My Take On StriVectin-SD

Strivectin SD ImagesStriVectin SD is a line of skin care products that are designed to protect skin against the signs of aging and reduce fine lines and wrinkles. The particular product I am reviewing here is StriVectin SD, which has the slogan, “The Stretch Mark Cream turned Anti-Wrinkle Phenomenon!” The active ingredient in StriVectin SD is the 5% striadil complex, which I will review below.

Investigating the product on the manufacturer website, I was excited to finally see a product with some scientific research behind it. Here is what the website cites:

Tuesday, July 2, 2002, at a meeting of the 20th World Congress of Dermatology in Paris, France, a series of studies detailing the superior wrinkle-reducing properties of a patented oligo-peptide “called Pal-KTTKS” versus retinol, vitamin C, and placebo, on “photo-aged skin” was presented.“As luck would have it,” Dr. Mowrey states, “the anti-wrinkle oligo-peptide tested in the breakthrough clinical trials turned out to be a key ingredient in the StriVectin® cream.” In the trials, subjects applied the patented peptide solution to the crows' feet area on one side of the face, and a cream containing either retinol, vitamin C, or a placebo to the other side.

Subjects in the Pal-KTTKS/retinol study applied the cream once a day for 2 months and then twice a day for the next 2 months. Using special image analysis, the study's authors reported “significant improvement” in both the overall appearance of skin tone and wrinkles for those women using the peptide solution.

According to the product’s usage instructions, a patch test should be done on the forearm before beginning regular use of StriVectin-SD®. It is recommended, at the website, that the product be applied to the target areas three times daily, using a circular motion, until it is absorbed into the skin completely. In 24-hour period, three applications should not be exceeded, and the product is not suitable for pregnant or nursing women.

The price is a bit steep: $135/6 oz tube. There is a 100% money back guarantee from the company, if you return the unused portion within 30 days. I have seen other websites that offer a 60 day money back guarantee with free shipping, so if you do go with this product, shop around.

Product Claims:

  • Pal-KTTKS solution's effectiveness at reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles far exceeded both vitamin C and placebo.
  • A smoother, younger complexion, with less irritation and faster results—all without expensive (and painful) peels, implants or injections.

The studies that are cited on the website:

"Relevance of antiwrinkle treatment of a peptide: 4 months clinical double blind study vs excipient." 20th World Congress of Dermatology (60 subjects - 4 mos.)

"Pentapeptide offers improvement in human photoaged facial skin." 20th World Congress of Dermatology (204 subjects - 14 weeks)

I checked them out. They are legit scientific articles published in a dermatology journal.

Cross Examination:

Here is the list of ingredients:

The super secret Striadril Complex: Phyllanthus Emblica Fruit Extract, Siegesbeckia Orientalis Extract, Polyglyceryl Methacrylate, Propylene Glycol, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Glucosamine HCL, Algae Extract, Yeast Extract, Urea, Butylene Glycol,DMDM Hydantoin, Hydrocotyl Extract, Coneflower Extract, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Hydrolyzed Wheat Starch, Imperata Cylindrica Root Extract, Bearberry Extract and Licorice PTH

Other ingredients: Deionized Water, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Sesame Oil, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Sweet Almond Oil, Cetearyl Olivate, Sorbitan Olivate, Glycerin, PPG-12/SMDI Copolymer, Glyceryl Stearate & PEG-100 Stearate, Cocoa Butter, Stearic Acid, Shea Butter, Tocopheryl Acetate, Mango Butter, Peppermint Oil, Methylparaben, Xanthan Gum, Propylparaben, Triethanolamine, Butylene Glycol, Disodium EDTA, Retinyl Palmitate, Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate

There are several good things about this product that make it a good wrinkle reducing cream. But you can get the same or better creams for less money – for $135, this should be something spectacular! But I digress: let’s talk about what is good – the striadyl complex.

The striadyl complex employs the use of palmitoyl oligopeptide. And while I could not find any specific studies on this particular ingredient, peptides are widely used in wrinkle creams, because of their ability to stimulate collagen synthesis.  This ingredient is the only one I would say that is clinically proven to reduce wrinkles. For the money, you should be getting more than one wrinkle reducing ingredient.

The striadyl complex also is a nice proprietary blend of herbs and holistic ingredients known to even skin tone and reduce inflammation. Licorice and coneflower extract are healing herbs, algae extract and glucosamine are both excellent hydrating ingredients, but not necessarily wrinkle reducing.

In other ingredients, almond oil is clinically proven to decelerating the photoaging process, tocopheryl (vitamin E) is a good anti-oxidant, but not the best. Peppermint oil is known to reduce inflammation in skin, and probably is effective in calming stretch marks.

The rest of the ingredients, such as shea butter, sesame oil, mango butter, and cocoa butter, are excellent moisturizers and skin emollients, and contribute to overall skin health and a youthful appearance, because they hydrate so well. But these will not, I repeat, will not, reverse wrinkles as effectively as other high-end wrinkle creams that include more advanced wrinkle fighting ingredients, such as ubiquinone, deanol, D3PA, Matrixyl 3000™, or Argireline™.  For the price, you should be getting more wrinkle fighters, but really, what you are getting is a really nice moisturizer.

One final thought on cross examination: kudos to StriVectin for taking their product seriously and protecting it from oxidation in a tube instead of a pot!

The Bottom Line:

For the price, StriVectin SD is a good, not great, product. Sure, the product was clinically proven to fight wrinkles better than vitamin C, but vitamin C alone is not as hard to beat in the wrinkle fighting category. I would like to see this product in a double blind study up against some of the wrinkle fighting heavy hitters that I listed above.

For stretch marks, this product probably cannot be beat, if you have the money. But there are other products out there that contain all the moisturizing ingredients StriVectin SD has and are much, much cheaper. If you want more wrinkle fighting bang for your buck, this is not the best value.