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Peptides are a popular skincare ingredient that can be found in many anti-aging products, including moisturizers, serums, and eye creams. Peptides are short chains of amino acids, which are the building blocks of proteins. Studies have found that peptides in skincare formulations can help improve the appearance of aging skin.1,2 When used consistently as part of a well-rounded skincare routine, CeraVe’s peptide creams can help to minimize the look of fine lines and wrinkles, improve the appearance of fatigued skin, and promote firmer, smoother-looking skin.

Important Things To Know About Peptides for Skin

  • Peptides are small fragments of proteins that can be found in every tissue and cell of the human body. They’re made up of short chains of amino acids (the main building blocks of proteins) and are linked by a chemical bond called a peptide bond.

    Proteins and peptides are very similar but the primary difference between them is their size: Peptides are smaller (generally consisting of two to 2 to 50 amino acids) and proteins are larger (with 50 or more amino acids). When naturally found in the skin, peptides may be components of important molecules like collagen and elastin—two proteins that are essential for maintaining firm, supple, and youthful-looking skin.

  • Peptides are a crucial part of the natural makeup of your skin. These short chains of amino acids help your body create structural proteins (such as collagen and elastin) that make your skin flexible, elastic, and resilient. As you age, your body gradually produces less of these proteins, which can weaken the skin and contribute to fine lines and wrinkles, sagging, and loss of firmness. In fact, research shows that adults lose about 1% of collagen and elastin each year.3

    Besides supporting youthful-looking skin, studies have also found that peptides may play an important role in maintaining a healthy skin barrier (the protective outermost layer of your skin).4 

  • Peptides are a popular skincare ingredient, especially in anti-aging moisturizers, serums, and eye creams. Although research is still ongoing, studies have found that formulas including peptides topically may help reduce the appearance of wrinkles.2,5 Including a peptide serum or cream in your skincare routine can also help improve the appearance of fatigued skin and support a smoother, firmer-looking complexion.

  • Peptides can generally be used by all skin types, but this will depend on the specific product you choose. CeraVe’s peptide formulas are suitable for use by all skin types, including dry, oily, normal, combination, and sensitive skin. Our formulas are also developed with dermatologists, fragrance-free, allergy-tested, and gentle on your skin. If you are unsure how best to incorporate peptides into your skincare routine, seek the advice of a board-certified dermatologist.

  • Incorporating peptides into your skincare routine is as simple as choosing a gentle product that’s suitable for your skin type and skin concerns. One peptide cream to consider is CeraVe Skin Renewing Night Cream—a hydrating and rejuvenating night cream formulated with peptides, hyaluronic acid, and ceramides. This fragrance-free night cream helps improve the appearance of fatigued skin, locks in skin’s moisture, and helps restore your skin’s protective barrier overnight.

    You can also pair our Skin Renewing Night Cream with CeraVe Skin Renewing Eye Cream, our anti-aging peptide eye cream. This lightweight yet deeply hydrating formula for tired eyes features a peptide complex, along with caffeine, ceramides, and niacinamide. With continued use, this peptide eye cream can help reduce the appearance of fine lines, crow’s feet wrinkles, under-eye puffiness, and dark circles.

  • Peptides and hyaluronic acid can make an ideal skincare pairing when used together as part of a consistent skincare routine. Hyaluronic acid is a humectant moisturizer that can help boost your skin’s hydration and support supple, plump-looking skin. Similar to peptides, hyaluronic acid is also a popular ingredient in anti-aging serums, moisturizers, and eye creams.

    According to studies, combining these two ingredients in your skincare routine may have a synergistic effect, especially if your goal is to improve the look of skin texture, skin tone, fine lines, and wrinkles.6

  • Peptides and retinol are two of the most well-known ingredients in anti-aging skincare products. They both offer distinct benefits for aging skin, which means that one isn’t necessarily better than the other. Retinol is a derivative of vitamin A that helps promote your skin’s exfoliation process—this can help refine the skin’s overall tone and texture. Formulas with peptides, on the other hand, may help hydrate and promote firm, plump-looking skin.

    Choosing the right ingredient for your anti-aging routine will depend on your skin type, skincare goals, and your skin’s sensitivity. Some people with sensitive skin may find that peptide creams and serums are gentler on their skin than retinol products, which may cause redness or irritation (especially when you first start using them). When in doubt, consult a board-certified dermatologist for advice.

  • Topical peptides in skincare products are generally well-tolerated by most skin types. However, peptide products can vary depending on the formulation. We recommend choosing a gentle formula that’s fragrance-free, allergy-tested, and developed with dermatologists, like our Skin Renewing Night Cream and Skin Renewing Eye Cream.

  • Peptide creams are often touted for their ability to deliver anti-aging skin benefits, such as improving the look of fine lines, wrinkles, and fatigued skin under the eyes. According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), dry skin becomes more common as you age, so it may be beneficial to choose a peptide cream that’s intensely moisturizing—like CeraVe Skin Renewing Night Cream.7

    Our peptide creams are also gentle on your skin, fragrance-free, and developed with dermatologists. They feature other beneficial ingredients for aging skin, such as hyaluronic acid and our three essential ceramides. To find the right products for your anti-aging skincare routine, head to our Skincare Solution Finder.

  • This depends on the product you choose. Always read the product label carefully and apply peptide products per the instructions on the label. CeraVe’s peptide formulas are suitable for daily use as part of a daytime and nighttime skincare routine. Consistency is key when it comes to getting the most out of your skincare routine, so we recommend sticking to a daily anti-aging regimen for best results.

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