Cosmetic products: how to decrypt what brands are telling you

Most brands use ambiguous terms that imply quality or even better, efficiency. Here are a few examples to help you differentiate between promises and reality.

1. “Tested under dermatological control” : a pure marketing tool

The term “dermatologically tested” is by no means an added value. Indeed, without “dermatological control” the product simply cannot be on the market. Moreover, the mandatory regulatory analyzes include specific steps:

  • Analyzes on the product itself in order to measure its antimicrobial activity (Challenge Test).
  • Analyzes on human guinea pigs (Patch Test).
  • Tests on cells, measuring irritability.

The Age Tech Serum has been qualified as 100% non-irritant and non-allergenic as a result of these tests. This is the information that counts. 

2. The percentages of satisfaction surveys

Satisfaction surveys are not a scientific tool. They are subject to biases intrinsic to the placebo effect, which is generally overlooked. They are often misrepresented as clinical studies. The most important thing is to pay attention to how the results are displayed.

Example: Mention of the type “wrinkle reduction: 70% *”.

It is common to find a percentage next to an advertised reduction in wrinkles. But often next to the numbers there is an asterisk that should not be missed. In general, this specifies that the percentage is not related to the actual reduction in wrinkles, but to a subjective satisfaction or “self-assessment” study. This is therefore the percentage of people who believe they have detected a decrease in wrinkles. 

3. Misleading clinical figures

The efficacy study is an objective measure of skin parameters such as hydration, the presence of hyperpigmentation and the depth of wrinkles. This step represents a very significant cost in the research and development budget. It will obviously not be the same for a young company as for market giants. It is therefore difficult to understand why many big brands do without this step.

It is also funny to note that a good number of brands – despite having carried out real clinical studies – still continue everything to create confusion. For example, they will highlight the percentage of people who had clinically measured wrinkle reduction and not the wrinkle reduction itself.

Indeed, a claim stating “75% reduction in wrinkles” should be viewed with suspicion. Again, an asterisk will generally refer to an explanation that will specify a measure of reduction of wrinkles in 75% of people, and not 75% of reduction in the depth or number of wrinkles.

4. The Age Tech Serum: clinical study of efficacy and transparency of information

Beyond having a satisfaction rate close to 100%, we have carried out efficacy studies in an independent laboratory, verifying the concrete benefits of our serum. We did not hesitate to invest heavily in the latter in order to present you quantified results without asterisk: up to 64% reduction in the depth of wrinkles, 28% increase in skin firmness, 75% of ‘increased skin hydration, 40% reduction in age spots.

In summary, beware of brands claiming that their product has been dermatologically tested, that is to say of a food, that it is edible. Likewise, the percentages of satisfaction studies are subjective, and have nothing to do with the results of concrete biomechanical measurements performed in a clinical efficacy study.

At The Age Tech, we would like to see these efficacy tests become mandatory and systematic; for the defense of consumers and for innovation to take over in the cosmetics industry.

 

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