Regarding the AHAs and cost of the Age Resist Cleanser -
"There have been a few products in the past which used AHAs in a cleanser and I, personally, have always really liked them - hence why one of the first products I made was the AHA cleanser! Unfortunately AHAs as a raw material are expensive and this is a large size product (150ml as opposed to a 50ml face cream) so it is difficult to get the price down, although we have tried to keep all of our prices as affordable as possible. Going forward, we are developing new cleansers without the AHAs so we can deliver something for everyone's needs."
I mentioned that I was puzzled as to why on the details about the moisturiser it stated to realistically expect to see result after six month. Dr. Darren explained his reasons for this time scale.
"With regards to the age resistant moisturiser, one of the main active ingredients in this product is palmitoyl pentapeptide 4. There are of course other ingredients which will have benefit to the skin and the simple act of moisturising will provide short term benefits too, but the main anti-wrinkle effect is coming from the pentapeptide. The original study which demonstrated this to be effective however was conducted over a six month period and although there were benefits before the end of the six months, that is when the maximal benefits were achieved and that is the basis of the four to six months claim."
I wasn't sure why they had chosen to use the "this isn't a miracle" type slogan but I better understand now that the rationale here is not to promise results or time scales that cannot be directly backed up by scientific research. For example, the Face Renewal Mask aims to improve radiance, whilst it includes actives like the bio ferment to improve radiance, no actually figures are available to quantify the improvement -
"The trouble with radiance is that it is is difficult to measure scientifically, and so trying to find an active which is scientifically proven to boost skins radiance is challenging. If you are measuring the effect of an anti-wrinkle active, you can take some photos before and after and have a computer analyse the number and depth of wrinkles. With radiance, it is much more difficult to do that and so the science here is much less conclusive."
It was clear from Dr. McKeown's email that their products are based on good ingredients and plenty of consideration has gone into the formulation. I complete understand the point that they wanted to keep the packaging simple, highlighting three main ingredients and keeping an aesthetically pleasing look. I accept the packaging probably isn't the right place for lots of science or information about the brand background but I do think it's worth trying to getting the message about their approach out there. In a venue such as Superdrug, where it's up to you as the consumer to make decisions on your own based entirely on what you see in front of you, a unique selling point is essential. Especially when prices are higher than most Superdrug brands. I was delighted to hear that Dr. McKeown already has plans to address this -
"I think what you have identified on your blog really is a need for more information, and that is actually something we are working on. We are building a new website which will contain an almost encyclopaedic database of skin care actives (including actives I do and don't use), providing as much of the original scientific evidence for and against each and our reasoning in what we have decided to use, and that way people can decide for themselves if they agree with us or not."
It is clear that Dr. Darren McKeown really is behind his skin care brand and isn't simply a name stamped on their boxes. I said in my original post that you're either offering good products that don't offer a miracle that are affordably priced. Or you're providing skin care with active or novel ingredients that offer proven results that justify the price tag. Having had the benefit of more background from Dr. Darren, I do think it's a brand that is underselling itself. I appreciate that they don't want to fall into the trap of hype and exaggerate claims but I think that's worthy of a little trumpet blowing all on it's own!
I'm really pleased to have had such a positive outcome from writing a very honest review. Not all brands respond so well, so I have great respect for anyone willing to take on board and address negative comments. I look forward to seeing more from Naked Truth in the future and if you do give anything a try, I'd love to hear what you think.