There are times when I forget I’m aging. The truth is, in many ways, I don’t really feel all that different than I did ten or fifteen years ago, save some hard earned lessons and significantly more comfort with myself. My face tells a different story: I’m now in my late 30s and over the past few years, fine lines have emerged. And a lifetime of outdoor running and a childhood on Maui have led to sunspots and hyperpigmentation.
So far, I’ve resisted interventions save for a serious devotion to a good SPF (Lesse’s Every Tone SPF 30 is heaven), a nourishing moisturizer, and the occasional facial. But when I heard about the new Wrinkle Erasing Retinol Patches from the clinical skincare line 111SKIN, I was highly intrigued. The concept is simple but innovative: silicone patches—shaped to fit on the forehead, frown lines, eyes, and smile lines—release retinol, sodium hyaluronate (an ultra-potent hyaluronate acid known to help draw moisture into the epidermis), ascorbyl glucoside (a Vitamin C derivative) and acetyl octapeptide-3 (a peptide complex) into the skin using an array of “microcones” that penetrate the outer layer of the skin. They’re essentially designed to replace or prolong injectables. It’s a highly appealing offer: who needs Botox when a luxe face mask will do the job?
The patches come in packs of five, with three shapes for the different target zones. I tried the various patches overnight and during the day (the brand suggests wearing them for at least 2 hours). They are tight on the skin but otherwise barely noticeable—if you’re a light sleeper, I would recommend daytime application. They also have immediate results, a rarity in an industry often dominated by outsize claims. I noticed a brighter, dewier complexion. There was also the slightest fading of my forehead lines. (Despite plenty of promises, no cream has ever done this.) I’m still slightly in awe.
As in the case of all 111Skin products, the Wrinkle Erasing Retinol Patches are not cheap. These are investment products, designed for targeted high impact. They recommend using them three times a week until results are noticed. I’ll personally be saving them for times when I need an extra boost. A small moment of transformation can go a long way.