Monday, 7 April 2014

The New Breed Of Creams Caring For Unique Menopausal Skin

It can be one of the most distressing periods in a woman’s life and something many women find difficult to open up about. I am talking about the menopause, that moment in time which marks the end of fertility.

For something so natural and normal I find it upsetting that the menopause is shrouded by stigma and negativity. Many women at this point in their life feel ashamed, that they are no longer beautiful, that they have already served their main purpose in life, to reproduce. They need support and encouragement, not a wall of silence and sneering.

The beauty industry is awash with anti-ageing products to fix wrinkles, age spots, loss of firmness and so on, but I see little mention of the menopause in the context of skincare. Why? Dry skin, oily skin, spots, facial hair, sagging skin, facial flushes – these (and more) are all skin issues that can occur even at the very early ‘peri’ stage of menopause as a result of a drop in the female hormone oestrogen. Ageing suddenly accelerates but the link with menopause is often not made, unless you deliberately seek it out and research it.

It is against this background that I applaud the few beauty brands who have recently launched skincare ranges for menopausal women, including Rodial with its March announced Cougar line (while I applaud their move I find their choice of brand name quite vulgar).

But the product I am going to talk about today is Stratum C, a line of skincare launched in September last year by British company Forme Laboratories.

Stratum C uses a mix of 6 different peptides to combat skin problems related to the menopause. It has already secured a celebrity fan, the gorgeous TV presenter Linda Barker who has spoken publicly about her challenges with the menopause.

The formula in Stratum C stems from research into wound healing and skincare carried out at Reading University. According to Forme Labs its combination of peptides – chains of amino acids – has been shown in studies to nearly double the skin’s own production of collagen.  Why is this important? Because menopause suppresses the body’s natural collagen production. It is said that as much as 30% of our collagen is lost during the menopause.

The Stratum C line – named after the outermost skin layer - comprises 5 products: a night and day moisturiser, a repair serum, a gentle cleanser, a pigment correction gel and a spot relief paste. I was sent the moisturiser to test and I have been using it for a few weeks now - more on my findings in a minute.

How Stratum C works:

- it uses 2 different combinations of peptides: 1) to relax the muscles and 2) to stimulate collagen growth
- it uses Hyaluronic Acid to improve skin hydration and elasticity
- it contains a base moisturiser based on natural ingredients including jojoba oil and apricot kernel oil, the latter being a good source of vitamins A and E which are both lost during menopause

Forme Labs also says its moisturiser contains 45% water (its serum just 18%!), compared to high-street anti-ageing brands which can contain as much as 90% water and offer tiny quantities of active ingredients.

After 2 weeks of using Stratum C as my only day and night moisturiser, what do I think? While I can’t comment on some aspects of its effectiveness, as I don’t have menopausal skin, I have found this cream to be incredibly moisturising. It’s been an instant thirst quencher for my skin, which has become drier as I’ve got older. When I touch my skin after I’ve applied it, it feels extremely moist and looks beautifully hydrated. 

Final thoughts:

As I get older I can see myself looking ever more closely at product labels to check for ingredients that are know to combat menopausal skin problems. Using Stratum C, meantime, has been an introduction to that future – and a very positive one!

The Stratum C Moisturiser costs £85 and can be bought here.

PR Sample 


  1. Thanks dear for the awesome post.
    I hate menopause and dont want it ... causes skin change, insomnia and weight gain! Ohhh :(
    It is very good to know that the effects of menopause are not a "conviction" and may be limited if we care of our skin in advance.

    1. I know. Horrible side effects. Made worse by the stigma. But like you say it is a comfort to know there are treatments available. Talking about these things openly is a good thing and to be encouraged :)

  2. Great post! It's so good to read some positive solutions to some of the miserable side-effects affecting women going through the menopause. Up till now I've been fairly lucky with my symptoms but I have definitely noticed a difference in the texture and feel of my skin, this product seems to offer some solutions to the problem. Thank you for a really informative post! x

    1. Thank you for your kind words. They mean a lot. Let's just hope that these first creams are the start of something bigger so women widely feel there is help out there and menopause as a subject is more openly spoken about. Tx

  3. I guess people expect menopause to be dealt with through hormones rather than through skincare, but you are right, there is definitely more that could be done in this matter. Thanks for bringing this to our attention, I never even thought about skincare for menopause. Great review, Tracey!

    1. Thank you! I just wish it was spoken about more and in more positive terms. It's a future every woman faces and yet there are hardly any beauty products marketed specifically for it. Tons of creams and potions for skin in pregnancy and post birth so why not the other side of that cycle. I'll get off my soap box now ;)

  4. Hope you don't mind but I've just nominated you for a Very Inspiring Blogger award. x

    1. Hi Deborah. Of course I don't mind! I'm flattered. Thank you :)

  5. This sounds interesting... I'm a woman of a certain age (smile), so it's always good hear hear about new products such as this. T.

  6. Been trying Stratum C now based on this Review. Initially I was worried as the texture is a gel/cream formulation and I've never found these effective in addressing the dryness of menopausal skin and I usually go for heavy creams, such as Eve Lom. However after 10 days my skin seemed to adjust and felt...well, 'normal'.

    This is a surprise for me as my skin is super-dry and tight and I'm used to slathering on oils and creams. After 10 days, my skin is feeling comfortable and looks finer. I'm not seeing any lifting effect, but that isn't a problem as I'm more concerned with skin comfort and texture than lifting.

    So its been good, but I can't help feel that at this price point (£85 GBP) that it should offer more softening and immediate effects, whereas it's taken the full 10 days to see any changes. One point also is that the Cream comes with no inner leaflet at all; application and a few lines of blurb are on the carton only which again seems odd given the Price and uniqueness of the product.

    Would I buy again? Probably not as there are creams that offer more at similar prices out there that don't label themselves as being menopausal specific.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
© Face Up Beauty. All rights reserved.
Blogger Designs by pipdig