What's In It Wednesday: DermaSilk Collagen Gold

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

This was going to just be a product review, but I think it's better suited for a What's In It Wednesday. Today we're going to look at a product I was sent for the purpose of review from a company called DermaSilk. I was sent several products, all with remarkable claims, but the one we'll look at today is called Collagen Gold.



Here is the list of ingredients. The ones in red are ones that are cause for concern in terms of safety.

Ingredients: Aqua, propylene glycol, sclerotium gum, pullulan, ascorbyl glucoside, glycerin, acrylates/C10-30 alkyl acrylate crosspolymer, hydrolyzed silk, aminomethyl propanol, butylene glycol, pentylene glycol, hydroxyphenyl propamidobenzoic acid, sodium hyaluronate, phenoxyethanol, methylparaben, disodium EDTA, diazolidinyl urea, propylparaben, acacia senegal gum, salicylic acid, fragrance, caramel, algae extract, pseudoalteromonas ferment extract, hydrolyzed wheat protein, hydrolyzed soy protein, tripeptide10 citrullilne, tripeptide-1, lecithin, xanthan gum, carbomer, triethanolamine


About half of the ingredients in this product are unsafe or at least should be avoided.  


Propylene Glycol--PG is used in conjunction with other chemical ingredients as a preservative. It is also found in products to make it easier for other added ingredients to penetrate the skin. This ingredient has been shown in studies to aggravate skin conditions such as eczema. This derivitave of mineral oil is considered a petrochemical. There are many different grades of PG: industrial grade is found in anti-freeze. 


 Some will tell you that skin care products with propylene glycol just like anti-freeze. This isn't true--the kind in cosmetics is cosmetics grade. That being said, this can cause contact dermatitis, especially in such a very high concentration. Because of this, I cannot recommend it since the product will not be rinsed thoroughly from the skin after application.


Aminomethyl Propanol--this pH adjuster can be quite irritating. The Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) Expert Panel has recommended this to be safely used at a maximum concentration of 1%.



Methylparaben--this type of paraben is a preservative agent against fungus. A very compelling study 7 years ago in the Journal of Applied Toxicology linked parabens to breast cancer as they may be hormone disruptive and lead to tumor growth. While the jury is still out on paraben safety, I personally find the links too strong and this home has been paraben free for more than 4 years.  

Disodium EDTA--there are many mixed feelings on EDTA ingredients. I tend to err on the side of caution. While there are far more harmful ingredients, more research is needed on EDTAs to answer the looming questions of safety. The biggest concern is the study showing human neurotoxicity. This is cause for concern, as are the possible links to cancer.

Diazolidinyl Urea--a preservative and formaldehyde-releaser derived from animals. Used in embalming. Linked to cancer. Very, very unsafe.

Propylparaben--this type of paraben is a preservative agent against fungus. A study 7 years ago in the Journal of Applied Toxicology linked parabens to breast cancer as they may be hormone disruptive and lead to tumor growth. While the jury is still out on paraben safety, I personally find the links too strong and have been paraben free for 4+ years.


Acacia Senegal Gum--this ingredient is in here because it gives that "lifted", sticky feel. It forms a film because it comes from tree sap and makes it feel like your skin is firmer. Acacia also sounds healthy and natural, doesn't it? Acacia is very harmful. It has been linked to cancer, is highly irritating, and can cause damage to sense organs at very low dosages.



Fragrance--This is a synthetic ingredient which is responsible for a large percentage of allergies in many sufferers. It can be very irritating to certain individuals, especially children and those with respiratory issues, headaches, and other illnesses.


Triethanolamine--Why, oh why, do companies continue to add this? This is one of the most toxic ingredients out there. For more details, check out the Cosmetics Database. It is on so many restricted lists, yet keeps cropping up. The studies show the negative effects even in low doses. It is in this as a pH adjuster, most likely. I typically do not worry if I see this last on the list, but when it is combined with so many other ingredients, I have to say to avoid it if at all possible.


Our Thoughts:

This product comes with so many different claims. The package says that it "prevents premature degradation of collagen in the skin while promoting collagen synthesis." It also says that it'll strengthen the connective tissue, tighten contours, "reverses time's aging effects on your skin" and about 5 other miraculous things.

Can this happen with what is in this product? Due to the amount of film forming agents in this, when you apply the Collagen Gold, your skin will feel tighter. It feels sticky. If you've ever used the popular glue for jewelry making called E6000, it is similar to the feeling you get when you accidentally get the glue on your skin. This is temporary and while it will make your skin feel tight, that doesn't mean you are indeed making your skin more youthful or firmer.

The ingredients in this that may help with the collagen are the peptides. The Tripeptide 10 came out almost 3 years ago and can be found sold as DECORINYL™ . The recommended usage rate, though, is 5%. If the appropriate amount is not used, this won't be nearly as effective. There is no way that there is an effective amount of this peptide in here. Why? 

This comes long after the parabens and Diazolidinyl Urea on the ingredients list. The usage rate for these is about 0.5%. That is one half of one percent. So, in theory, there would be perhaps 0.001-0.01% or so of the peptides in here--this would render it ineffective.

This product cannot and will not live up to its claims because of the ingredients in it. It's make your skin sticky and later very smooth, but it's not a miracle by any stretch.


I still have to tell you the one most ridiculous thing about this product, though.


On the website, the directions for use say "For best results, apply one pump of DermaSilk Collagen Gold to clean, dry skin. Use morning and evening on entire face. Continue with other skincare steps after Collagen Gold is completely absorbed."

That is not what it says, though, on the bottle. This is what I got a kick out of. On the actual bottle, it says "For best results, apply 2-3 drops of DermaSilk Collagen Gold to clean, dry skin. Use morning and evening on entire face. For optimum results, finish one bottle within a week."


How confusing. Which is it? The box and the website say to use one pump. The bottle first says 2-3 drops and then goes on to say to USE THE WHOLE BOTTLE WITHIN ONE WEEK! At $40 a bottle? So I would be spending more than $2000 a year on this product alone, then?
 
WOW.


If you still want to buy this product, please promise not to use the whole bottle in one week! With the amount of film formers (which can clog pores) and all of the chemicals in it, I worry about that much exposure to so many synthetic preservatives.


The Chic & Green Bottom Line:
 
Skip it. At $49.99 or even the "special" price of $39.99 for 0.5 ounces, you're looking at a pump bottle full of chemicals and empty promises. By the way, look for reviews of the other products in this line. Not all are bad. However, some make even sillier claims. One even uses snail secretions as the miracle ingredient.

Disclosure: I was sent products at no cost for review. This in no way has influenced my opinion or outcome of the review.
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