In You Heard It Here First, the editors at Bustle feature the coolest up-and-coming beauty brands you should have on your radar. Here, Ourself Co-Founder Vimla Black-Gupta and Executive Vice President Lauren Otsuki explain what sets their gender-defying skincare brand apart from other science-based beauty products.

As any skincare lover knows, countless beauty products promise results that they ultimately don’t get. But the founders of recently launched brand Ourself set out to change that, seeking to transform the cosmetics industry and science-based skincare as we know it – for good. “Skincare was ready for a revolution,” Vimla Black-Gupta, president and co-founder of Ourself, tells Bustle about what inspired the gender-defying brand. The brand’s mission? To bring the effects of cosmetic procedures to your skincare routine, delivering clinical-level results without the, well, clinic.

In fact, Ourself ultimately hopes to provide something even better: an at-home alternative to minimally invasive procedures that actually address the root of the problem rather than just modifying it via injections or lasers. “When you perform cosmetic surgeries and procedures, you’re not stimulating the skin,” said Lauren Otsuki, executive vice president and chief innovation officer at Ourself. “A lot of it is just pulling and tucking, and the same goes for fillers: they fill in the space, but don’t address the cause, which is a loss of elasticity and tone in your skin itself.” Additionally, adds Black-Gupta, consumers often struggle with procedures that incentivize too lot of change. “You’re not becoming a better version of yourself,” she says. “This is who we are: a call to action [to] be yourself, but a better version of it. And, to unlock that potential, the brand is turning to its patent-pending bio-engineered Intides™.

Intides™, aka “smart peptides”, are what set us apart from other science-based skincare brands (peptides are tiny chains of amino acids that keep collagen and elastin working properly in your skin). the skin). Because instead of repeating the decades-long process of formulating and reformulating the same list of skincare ingredients in various forms and strengths – as is the case with traditional beauty brands – Ourself embraces a skin-focused approach, adapting components via bio-engineered actives to meet consumer needs rather than the other way around.

These intides are the brand’s brand name for all exclusively selected compounds, peptides and/or macromolecules used in its products. “These are selected and based on [skin care] needs,” says Otsuki. “So if there was sagging or structural issues, we were looking to stimulate collagen and elastin and provide hyaluronic acid.” Black-Gupta adds that Ourself makes “designer peptides,” meaning bio-engineered versions of amino acids, to enhance its effect on the skin. “We don’t just go to the peptide mall and buy them,” she says. “We are able to optimize their size and activity for their potency.” Intides™ are encapsulated during formulation and transported into the skin by a multiphasic vesicle delivery system that allows them to target specific areas, addressing problems at their source. It’s what the brand calls “subtopical” delivery, a unique system that allows ingredient molecules to penetrate deeper below the skin’s surface to rebuild and transform themselves.

Last but not least about its name, Ourself actually has its own pharmaceutical grade manufacturing and supply chain responsible for its products. “We were able to find drug companies, but they didn’t understand the cosmetic space, and cosmetics certainly doesn’t understand the drug space,” Black-Gupta told Bustle. “And so we thought: we understand both, so we’ll do it ourselves.” And that’s what they did.

The range includes products that address three main concerns: hyperpigmentation, lightening and hydration. There are two hydrating lip treatments, including Lip Filler, a plumping formula with hyaluronic acid that increases the volume of your lips; two dark spot treatments – one of which is a peel – that work to reduce hyperpigmentation; a brightening peel that uses 54% glycolic acid to smooth the appearance of fine lines and pores; a broad-spectrum, mineral-based sunscreen packed with skin-firming Intides; and Daily Renewal Cream, a repairing facial moisturizer. All are available now on the brand’s website.

If the science behind its lab-engineered ingredients is any indication, these topicals just might give the world of injectables a run for their money.

We only include products that have been independently selected by Bustle’s editorial team. However, we may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article.

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