"pro-ferm acts on the extra cellular matrix of the
skin not only making it firmer but also better able to
retain moisture, thus differentiating pro-ferm from most
other face creams on the market that act topically"
"A seriously good super-luxe skin-boosting treat"
Health Sciences Institute
Immune Boosters that help rejuvenate ageing skin"
Newby Hands - Beauty Director Harpers Bazaar
but absolutely priceless – my man commented on how soft my
skin felt the day I started using it."
was really amazed at how well it it enhanced and blended
with my existing suntan"
"Verdict: Okay so it's taken eight
years of bio-technical research to create but no need to
blind me with science. The proof is in the application.
And after two weeks, I definitely saw a difference. My
face felt more hydrated and supple - and
yes, perhaps even a little younger..."
It’s hot in Hollywood.
The latest anti-ageing ingredient is beta glucan. Found
in Pro-Ferm Protective Day Cream, it's said to smooth
lines and help wounds heal.
Currently flying off the shelves at Space.NK the
Pro-Ferm range is big in Hollywood. Scarlett Johansson
(picture) is said to be a fan of the Instant Lifting
WHAT DOES IT CLAIM TO DO?
The cream claims to stimulate the skin's own immune system
to improve skin texture, by encouraging the activity of
collagen-producing fibroblasts. As well as making the skin
that bit thicker and more elastic, the cream is particularly
WHAT MAKES IT SPECIAL?
The cream is made of a patented molecular complex, Glucaferm.
This combines 'beta-glucans', substances that activate the
immune cells (the Langerhans cells) in the skin and
accelerate tissue repair. The pills, which include spirulina
(an alga), vitamins and antioxidant carotenoids, give
A DERMATOLOGIST SAYS:
The beta-glucans in the cream have been shown to prevent
contact dermatitis through calming the Langerhans cells,
which can tell when a foreign body is present. I love the
idea of combining oral supplements with topical skincare -
the carotenoids and the vitamin E are great for skin.
OUR TESTER SAYS:
The cream was lovely. It sank into my skin really well and
made it feel cosseted. After six weeks it felt springier. My
skin also looked lightly tanned, which I later learned was
due to the pills' carotenoids.
Alice Hart-Davis - YOU Magazine, Mail on Sunday Oct '06
The World renown beauty Editor Lucia van de
Post described the pro-ferm range by saying:
"Skincare Treatments have finally come
Luxury with Lucia
treatments have finally come of age
It was the American wit Jean
Kerr who, many years ago, said: "I'm tired of all this
nonsense about beauty being only skin deep. That’s deep
enough. What do you want — an adorable pancreas?" Which just
goes to show how things have changed.
These days the boys and girls in white coats have decided
that a beautiful pancreas — or at the very least a beautiful
immune system — is where beautiful skin begins. The new buzz
from the world of creams and potions is about treating your
skin on the outside AND the inside. We're not talking inner
beauty of the spiritual kind here but inner beauty of the
physical kind, based on providing the right vitamins and
Pro-Ferm and Pro-Ferm+, which are hitting the shelves of
Space.NK as I write, are the result of eight years of
serious research carried out by a joint British and German
team at the Biotechnology Institute of the Berlin Technical
University, based on the notion that, for really good skin,
we need to boost our immune systems.
According to Dr Paul Clayton, one of the scientists
involved: "We've oversanitised our environment and our
innate immune system has become slack. On top of that we're
at the end of the antibiotics era — they've been overused
and have lost their effectiveness. Superbugs are just the
tip of the iceberg: today we're almost back to the
The answer to the problem, the scientists say, is to build
up the immune system, which not only will give greater
resistance to disease but will boost cellular regeneration
and improve the skin. The pills, creams I and lotions that
make up the Pro-Ferm collection are made with beta-glucans (www.beta-glucans.co.uk).
“This is an amazing molecule that almost everybody in
beta-glucan research — including me — believes in so much
that they give it to their children.” says Clayton. The
Pro-Ferm collection is what he calls “the first co-ordinated
approach to skin matrix renewal".
Young skin cells regenerate at a much faster rate than
ageing ones, and skin begins to look old, tired and slack
when the rate of cell destruction outstrips the rate of cell
renewal. Clayton says that the thinking about why skin ages
has changed. “We used to think that the signs of ageing were
caused by unavoidable degeneration but, in fact, the skin
can be regenerated. It is slow — the reversal takes months —
but it can be done.”
of the brilliance of the science behind the Pro-Ferm range,
which includes pills as well as creams, is the tagging of
betaglucans to hyaluronic acid molecules (contained in the
fluid that lubricates the joints), which deliver them deep
into the basal cell layers of the skin where they promote
cell regeneration. In simple terms, the idea is to make the
skin behave as it used to when it was younger, “reversing
ageing at a very fundamental level”, as Clayton puts it.
Nicky Kinnaird, founder of Space.NK, believes that Pro-Ferm
marks a huge step forward in helping to delay skin ageing.
“What I also like is that it is helping to boost a natural
skin process, which means that it is also a great range for
people whose skin is sensitive to ranges with active
ingredients,” she says.
The range consists of six products, including a Protective
Skin Balm for men, at prices ranging from £35 for the men's
balm to £75 for the Instant Lifting Serum. A two-month
supply of the supplements is £55. Pro-Ferm products are
on line at
What you must to know about anti-ageing
Recent technological advances have
allowed skin care marketers to develop products that target
more specific consumer needs such as anti-ageing and
anti-acne. As a result, consumer attitudes have changed in
many ways. More women today, for example, believe that using
the right skin care can make a visible improvement to their
or the most controversial products to grace our shelves in
2007 is Amatokm. The result of more than a decade or stem
cell research, Amatokin is claimed to be the first and only
topical compound to highlight the expression of stem cell
markers in skin. The product works by kick-starting dormant
cells, helping to reduce the appearance of both deep and
superficial wrinkles, leaving skin smooth.
The product has built up something of a cult status among
consumers with significant waiting lists and products
rumoured to he kept behind the counter by certain retailers
for only their truly 'valued' customers. Many industry
insiders however remain undecided on the merits of these
kinds of products.
"These new formulations push the envelope between science,
technology and cosmetics but the claims seem to be getting
out of control," says Lewis. "Without hard scientific data
that skin care products used topically can have an effect on
DNA and stem cells, the industry may be at risk of
More worryingly, pharmaco nutritionist, Paul Clayton
believes that because this is such new ground for cosmetics,
not enough research has been done to assess the potential
health risks to the consumer.
“Epidermal Growth Factor is an interesting approach to
correcting ageing skin, and may well have the capacity to
reduce wrinkles, but like other non-specific growth factors
such as polyamines, there is a risk that unhealthy (ie
cancerous) cells may be stimulated along with healthy skin
cells” he warns.
cancer cells are more likely to occur in sun aged skin, and
the owners of sun aged skin will be at the head of the queue
to purchase these new creams there is a distinct possibility
that we will see an increase in the numbers of skin
It's frightening food for thought although only theory, and
such risks have not discouraged manufacturers from pushing
the boundaries of cosmetic science.
Another world first is Pro-Ferm, a range of cosmeceutical
and nutriceutical products, said to work on the body's
immune system, strengthening it, boosting cellular
regeneration and improving skin tone. Central to the range
is a combination of the beta-glucan Glucaferm and Hyaferm
that stimulate the skin's Langerhans cells, “We've over
sanitised our environment and our innate immune system has
become slack,” explains Dr Clayton, part of the team behind
“Pro-Ferm works by firstly improving the
skin's immune defences and secondly speeding up the rate of
skin regeneration and healing. Not only that, but beta
glucan, via improving local immunity, protects against
organisms that could otherwise cause disease and clear way
I think this (Pro-Ferm) is probably the biggest advance in
non invasive anti-ageing treatments we have seen yet. It
sets the bar for the next generation of products.”