Review - Ella Baché Collagen+ Peptide Eye Serum
Updated: Dec 31, 2020
Earlier this year I was invited by my regular beauty therapist at Ella Baché West Lindfield to try this new product.
"This multi-benefit and ultra-lightweight eye treatment serum plumps fine lines and wrinkles with a supercharged powerhouse of active ingredients including Peptides and Ceramides. This serum delivers long lasting hydration and illumination while banishing tired, puffy eyes in exchange for an instantly firmer, brighter and plumper eye contour area."
A deeper look at the peptides
Peptides are short sequences of amino acids (typically comprising of 2 to 5 amino acids) that function as cell-signaling molecules (i.e. telling the cells what to do). Certain peptides can target skin cells and specifically stimulate collagen production to repair damage, reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles and make skin looks firmer. Peptide actions are highly specific - meaning that not all peptides are the same. In fact, different peptides will signal cells to behave in different ways. Therefore, it is important to know which "peptides" are contained in your products.
This Ella Baché eye serum contains three different peptides.
palmitoyl tripeptide-1 and palmitoyl tetrapeptide-7: they work in synergy - and this combination is called "Matrixyl 3000"; and
What is Matrixyl / Matrixyl 3000?
To help myself understand the action of Matrixyl, I looked into the evolution of Matrixyl and scientific background.
The first member of the Matrixyl family of peptides is simply called Matrixyl.
"Matrixyl" is arguably the most well-known peptide in the skincare world. Matrixyl is the trade name for palmitoyl pentapeptide-4 (KTTKS being the actual sequence and each of those letters stands for an amino acid: lysine–threonine–threonine–lysine–serine): a 5-amino acid (penta-) peptide linked to a fatty acid (palmitoyl), manufactured by the Spanish cosmetic active ingredient manufacturer Sederma in 2000. The fatty acid attachment enhances penetration of the molecule into deeper layers of the skin.
The KTTKS pentapeptide is a small fragment of type-I collagen, i.e. type-1 collagen naturally gets broken down into smaller fragments, including the KTTKS pentapeptide. The theory goes, the presence of the pentapeptide "tricks" the skin into thinking that the skin's natural collagen has been broken down, and hence stimulates the body to make more collagen. 13 years after Sederma's launch, the collagen production ability of this peptide was finally proven by an independent study*.
The new versions of Matrixyl
Since then, Sederma has launched two more versions Matrixyls... Confusingly, these Matrixyls are completely different peptide sequences.
"Matrixyl 3000", the peptides used in this particular eye serum, consists of two different peptides: palmitoyl tripeptide-1 (GHK: glycine-histidine-lysine) and palmitoyl tetrapeptide-7 (GQPR: glycine-glutamine-proline-arginine).
Similar to the KTTKS pentapeptide, the GHK tripeptide is also a small fragment of type-I collagen; therefore, the same theory in stimulating collagen production applies.
The GQPR tetrapeptide works differently; it is thought to reduce inflammation. Because inflammation is thought to cause collagen degradation, the presence of GQPR tetrapeptide may slow the rate of collagen degradation. In this sense, it works synergistically with the GHK tripeptide above (boosting collagen production).
The manufacturer claims that Matrixyl 3000 is stronger than the original Matrixyl.
Catch? So far, there doesn't seem to be any independent research apart from the manufacturer's own studies to support the efficacy of Matrixyl 3000. However, it seems to be quite widely believed that it is legit - given the success story of the original Matrixyl from the same manufacture and also general consumers' self-reporting of positive experience.
Just to add to the confusion, another peptide "Matrixyl Synthe 6" is a much younger member of the family containing one single molecule palmitoyl tripeptide-38 (KMK). The manufacturer reports that it can boost the production of 6 major components of the skin matrix (collagen I, III, IV, fibronectin, hyaluronic acid and laminin 5) to decrease signs of forehead lines and crow’s feet. Matrixyl Synthe 6 is already widely used in skincare (but is not present in this eye serum).
Dipeptide-2 is a short peptide consisting of only 2 amino acids (VW: Valine-Tryptophan). The same manufacturer claims that dipeptide-2 increases lymphatic circulation (and hence reduces puffy eyes); although to date no independent clinical studies have been identified.
Dipeptide-2 is used in this eye serum.
What about collagen?
The eye serum also contains "hydrolized collagen". "Hydrolized" simply refers to the process of breaking down of bigger collagen molecules into smaller molecules, often in a random fashion. Hydrolized collagen may have a temporary smoothing effect but as opposed to the peptides engineered in the way explained above, it cannot be absorbed into or incorporated into skin.
This eye serum has packed almost as many good ingredients that an eye product can contain. Apart from the peptides, it has a variety of humectants, emollients, fatty acids (from plant oils), antioxidants and most importantly, ceramides and cholesterol (read about my love for ceramides and cholesterol here). The eye serum costs $99 but in my opinion it is well worth it.
Application & results
Initially, I found that this eye cream tends to pill with most of my foundations, some tinted moisturisers and cream eye shadow. It took me a while to work out what makeup products I can layer on this eye serum. Once I have worked this out, I have been using it twice a day.
The eye serum feels thick and creamy - personally I have always used it as an eye cream - and the only eye care product. It gives me an instant tightening and slightly heated sensation that lasts about half a minute. Because of that heated sensation I recommend to start with a smaller amount at the beginning and gradually build up the amount to be used. It is worth mentioning that the applicator is a piece of smooth, cooling metal. The cooling sensation from the metal applicator helps to balance that tightening and heated feeling.
As with most other products, it takes time to see results. There wasn't any observable change in the first two months. By the third month, I can honestly say that I am seeing less fine lines under the eyes. I can also confidently say that my makeup and concealer is creasing a lot less under my eyes - so I truly believe that Matrixyl-3000 is effective. As to the claim that dipeptide can reduce puffiness, I don't have puffy eyes issue so I can't really comment on it based on experience. However, I think that my dark circles are somewhat less obvious, as some days I can go without undereye concealer.
Overall I am very happy with it. This eye serum has given me the best results out of all other eye creams I have used. The only disadvantage is the amount of pilling that I have experienced, but it is something that I am willing to work around because of its effectiveness.
WATER, GLYCERIN, ISOHEXADECANE, BUTYROSPERMUM PARKII OIL, GLYCERYL STEARATE CITRATE, SACCHARIDE ISOMERATE, PULLULAN, ARGANIA SPINOSA KERNEL OIL, CENTELLA ASIATICA EXTRACT, HYDROXYPROPYL METHYLCELLULOSE, SORBITAN STEARATE, SUCROSE COCOATE, ROSEMARINUS OFFICINALIS (ROSEMARY) LEAF EXTRACT, HYDROLYZED COLLAGEN, BRASSICA CAMPESTRIS (RAPESEED) SEED OIL, LECITHIN, SCLEROTIUM GUM, SODIUM LAUROYL LACTYLATE, CETEARYL ALCOHOL, TOCOPHEROL (NATURAL), TOCOPHERYL ACETATE (NATURAL), GLYCYRRHIZA GLABRA (LICORICE) ROOT EXTRACT, ECHINACEA ANGUSTIFOLIA LEAF EXTRACT, ALGAE EXTRACT, POLYGLYCERYL-3 DIISOSTEARATE, CANNABIS SATIVA SEED OIL, CHONDRUS CRISPUS EXTRACT, HESPERIDIN METHYL CHALCONE, PORPHYRIDIUM CRUENTUM EXTRACT, XANTHAN GUM, PALMITOYL TETRAPEPTIDE-7, FUCUS VESICULOSUS (SEAWEED) EXTRACT, HEXYLENE GLYCOL, ALTHAEA OFFICINALIS ROOT EXTRACT, CHRYSIN, DIPEPTIDE-2, N-HYDROXYSUCCINIMIDE, ORYZA SATIVA (RICE) BRAN EXTRACT, SODIUM HYALURONATE, CERAMIDE AP, PALMITOYL TRIPEPTIDE-1,TERMINALIA FERDINANDIANA (KAKADU PLUM) FRUIT EXTRACT, CERAMIDE EOP, DIPROPYLENE GLYCOL, CERAMIDE NP, STEARETH-20, MICA, PHENOXYETHANOL, TITANIUM DIOXIDE, CHOLESTEROL, PHYTOSPHINGOSINE, POLYSORBATE 20, SODIUM ACRYLATES COPOLYMER, ETHANOL, ETHYLHEXYLGLYCERIN, CAPRYLYL GLYCOL, CITRIC ACID, SODIUM CITRATE, TROMETHAMINE, CARBOMER, 1,2 HEXANEDIOL, DISODIUM EDTA, FRAGRANCE
Makeup artist and hair stylist based in Sydney. Founder of the well-known award-winning bridal specialist team Faces Makeup & Hair. Beauty junkie with an obsession for skincare.