Closeup photo of skin barrier

Your skin’s job is to play defense

Our skin’s main job is to act like a barrier. Most of the time, that’s a really good thing. If our skin let things in easily, we wouldn’t even be able to take a shower without turning into a puddle and we would be a lot more susceptible to toxins or infections.

In medicine and beauty, skin’s efficacy as a barrier is double-edged sword though: the thing that makes the skin such a good gate keeper is the same thing that also makes most skin care relatively ineffective.

Most creams, serums and lotions are wiped or sweated away before they can ever absorb. Even worse, many large molecules in popular formulations have no way of getting into your skin; only really small molecules can actually get through the skin without a needle. To put this into context, collagen is actually 300 times larger than what can actually be absorbed by your skin via a topical.

Illustration of droplette molecules penetrating skin

Droplette Gets Skincare Into (Not Onto) Your Skin.

Droplette’s technology is unique: without using needles, our device gets molecules that are up to 10000 times larger than what can be topically absorbed (< 500 Daltons) into skin.

Droplette Device in Iris

Micro-Infusion. Macro-Results.Here’s the Proof.

After hundreds of tests in our labs and with independent academic partners, we’re confident that Droplette significantly improves delivery into skin versus topicals.

Plasmid Delivery into Skin

This lab image compares topical delivery versus Droplette delivery of a large (5 million daltons or mega-daltons) piece of DNA (plasmid) into a section of tissue.

We chose to use DNA because it tells us two thing:

  1. the depth of delivery
  2. whether the DNA is damaged by the delivery process

This particular plasmid codes for a protein that fluoresces green. When delivered through Droplette, the DNA gets into cells and glows green inside cells. This means that delivery through Droplette both gets deep into skin and doesn’t damage the DNA or the cells since they are able to perform a fairly complex biological function.

Hydration Test

Our first human volunteer study was done to assess how much water we can deliver into skin to hydrate it.

We showed that compared to topical delivery of water, using Droplette instead hydrated the skin up to 80% more and the effects could be seen over a 4-6 hour period, meaning that more water was getting in (80%) and it was staying in the skin longer (at least 3 more hours).

We also proved that the device is safe and did not cause any discomfort or damage to the skin.

Closeup photo of hydrated skin

Method: Administration of 50 µl of distilled water to the hand region continuously for 30 seconds with Droplette vs. 100 µl of distilled water via topical administration. Both regions (Droplette vs. topical administration regions) were blotted dry at 5 seconds post-administration. Hydration was assessed by visual inspection and the Corneometer CM825 device.

Results: At 24 hours, no discoloration or discomfort was reported in either group. Hydration was increased 58.7% on average when water was administered by Droplette, versus only 22.8% in the control (topical administered water) group.

No subjects reported any discomfort adverse effects within 24 hr follow-up, and described Droplette spray as feeling like a slightly cool mist.

Consumer Study

Consumer Study

With human users, recruiting volunteers for skin biopsies isn’t a real possibility; instead, we used before/after photos and metrics such as a wrinkle score.

Before/after photos are widely the industry standard, but lighting and camera angles can easily be manipulated to make after photos seem drastically better than the before photos. The same thing is true with measurement of wrinkle scores or skin sagging – these metrics are often scored visually by a technician and are not all that quantitiative.

Our core team comes from a highly technical background and it was important to us that our results were interpretable and accurate even despite the limitations of these types of read out. These were the internal requirements that we generated for our first study and we designed them for the maximal trust in our results:

Closeup photo of hydrated skin

The study was designed as follows:

Week 0:Baseline images & measurements. Send consumers home with 4 weeks worth of retinol formulation (in topical form). Have them apply it once every night and use with sunscreen.

Week 4:End topical part of the trial, come in for intermediate images & measurements. Start of 2 week wash out period.

Week 6:Send consumers home with Droplette device & 4 weeks worth of retinol formulation – now to be delivered through Droplette. Have them use the device once every night and use with sunscreen.

Week 10:End of Droplette part of trial, come in for final images and measurements.


First and foremost, we found that across the board when subjects consistently used the device as instructed (since the device is connected, we were able to tabulate usage on the back end) they saw dramatic improvements in skin texture, appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and skin firmness:

Before Droplette with visible wrinkles and fine lines.
After Droplette with visible reduction of wrinkles and fine lines.

Subject 35: Female, Asian, 47 How we know the camera lighting is accurate: The birthmark on her forehead and her hair is the same color in both the before and the after shots. Effects seen after Droplette treatment: Significant reduction in appearance of forehead fine lines & wrinkles.

Before Droplette with fine lines and uneven skin tone
After Droplette with reduced appearance of fine lines and more even skin tone

Subject 14: Female, Caucasian, 48 How we know the camera lighting is accurate: The birthmark under her right eye is the same color in both the before and the after shots. Effects seen after Droplette treatment: Reduction in fine lines around eyes, even skin tone, less redness, smaller pores, lifted skin.

Droplette vs. Topical Administration

We were most surprised by how our subject’s skin responded to topical administration of the formulation:

Before Droplette subject with fine lines and wrinkles
Topically applied formulas showing increased fine lines and wrinkles
After Droplette treatment with reduced fine lines and wrinkles

Subject 22: Female, Caucasian, 44
How we know the camera lighting is accurate: Her eyebrows and eyelashes are the same color in all three pictures.

Effects seen after Droplette treatment: It looked like the topical actually dried her skin out and made the lines on her forehead appear worse compared to even the baseline. After consulting with out advisory board on it and thinking about this in the context of our previous results with Droplette’s hydrating effects, we were able to conclude that some of the ingredients in this formulation (such as the retinol) can indeed be drying. However, using Droplette we deliver both more ingredient as well as more water – meaning that the skin is better hydrated and is able to adapt to ingredients such as retinol faster.