Drunk Elephant’s Protini Is Now a Workhorse Serum With a Long List of Skin Benefits

When the Drunk Elephant Protini Moisturizer launched in 2018, Tiffany Masterson threw a party in its honor at New York City's Rose Bar at the Gramercy Hotel, a frequent A-lister hangout where portraits of celebrity icons hang in super-sized splendor on the walls. It was something of a foreshadowing moment from Masterson, who knew her new moisturizer was about to join the ranks of superstars. And in only three short years, the peptide-laced cream has done just that, landing a spot as a best-seller at Sephora, winning over the hearts and complexions of thousands, and becoming the brand's top product. And today, Drunk Elephant announced a serum version of the moisturizer that's meant to be even more of a workhorse in your routine: the Protini Polypeptide Resurf Serum.

Due to hit Drunk Elephant's website tomorrow (and Sephora shelves on April 1), the brand's newest serum utilizes a blend of 11 complexion-strengthening peptides,  plant-derived growth factors, amino acids, and lactic acid. This concentrated blend has a hefty job: Polish up skin, even out its tone, nix fine lines, sun damage, and enhancedpores, all while plumping and bringing on mega-radiance. Piece of cake, right? "We wanted to bring those same exact barrier boosting benefits [as the Protini cream] to other areas of the routine," says Masterson. And in boosting the barrier, she's come up with an innovative new formula that pretty much acts as a do-it-all for skin.

This product is unique in that it contains a gentle exfoliating ingredient (lactic acid) combined with treatment ingredients (peptides, amino acids, and plant-derived growth factors). Dermatologists are quick to tell patients that for those treatment ingredients to seep into the skin to get to work, the dead skin cells on top of skin need to be sloughed away. "I always like to have a little bit of a spin on each product, something of a little bit of an edge on each product," says Masterson. "I just thought, this is a really appropriate time to throw in some lactic acid. Because this way, you can move the dead skin cells out of the way through exfoliation, it's hydrating, and then everything can soak in even better."

Experts In This Article
  • Joshua Zeichner, MD, director of cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology and associate professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital
  • TIffany Masterson, Tiffany Masterson is the founder of Drunk Elephant Skincare.

Coming Soon: Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Resurf Serum, $82


Coming Soon: Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Resurf Serum, $82

Once those dead skin cells are moved out of the way, the peptides are able to sink into skin and help promote collagen production within skin. Around the time we hit our thirtieth birthdays, collagen and elastin stores in the skin start to wane. Moisture levels dip and we begin to see fine lines and wrinkles start to accumulate on our faces. Given that we live most of our lives with post-30-year-old skin, supplementing these ingredients within skin can be an empowering way to promote skin longevity throughout our lifespan. "Peptides are messengers that boost your skin cells' activity, and have various functions depending on the particular peptide,"  Joshua Zeichner, MD, a board-certified dermatologist in New York previously told Well+Good. Because this serum has 11 different signal peptides, it's able to give skin a multitude of benefits that range from hydration to skin brightening.

When I try the serum for myself, I find that it's lightweight and not-at-all sticky like I've found some peptide serums to be. I use it morning and night for a week, followed by a moisturizer and SPF in the a.m. and a moisturizer and an occasional glycolic serum at night. One thing that I particularly like about it is that it calmly and cooly does its job without making my skin react and turn red, the way other treatment serums have been known to do. Over the course of the week, my skin feels softer and brighter, and given that Protini is my go-to moisturizer and has greatly improved my hyperpigmentation over time, I have no doubt that with continued use of the serum I'll see even more benefits to come.

When it comes to improving your skin, compliance is the most important element in every routine. So while I find hour-long regimens fun sometimes, they don't fit into my day-to-day life in a big way. What Masterson has done with her line is create products that work in more than one way for skin so that you can get the show on the road. "I don't believe in trends. I think what's true today for skin health has always been true, and what we will continue to lean into as Drunk Elephant," says Masterson. Today, tomorrow, forever, the happy-go-lucky skin-care line is ready to be put to work and the newest product is a reminder of that creed.

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