I have not been the kindest to my skin in the last quarter century. I do not sleep as much as I should. I am a beach bum in summer, not to mention the countless hours I spend hiking & jogging under the scorching sun. I indulge in the occasional comfort foods. I drink. I stress. It is all part of life though, it is for all of us; so starting anti-aging early was important to me. It is always easier to take preventative measures than reverse damage later on.
However, I have had some growing pains while trying to find an anti-aging skincare regimen that works for me. Many products have been too irritating or drying on my dehydrated, dry skin. As I searched for alternatives, peptides seemed like a great addition to exfoliants & acids. So what better to try than this new peptide-laden beauty on the market?
Ciracle is a South Korean cosmetic brand that is the little sister of the popular Cosrx. The similarities to Cosrx are highlighted by the short ingredient lists & natural componets. The main difference I have noticed is I am personally more impressed with Ciracle products as a whole & their products are focused on anti-aging. The brand has many organically certified products & opposes animal testing [If a cosmetic brand sells to China though, products are required to have undergone animal testing]. The brand also has a great reputation for interacting with their consumer base & listening to their desires, though I wish they made more sustainability efforts.
This product is an anti-aging essence that contains ingredients to communicate with skin cells instead of exfoliating cells. It is suited for all skin types, but may be a great anti-aging alternative for skin types that are sensitive to acid exfoliants & retinal.
I use this in both AM & PM routines. I would apply this after toner & actives if I happen to be using any in my routine. This is a non-exfoliating product so it can be used everyday.
It is a thick, rich essence that is clear with a golden hue. The product glides one easily, but since the product is so thick I have to use more product that I typically have with other essences.
This product does contain artificial fragrance, but it is entirely odorless to me. There seems to be no perfume so I assume the added fragrance acts more like a neutralizer to the other ingredients that might have a natural smell… Like a few Cosrx products could use some added fragrance to cover up some stinky funkiness. So, well done, Ciracle!
I really dislike products that come in dropper packaging. This is my biggest complaint about the product, but even this is not a major issue since it seems like a well designed, sturdy dropper. The glass bottle is transparent enough that you can see the amount of remaining product, but it is also dark colored to theoretically assist in stabilizing the product formula.
My major qualm with dropper packaging is I always have issues with the dropper itself, the rubber dispensing end where you apply pressure always seems to leak & make the outside packaging sticky. I have had the most mild issues with this dropper packaging of all that I have used so that does count for something, even if it is menial.
I am not ready to put a ring on this product & call it my Holy Grail yet… But I kinda love this product!
This is meant to be an anti-aging product, but it doesn’t act like most I have encountered. I have done everything from Vitamin C to Tretinoin. All have wonderful benefits, but some unfortunate side effects that can be slightly drying & irritating.
This product does the exact opposite, it actually hydrates my skin. This may seem like an unfair comparison since Retinal & Vitamin C can be exfoliators, but I would argue peptides have comparable anti-aging benefits & a great alternative for sensitive skin types that can’t handle exfoliating anti-aging ingredients.
I gush over the ingredient list below, but the only real issue with the ingredient list is it does contain one form of paraben depending on your stance with this preservative. I am perfectly fine with it, but I know many who are not.
There are 2 mild acne triggers & 1 low irritant according to CosDNA.
Water, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, Butylene Glycol, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Hydrolyzed Hibiscus Esculentus Extract, Dextrin, Palmitoyl Tripeptide-1, Alcohol, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Sodium Hyaluronate, Coceth-7, PPG-1-PEG-9 Lauryl Glycol Ether, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Carbomer, Triethanolamine, Beta-Glucan, Collagen, Adenosine, Glycerin, Hydrolyzed Conalbumin, Copper Tripeptide-1, rh-Oligopeptide-1, Pentylene Glycol, Lecithin, Sodium Phosphate, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Fragrance
I believe this is one of the most underrated ingredients in anti-aging skincare. This ingredient has the genetic makeup that are part of proteins that form amino acids. You will often see omni-, di-, or tri- prefixes in front peptides that refer to the number of amino acids encompassed in the ingredient. They are cell communicators, but they also possess different “communication styles” i.e. Hormonal activity, immune activity, etc.
So why does any of this jibberish matter? Wrinkles form when the skin loses elasticity & collagen. Peptides are cell communicators that alert your skin to collagen loss so that your body can produce more collagen. Theoretically when peptides are applied topically, they penetrate your skin without damaging your cells so that your body receives the “More collagen, bro!” message & thus stimulating more collagen production whereever it is applied.
Obviously a lot will depend on the type of peptides used in a product & how it is formulated. Some peptides have great anti-inflammatory benefits, others have been used as antibacterials. The real challenge is having peptides successfully penetrate the skin without breaking down.
Another major obstacle when it comes to any new & exciting skincare item is curbing expectations back to reality. Peptides will not erase a few decades from your face or plump your lips like Kylie Jenner. No serum or cream can take back time, you have to look into alternative options like botox or surgical intervention if you want these types of results. I think this is a great ingredient & can have great preventative effects, but it will not eliminate all the damage that is already done.
Acetyl Hexapeptide-8 – Relax facial muscles
Palmitoyl Tripeptide-1 – Considered extremely similar to collagen structure so theoretically great for stimulating collagen production & skin healing
Copper Tripeptide-1 – The least sexy peptide of the bunch, it still an antioidant though it may not penetrate the skin as well as other peptides
Potent antioxidant, also rich it vitamins C & E to improve appearance & texture of skin
This is a form of Hyaluronic Acid, which is water-binding agent that attracts moisture to the skin & also prevents moisture loss
Natural energy source within cells that has anti-inflammatory benefits & potentially cell regeneration
Product Price: $32.00 / 1oz
This product is available at Jolse for $27 & free international shipping, but the average price is $32.00 for this product on other sites. I do love how widely available this product is since either in the USA or Austria, I could get this in about two weeks. Also if you can’t tell, I really like this product & I WANT IT so I am glad I would never have a problem with availability.
It definitely is not the cheapest anti-aging product around & it is not necessary to any standard beauty routine a.k.a. This is not something I would purchase if I were back in undergrad & living on a ramen budget. However, this is one of the best peptide products I have seen & I think this is an extremely reasonably priced anti-aging product. The product has longevity, I project it would take me 5-6 months to finish a bottle of this essence.
Rating: 4 / 5
This has Holy Grail potential, but I have reservations. While not a dealbreaker, I really prefer my skincare not to have alcohol. I consider this product fairly expensive for what it is as well & it makes me hesitant to consider repurchasing. I enjoyed using this product & I will miss it when it is gone, it does have a nice ingredient list & it was nice to have a gentle anti-aging step in my routine.