Anti-ageing skincare: the best products made with DNA repair enzymes

·9-min read
Could DNA repair enzymes be the secret weapon we need in the war on wrinkles? (Shutterstock / SvetlanaFedoseyev)
Could DNA repair enzymes be the secret weapon we need in the war on wrinkles? (Shutterstock / SvetlanaFedoseyev)

UV exposure, pollution and the natural ageing process are just a few factors that can lead to DNA damage. Signs of this impairment include sagging skin, pigmentation and even skin cancer.

Scientific studies show that antioxidants and sunscreen are simply not enough to repair this damage.

DNA repair enzymes occur naturally in the skin to repair sun damage, but these shorten as we get older, hence why brown spots and wrinkles start to appear at a certain age.

We spoke to Dr Thivi Maruthappu, Consultant Dermatologist at the Cadogan Clinic, about what exactly DNA repair enzymes are and how they work: "We all have DNA repair enzymes in our body, but as we age these deplete. DNA repair enzymes may be effective in skincare products by helping to repair damage caused by free radicals which are generated by environmental stressors including UV exposure, pollution and smoking.

This damage to the DNA can cause ageing of the skin including wrinkles, loss of elasticity, pigmentation, age spots and dry skin. Whilst sunscreen and antioxidants can help prevent damage and there is some early evidence that DNA repair enzymes in skincare could have an additional benefit.”

Are there any ingredients that heighten the effects of DNA repair enzymes?

“Antioxidants such as vitamin C, resveratrol and niacinamide can be beneficial as well as hyaluronic acid and retinol, depending on the quality of the skin and skin type. Ageing of the skin is multi-factorial and there is not a one-size fits all approach. It’s important to remember that we all have different skin types and therefore need to adapt a regime to our individual needs.”

What should we keep in mind when using DNA repair enzyme products?

“As with any new skincare regime or introduction of new products, they take time to work and you shouldn’t expect results overnight. If experiencing any side effects or sensitivities, it’s important to cease using the product and consult with your dermatologist.”

Esther Fieldgrass, Founder of EF Medispa & EF SKIN, highlights the importance that DNA repair enzymes can play in keeping skin looking youthful: “Or skin is our largest organ and its main function is the protection from harmful outside stressors. Environmental factors such as UV and pollution increase the levels of oxidative stress in our skin leading to the formation of lines and wrinkles as well as pigmentation.

“In addition, our collagen production slows down as we get older and important enzyme functions are disrupted, all leading to skin aging. In order to help our skin to function better, we can use ingredients like marine DNA to stimulate cellular communication. By protecting us from the damaging effects of oxidative stress and improving cell to cell signalling for collagen synthesis, we can repair our skin as well as shield it in the future.”

We’ve rounded up the best DNA repair enzyme products.

Priori DNA Intense Recovery Cream

Priori Skincare is one of the most well known brands around when it comes to DNA-infused skincare and offers a whole range of science-backed products designed specifically to not only ward off the signs of ageing but also to tackle them head-on at the same time.

The brand’s DNA Intense Recovery Cream is maybe the most supercharged of the bunch, an effective multi-tasking skin booster that digs in deep to repair from within. With high-powered DNA repair enzymes to restore and reverse skin damage at a cellular level and a gentle, supple texture, it’s buttery soft to apply and feels just as luxurious as its price point suggests.

Other key ingredients? Hyaluronic acid and vitamins C and E to stimulate collagen production.

Buy now £89.00, Strawberry Net

Annemarie Borlind Naturepair Detox & DNA Repair Fluid

Annemarie Borlind’s Naturepair Detox & DNA Repair Fluid tackles a breakdown of proteins in the skin’s layers and acts the same way as a super-powered facial.

This luxe product is best for stressed skin that requires a little extra regeneration: think of it as an extra helping hand for your daily skincare routine.

Bringing together Proteolea (the brand’s detoxifying ingredient) and Celligent (a DNA Repair complex), it’s designed to provide intensive nourishment and support the skin’s natural protection against UV-induced stress. Better yet, it’s totally vegan and free of mineral oil derivatives.

Buy now £53.50, Strawberry Net

Neova DNA Total Repair

Neova is another popular choice and the brand’s DNA Total Repair is one of the best options for tackling skin repair from all angles. While it’s a little pricier than other options out there, a little goes a long way. And, once you’ve witnessed the powerful effects from this particular serum, you’ll stop thinking about its price tag.

The Total Repair serum features three different pure DNA repair enzymes and a super antioxidant complex, which promises to not only protect skin from outside interactions but repairs already damaged skin from the inside. Expect to see visible improvements in just a few weeks.

Buy now £88.00, Neova

Oskia CityLife Booster

Choose Oskia’s CityLife Booster for a little extra DNA-infused help on those days when you’ll be amongst a lot of pollution. A great add-on product designed for those who live in cities or spend a lot of time outdoors in polluted areas, it’s a high-powered serum that protects similarly to how we imagine a sheet of armour covering your face would.

Utilising ultra-advanced technology, including self-regenerating EUK 134 that turns skin-harming free radicals into water and DNA-protecting O3 Yeast Lysate, it’s designed to be paired with almost any other skincare product (moisturiser, serum, SPF) to seamlessly fit into your existing routine.

Buy now £113.00, Cult Beauty

Medik8 Advanced Day Ultimate Protect SPF50+

The majority of DNA repair-based products are SPFs or other skin barriers, which makes sense when you consider their purpose and intention.

Medik8’s Advanced Day Ultimate Protect SPF50+ is one of the most intensive options out there and is perfect for anyone looking to bolster their current skincare routine with a heavy dose of impressive ingredients.

Suitable for sensitive skin yet wholly powerful nonetheless, this day cream is fortified with SPF50+ PA++++ to help guard your skin from harmful UVA/UVB rays, blue light, infrared light, glycation and pollution. The coolest part? Its invisible 360° environmental shield, which helps to protect your skin from damaging external aggressors.

Buy now £59.00, lookfantastic

Theraderm DNA Rejuvenation Cream

The only thing better than DNA-repair enzyme products is a DNA-repair enzyme product boosted with antioxidants. Enter: Theraderm’s DNA Rejuvenation Cream. A rich, silky, moisturising cream, it uses advanced silk technology infused with marine DNA and anhydrous vitamin C to encourage tissue rebuilding and skin brightening.

Great if you struggle with dry skin and need a little extra moisturising at the same time, this day cream is intense enough to use day or night without weighing your skin down. If you struggle with hyperpigmentation, this is an ideal choice.

Buy now £105.00, EF Skin

Lancaster Total Age Correction Amplified Anti-Ageing Rich Day Cream

Lancaster Beauty’s Total Age Correction Amplified Anti-Ageing Rich Day Cream is a product that deserves to be shouted about. One of the best choices for quick results, this cream adds a soft glow to your skin, while reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and helping to repair from the inside out, too.

While it does include an SPF rating of 15, you’d probably want to pair this product with a stronger sun cream for best results. But where it does excel is with its all-rounded approach. Tackling skin issues from both sides of the coin, it fuses together DNA repair benefits alongside a retinol-enriched complex.

Buy now £46.60, lookfantastic

Comfort Zone Sun Soul Milk Body Spray

You may find that most DNA repair products are a little richer than your standard skincare line. If you’re looking for something a little lighter, try Comfort Zone’s Sun Soul Milk Body Spray. Sure, it’s not quite as intense as some of the other products on the list. But if you’re looking to expand on your skincare routine in your 20s or you’re someone without much visible damage, this is a great choice for keeping skin happy in advance.

Designed to give your skin essential daily protection from the damaging effects of UV exposure, it’s made up of a biomimetic DNA-defence peptide to balance and invigorate the skin with a milky texture to ensure hydration. Spritz as a final touch after applying SPF for best results.

Buy now £12.10, lookfantastic

Pevonia Power Repair Age Correction Intensifier

Pevonia’s Power Repair Age Correction Intensifier is something of a revolutionary firming and repairing treatment, loved for its ability to, as its name suggests, intensely repair skin from within. It’s one of the products from the brand’s Power Repair line and is widely regarded as one of the best products to repair skin from all angles.

Its formula features plant-derived peptides and polysaccharides to combat visible signs of ageing at a cellular level, while its Jasmine Oil moisturises and its Sorghum improves texture and enhances firmness. Apply a few drops to your face and neck before bed and you should see noticeable results after a few weeks.

Buy now £69.50, Strawberry Net

Katherine Daniels Daily DNA Defence SPF30

Katherine Daniels’ Daily DNA Defence SPF30 is a multi-award winning sunscreen that’s perfect for providing sun protection and healing skin from within simultaneously. This ultra-light fluid quickly transforms into an invisible veil of advanced photo-ageing technology, utilising both DNA defence and repair enzymes to kick start your natural repair mechanisms.

The brand claims your DNA repair increases by 40 per cent in 30 minutes, which is around 100 times faster than your skin could start to repair itself. If you spend a lot of time in the sunshine and aren’t quite ready to say hello to the shade, this is an essential purchase.

Buy now £59.00, Katherine Daniels Cosmetics


DNA repair enzymes might be a newer addition to the skincare market but there are already plenty of options around. Struggling to choose just one? We'd pick Priori DNA Intense Recovery Cream: a great all-rounder that's renowned for its skin-loving benefits.