While I’ve never had serious reasons for using age-reversing products, I’ve always been told that it’s never too soon to add anti-aging treatments to my regimen. It’s like my mom always said, “prevention is better than cure.”
The best thing is that getting started on your anti-aging goals isn’t as difficult as it’s made out to be. All you need is to focus on UV protection, work on shoring up your moisture barrier, try not to disturb your acid mantle, and exfoliate occasionally to encourage collagen production. And the Estée Lauder Perfectionist Pro Rapid Firm + Lift Treatment promises naturally youthful and lifted skin in a convenient pump bottle with the help of lactic acid and a skin-restoring compound called acetyl hexapeptide-8.
The Estée Lauder Perfectionist Pro Rapid Firm + Lift Treatment promises naturally youthful and lifted skin in a convenient pump bottle.
Lactic acid is one of the gentler forms of alpha hydroxy acid and works by increasing fibroblast activity to boost collagen production to help skin stay firmer. Lactic acid’s larger molecules work more on the surface level of skin, which makes it ideal for sensitive skin. The choice of this AHA for this serum over, say, mandelic or glycolic acid is a good one, as it makes it compatible for a wider range of skin types. I reached out to Estée Lauder’s Consumer Care Team for an exact percentage of the Firm + Lift Treatment’s lactic acid content, but was informed that the brand considered that to be proprietary information.
Acetyl hexapeptide-8 is a synthetically-derived water-binding peptide widely used in skin care. It’s often marked prominently on the products that it’s featured in, due to its purported ability to dramatically reverse the signs of aging in the same way that an injectable like Botox would, as it is derived from a protein found in Botox. While it doesn’t correct lines and wrinkles to the same degree as botulinum toxin, it can yield promising results if formulated properly. Contrary to most marketing claims, acetyl hexapeptide-8 does not penetrate deep enough into the skin to affect real change in the layers where wrinkle formation originates. Rather, it works on the surface levels, like lactic acid, to improve hydration and stimulate collagen, and targets muscle movement receptors to smooth wrinkles to a certain degree.
Also featured in this 1.7oz. silver bottle are squalane, sodium hyaluronate, glycerin, and a whole host of fruit and plant extracts to hydrate, nourish, and brighten. Mango seed butter for instance, is a rich, nourishing plant butter, full of fatty acids and antioxidants that make it a great choice for inclusion in a product that targets aging skin. And algae extract is rich in minerals and amino acids that moisturize, soothe, protect collagen, and increase cell turnover.
I like the way Estée Lauder Perfectionist Pro Rapid Firm + Lift Treatment is packaged. It’s sleek, dispenses neatly, and is protected from sunlight by the opaque silver bottle. The contents are an opalescent cream color that glides onto skin when applied, thanks to the dimethicone in the formula, and absorbs very quickly without a tacky finish. It plays well with products layered under or over it.
Directions are to use it day and night after cleansing and applying toner, then follow with eye cream and moisturizer. I was a little worried about the recommended frequency of use since I have sensitive skin and easily overexfoliate, but my experience with this serum was pleasant and free from irritation.
After about a week of dedicated use, I noticed that my skin looked a lot smoother and had a bit of bounce to it. Some of my hyperpigmentation was less noticeable as well. Unfortunately, this serum didn’t quite deliver on the promise of hydration for my dry skin, and I found myself having to layer on an extra moisturizing serum every time I used this. That’s not to say that it’s a complete write-off. It’s a nice way to get some exfoliation in without having to think too hard about it. I really enjoyed waking up to the surprise of visibly smoother skin from a routine free of wait times, special steps, or application on alternating days.
The Estée Lauder Perfectionist Pro Rapid Firm + Lift Treatment is recommended for all skin types, and while that seems to be true, it’s important for anyone with skin on the drier side to plan to bolster it with a product specifically designed to impart moisture.