Serious skincare breakthroughs—laser resurfacing, Botox, retinoic acid—are normally developed for crow’s feet or deep wrinkles on the forehead and around the mouth. But La Mer is turning the tables, focusing on an area of the face that is not only difficult to treat but also is a telltale sign of a woman’s age: the jawline. Instead of releasing an incredibly rich neck cream—the industry standard for treating the neck and jaw topically—they’ve taken it a step further with the just-released The Lifting Contour Serum ($345).
Applying Shape Creation to Skin
Inspired by the concept of shape creation, the brand looked to scientific breakthroughs in 3D printing and flexible glass for insight on the principles of shapeshifting substances. Then, they applied that knowledge to facial movement to determine where the building blocks of our skin need to be strengthened in order to be lifted. Their serum focuses on collagen and elastin fibers, fibroblasts, and how they’re anchored to the dermis or skin. La Mer spent six years studying and testing, securing things like the aforementioned flexible glass, a technology that only Apple, Samsung, and La Mer had at the end of last year.
“It’s as simple as when Tempurpedic commercialized technology from Nasa,” says Loretta Miraglia, senior vice president of global brand development and product innovation for La Mer, referring to their use of new technology.
The Miracle Ingredients
So what exactly made it into the serum? A hefty dose of the brand’s miracle broth (the main ingredient in their other products, like the Soft Cream), plus a cocktail of perennial brown algae from the coastal regions of the North Atlantic and copper-rich blue algae, fermented until incredibly potent. But the better question is, what kind of results can you expect?
The Test and Results
The jaw is, traditionally, a very difficult place to see lift without visiting a dermatologist or surgeon’s office. So much, in fact, there wasn’t even a proper clinical test to measure the effects of a topical product targeting the jawline. “They [clinicians] had to develop a test for that. It’s not a typical thing,” Miraglia says. “Now we’re the hallmark for all those that come after us.”
The test, a 3D-imaging ultrasound that measures angles of the skin, helped to capture the incredibly-impressive overall results. An independent study over eight weeks showed a 68 percent lift in the face, 51 percent lift in the jowls, and 63 percent lift in the eye area; plus it helped lines and wrinkles (45 percent decrease) and increased firmness by 38 percent. It turns out, what’s good for the goose is good for the gander, or in this case, what’s good for the jaw is good for every other area on the face.
How to Apply the Serum
But it’s more than just the formula that’s worth trying. Celebrity esthetician Joanna Czech—she works with Cate Blanchett, Christy Turlington, and Kate Winslet—designed a special application method that provides its own firming properties and optimal absorption of the product. (Obviously, you want to make sure every last drop soaks in!) Surprisingly, something like serum doesn’t absorb through your pores, Czech says. Instead, products soak in best with the use of pressure. “I believe in a press and release action; a sponge-like technique,” she says.
“When you press on the skin, it slightly stretches, and when you release, it grasps whatever is on the surface.”
You’ll find a diagram and instructions in each box of serum, but follow the technique Czech taught us: after cleansing and toning, apply your serum all over your face, jaw, and neck, then massage it into the skin, starting at your chin. Working upwards, use firm movements to press and release along your jaw, over your ears, and onto your forehead. Then, starting under your nose, repeat in an invisible line starting at your nose, under your cheekbones (this feels weird at first), then back to your forehead.
Reduce the pressure when working under your eyes, tapping from the inside corner out to your temple. Repeat three times. This should take about ten minutes and should be done twice a day.
The Truth About Aging
You’ve probably noticed La Mer’s new serum doesn’t come cheap, so when should you truly start investing in this kind of skincare? According to Czech, collagen and elastin starts breaking down just before 30. “It depends on genetics and lifestyle, but the aging process starts aging around 29,” she says. “So start gluing it before it starts falling apart!”