Crépe Erase makes anti-aging skincare products targeted to women. The brand claims their products are “clinically shown to work” because they developed a “breakthrough blend” of essential phytonutrients.
In this article we’ll review the ingredients in Crépe Erase’s most popular products based on medical research to determine if they’re likely to be effective for anti-aging, and explain why we find the company’s health claims to be misleading.
Misleading Claims of Clinical Proof
As referenced in the intro, this brand claims their products are “clinically proven” to work. In the scientific community, this means a product or ingredient has been proven to work in published scientific journals, which are typically peer-reviewed. It’s an extensive process with a very high standard, and the data is typically high-quality.
Clinical trials involve multiple phases of research and analysis prior to publication.
This is why we see it as a huge red flag when skincare brands claim their products are “clinically proven” to work because they paid some research firm to test it on 40 people. This is not clinical research in any meaningful sense of the term and does not prove anything to a rational consumer. There is too much bias involved.
Crépe Erase doesn’t even publish the results of the research they claimed to conduct. Their claims of clinical efficacy just have an asterisk that states “Based upon an 8-week clinical study.”
Restorative Facial Treatment Review
The face is one of the key areas for targeted anti-aging products because skin is thinner on the face than on most of the body.
One of the first ingredients in Crépe Erase’s Restorative Facial Treatment is olive oil. The brand claims its antioxidants may “protect from premature aging.”
This claim does appear to be true for topically-applied olive oil. A medical review of the dermatological benefits of different plant oil found that olive oil had an antioxidant effect, an anti-inflammatory effect, and a “possible effect” for anti-aging.
The cream also contains cocoa butter, which is an effective non-toxic natural moisturizer that’s been shown in a clinical study to positively affect several parameters of skin elasticity and tone.
One strange thing about the facial treatment product page is Crépe Erase highlights that this product contains their “TruFirm Complex” which consists of dill, apple and sage extracts, but the full ingredient list doesn’t include sage.
The cream also contains coconut oil which was shown in the previously-linked study of plant oils to be optimal for not only skin moisturization but also anti-aging effect.
The only ingredient we take issue with in this formulation is phenoxyethanol, a common preservative with some documented negative effects on cells in vitro. This isn’t an especially dangerous ingredient but we generally recommend avoiding cosmetics with preservatives.
Overall this is a relatively well-formulated and effective product for improving skin health. We don’t see much evidence for anti-aging effect, but several of the botanical ingredients included do appear to be beneficial for skin overall.
We don’t recommend the product due to the mislabeling issue and inclusion of the preservative, but it’s superior to many cosmetic product formulations we’ve reviewed previously.
Lift & Smooth Neck Firming Treatment Review
One of Crépe Erase’s most popular products is their serum for skin on the neck.
We want to note that when cosmetics brands make different formulations for the face and neck it’s typically just for marketing purposes. While skin under and around the eyes can be extremely thin and sensitive, and may require targeted dermatological treatment, there isn’t any biological reason why certain ingredients would work on face skin but not neck skin, and vice versa.
Like the previous product, this one advertises the brand’s “TruFirm Complex” but doesn’t have sage (which is one one of three TruFirm ingredients) listed on the ingredients list.
One effective ingredient in the neck firming cream is caffeine, which has been shown in medical research to penetrate the skin barrier and prevent excessive accumulation of fat cells, making it an ideal ingredient for a firming topical treatment.
Dill extract does appear to be an effective ingredient for skin products, as research has shown it to not only improve skin elasticity but also appearance of wrinkles. The linked study found that dill extract “significantly reduced mean wrinkle area and length” when applied topically at a 1% concentration.
Another interesting ingredient in the Neck Firming Treatment is niacinamide, which has been proven to not only improve surface structure of skin in human patients but also provide photoprotection.
The dipeptide carnosine appears in preliminary research to prevent skin damage, so this seems like another effective choice for the formulation. There are fewer human studies backing this ingredient than the ones mentioned previously, but it appears to be non-toxic so there should be no issue using it.
Crépe Erase’s neck cream contains the same preservative their face cream did, but also contains another one called sodium benzoate.
We recommend avoiding preservatives in supplements and skincare out of an abundance of caution, but we don’t believe either of these preservatives are particularly likely to be harmful, and they are well-studied.
While we wouldn’t recommend this product due to the inclusion of preservatives, it may be a good option for consumers who are more focused on aesthetics as opposed to health. The cream definitely includes a wide range of effective ingredients for skin health and aging, and is one of the better cosmetic formulations we’ve reviewed to date.
It’s unfortunate that Crépe Erase makes questionable claims about their clinical research, because otherwise this does appear to be a brand that takes their formulations seriously.
As we discussed at length in our review of taut skin and ingredients that help achieve it, we believe that lifestyle changes tend to be more effective for reducing signs of skin aging than topical products.
Collagen powder has been extensively studied and can improve various parameters of skin health like wrinkles, hydration and skin elasticity. Collagen is a functional food that provides other health benefits as well, and is safe and non-toxic.
We recommend 10 grams (g) daily of collagen powder to improve skin, as this appears to be the maximally efficacious dose based on an incredibly thorough meta-study on collagen and skin.
As far as collagen brands, we recommend any brand that sources from pastured animals and contains no filler ingredients. Collagen should be the only ingredient on the label. We’ve used Vital Proteins unflavored before and liked it.
Another important note for further skin damage prevention is that avoidance of sun can have significant effects on slowing skin aging. Some research has shown that, at least in Caucasian patients, exposure to the sun’s rays may be responsible for upwards of 80% of visible skin damage.
This doesn’t mean to avoid the outdoors, but wearing a hat makes sense for patients concerned about the appearance of their facial skin.