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Anti-aging creams are predominantly moisturiser-based cosmeceutical skin care products marketed with the promise of making the consumer look younger by reducing, masking or preventing signs of skin aging.
These signs are laxity (sagging), rhytids (wrinkles), and photoaging, which includes erythema (redness), dyspigmentation (brown discolorations), solar elastosis (yellowing), keratoses (abnormal growths), and poor texture. Anti-aging creams may also focus on specific causes of skin aging, such as exposure to the sun.
Despite great demand, many anti-aging products and treatments have not been proven to give lasting or major positive effects. One study found that the best performing creams reduced wrinkles by less than 10% over 12 weeks, which is not noticeable to the human eye. Another study found that cheap moisturisers were as effective as high-priced anti-wrinkle creams. However, recent studies at Manchester University showed that some ingredients have an effect.
Traditionally, anti-aging creams have been marketed towards women, but products specifically targeting men are increasingly common.
Anti-aging creams may include conventional moisturising ingredients. They also usually contain specific anti-aging ingredients, such as:
Traditional moisturisers or sunscreens may provide many of the same benefits as some anti-aging creams.
Facial toning, either by hand, hands-free devices or through electrostimulation of the facial muscles, is thought by some to reduce wrinkles.
Mechanical exfoliation is an alternative to chemical peels using ingredients such as crushed apricot kernels, salt, sponges or brushes.
Advertising sometimes presents anti-aging creams as an alternative to plastic surgery and botox injections, which may be more costly and invasive treatments.
Anti-aging and wrinkle creams are criticised by some for being expensive, unnatural, and not clinically proven to work.
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