Brand Overview: Perricone MD

If you’re a skincare freak, NY Times bestseller follower or you’re obsessed with nutrition science, you’ve probably come across the name Dr Nicholas Perricone once or twice. He’s one of those people that make you re-evaluate your life’s work and question your whole way of living all at once. Not only is he a board certified dermatologist, certified nutrition specialist, amateur astronomer, but he’s also been at the forefront of skin science since the early 1990’s. In 1997 he launched his award winning brand “Perricone MD” through which he would introduce numerous innovative formulas (over 116 patents) that would take the skincare world by storm. Perricone believes in a 3 Tier philosophy that revolves around his inflammation theory; that persistent inflammation ages our body and an anti-inflammatory diet, nutritional supplements and clinical skincare care all help to prevent and reverse the harmful effects of inflammation. Just looking at photos of the now 69 year old is a testament to his 3 step program, he’s glowing. Now I could talk for hours about Dr Nicholas Perricone and his theories on ageing and inflammation, but we’d be here for way too long; lets focus on the third step of his philosophy: topical skincare.

With over 116 patents in skincare, it’s hard to choose just a few technologies and ingredients to focus on but I’ve picked a special few that I think are integral to the Perricone MD skincare line.


Alpha Lipoic Acid

Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) is found naturally in our cells and is a part of the enzyme system. Used topically it can help neutralizes free radicals on the cell membrane and helps prevent pro-inflammatory chemicals from forming. It is 400 times more potent, regarding its antioxidant properties, than Vitamin C and E. In skincare ALA can help to reduce the depth of acne scars, reduce the appearance of lines and scars, improve overall tone of the skin (including reducing redness, dullness and blotchiness) and reduce dark circles by regulating nitric oxide. ALA (thioctic acid in ingredient lists) is found in the classic High Potency Face Firming Activator, a morning time treatment which reduces the length, depth and width of wrinkles while also evening out skin tone and reducing the appearance of pore size.


A nutrient complex that protects against free radical damage by strengthening skin cells and their membranes. DMAE increases the production of the neurotransmitters acetylcholine, causing the muscles in the skin to tighten and so sagging is reduced.  DMAE will also enhance the effects of Alpha Lipoic Acid and other antioxidants. DMAE was explained to me as “spanx for the skin”, improving the appearance of firmness, lift and tone, protecting against free radical damage, reducing the look of fine lines and wrinkles, and evening out skin tone. DMAE can be found in many of Perricone’s products (find Dimethyl MEA in the ingredients list) but you can see the immediate effect with the DMAE Firming Pads, which are perfect for a pre-event skin pick me up.



Vitamin C Ester

We all know how great Vitamin C is for the skin; it promotes collagen production, boosts radiance, targets sun damage and improves discolouration. However, the stability of Vitamin C used in skincare has always been an issue. It’s why many Vitamin C products come in air tight, UV ray proof packaging; even so Vitamin C still breaks down incredibly quickly relative to other ingredients. Enter Vitamin C Ester (Ascorbyl Palmitate). The first of its kind, Vitamin C Ester is a fat soluble form of vitamin C, meaning it can penetrate the cell membrane. It is a highly stable form of Vitamin C and more effective than other forms of Vitamin C at lower concentrations. Vitamin C Ester in your skincare can minimize the appearance of discolouration, reduce dark circles, promote radiant looking skin and target signs of ageing like wrinkles and fine lines. If you want the highest concentration of Vitamin C Ester, then Vitamin C Ester 15 is the product for you. It’s an 8 week night time treatment to brighten, firm and reduce discolouration.

Cold Plasma

It wouldn’t be a Perricone MD formula roundup without mentioning, Cold Plasma, arguably one of the brand’s most incredible advancements in skin science.An innovative carrier system, Cold Plasma delivers nutrients directly into skin cells. Cold plasma is like a “buffet” for your skin, whatever it needs it will take from it. It’s also been proven to increase the production of collagen precursors (glycosaminoglycans) by 160%. The carrier system delivers the powerful effects of ingredients like red algae (supporting healthy barrier function and moisture retention), vitamin c ester, copper tripeptide one (repairs skin cells, promotes firmness and elasticity, and stimulates collagen type 1 and 3), omegas 3,6 and 9, and myrtle flower extract (boosts collagen, slows down glycation) deep into the skin. Cold Plasma targets the most visible signs of ageing including : Fine lines, wrinkles, discolouration, enlarged pores, rough texture, firmness and loss of elasticity, and dryness. Using Cold Plasma also boosts the results of any other skincare you use, YEAH BOY! If you want a bit of cold plasma in your life, give Cold Plasma+ Face a go. It’s a new and improved (better smelling) take on the original cold plasma face. Described as a “multivitamin for your skin” this baby boosts the effects of other products while also targeting the most visible signs of ageing.

So if you’re out of luck with anti-ageing skincare, put on your lab coats and start mixing in some Perricone into your skincare beakers.