Skin Vitality: Nº1 De Chanel’s Next-Gen Approach To Anti-Ageing

by Gordon Ng  /   May 22, 2022

Nº1 de Chanel is Chanel’s boldest and most innovative beauty collection in years. Underpinning it is a fundamentally different and new perspective to anti-ageing: one with a holistic focus on the vitality of skin cells. In collaboration with the French luxury brand, FEMALE explores how this line earned its “beauty ahead of time” slogan.

It’s not often that you find a new perspective on anti-ageing skincare. But that’s what Chanel has achieved with its latest Nº1 De Chanel collection. The new generation skincare and beauty line is based on nearly a decade’s research into the field that the brand conducted with the Viennese University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences’ department of Biotechnology and Ageing.

READ MORE: Nº1 De Chanel Is Primed To Be Our New Skincare And Beauty First Love

Instead of focusing on specific skin concerns like hydration and lifting, Chanel developed Nº1 with a holistic and pre-emptive approach to skin vitality. The idea is that beautiful skin arises from skin cells that are working at full capacity. The foundation of this approach is the cutting-edge field of skincare science known as senescence.

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Korean actress Jung Hoyeon is one of the Nº1 De Chanel collection’s campaign models.


Senescence is a process of how cells deteriorate and age. It happens in three steps: In the first, skin cells stop dividing without dying off. In the second, these senescent cells (nicknamed zombie cells) start to spread and disrupt the function of neighbouring healthy cells. Lastly, senescence fully sets in when these zombie cells accumulate – making up as much as 50 per cent of one’s skin cells. This results in classic signs of ageing like dullness, wrinkles and reduced elasticity.

It’s a natural process of ageing, albeit one that can be induced by external factors such as stress, lack of sleep, ultraviolet rays and pollution.

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Nº1 De Chanel is targeted at younger users, with formulas and key ingredients that boast revitalising properties that work on the overall health of one’s skin.


Chanel thus developed the Nº1 line to address senescence in its first stage when skin cells begin to deteriorate. The brand started its research in 2012, building 2D and 3D models of senescence cycles to test numerous ingredients on.

READ MORE: 5 Ways Chanel Beauty Is A Pro In Sustainable And Green Beauty Practices

The goal was to find active ingredients that are most effective at supporting the vitality and health of skin cells. This essentially limits skin cells’ entry into senescence, keeping them healthy for a longer period of time. The winner of this search was the red camellia, named ‘The Czar’, which has become the heart of the Nº1 De Chanel collection.

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The red ‘Czar’ camellia is the hero ingredient in the Nº1 De Chanel beauty line. The choice of this ingredient is the result of large scale camellia cultivation and research in open sky labs that the brand has set up around the world including Gaujacq in France and Costa Rica.


Part of the red ‘Czar’ camellia’s effectiveness can be attributed to the very nature of the plant’s life cycle. Chanel took inspiration from the flower’s unique ability to condense its energy and nutrients in order to bloom in winter. The brand found that the vitality of this flower translated into antioxidant-rich skincare ingredients that effectively support skin vitality and health.

READ MORE: How The Red Camellia Became The Heart Of Nº1 De Chanel

These active skincare ingredients include red camellia extracts and oils, and fresh camellia water. And Chanel has more than paid lip service to its hero ingredient: the formulas of every product in the Nº1 De Chanel line include high percentages of one or more of these camellia-derived active ingredients.

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Camellia derivatives make up 70 per cent of the Nº1 De Chanel Red Camellia Revitalising Cream’s formula. The key ingredient even features in the bioplastic lid of the cream which incorporates camellia seed shells.

The benefits that Nº1 De Chanel products promise are easy to appreciate. Revitalised, healthy skin that looks more radiant, less visible pores and wrinkles, and improved elasticity. Under the hood, though, is a cutting-edge perspective on anti-ageing that underscores a holistic and modern vision of skincare. How’s that for going for number one?

Nº1 De Chanel is available at all Chanel Beauty boutiques and counters, and its online store. To sample the products, head to this page.