, 43% of subjects on test product had an improvement in facial wrinkles (P = 0.013), whereas only 22% of subjects using vehicle had clinical improvement (P = ns). Between group comparison of test product and vehicle was non-significant (P = 0.10). After 12 months, there was a significant benefit of test product over that projected for vehicle (70% vs. 33% of subjects improving; combined Wilcoxon rank tests, P = 0.026). There was significant deposition of fibrillin-1 in skin treated for 6 months with test product (mean +/- SE; vehicle, 1.84 +/- 0.23; test product, 2.57 +/- 0.19; P = 0.019).
An over-the-counter cosmetic 'anti-ageing' product demonstrated clear benefit over vehicle in fibrillin-1 deposition over a 6-month trial period. There was a corresponding but non-significant trend towards clinical improvement in facial wrinkles. Clinical improvements in the treated group were increased after a further 6-months of use. This study demonstrates that a cosmetic may improve the appearance of wrinkles and further supports the use of fibrillin-1 as a robust biomarker for repair of photoaged dermis.

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