This water-based serum's appearance and texture will remind you of a lightweight lotion rather than a typical serum. It's an average option suitable for normal to oily skin, but please know your skin deserves better (and you can get far better serums for a lower price)!
The claim that this serum smoothes skin's texture is likely a connection to the sugar and citrus extracts it contains. Although some cosmetics companies try to convince consumers these ingredients are a natural alternative to the alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) exfoliants glycolic and lactic acid, they are not. Sugar maple and orange extract don't exfoliate skin like lactic or glycolic acids, and there's no research proving otherwise.
This lightweight serum will make skin feel smooth, but also a bit sticky; it's just not the most elegant texture around. As for anti-aging benefits, this contains only a few truly beneficial ingredients. Regrettably, most of the helpful ingredients (like antioxidant vitamins) are present in tiny amounts, and the translucent bottle packaging means they'll break down if you leave this product exposed to natural light.
The Dead Sea minerals (primarily sodium; the Dead Sea is among the saltiest bodies of water on Earth) do not intensify this serum's "anti-wrinkling effect." If anything, the salt content can lead to dryness. Really, these minerals have nothing to do with anti-aging, but instead merely reinforce Ahava's natural marketing story.
Please see our list of Best Serums for several less expensive options with superior anti-aging benefits.
- Provides light hydration.
- Overpriced for what amounts to an average formula.
- The sugar and citrus extracts cannot exfoliate skin for smooth results.
- Texture and finish are not as elegant as those of many other serums.
- Most of the beneficial anti-aging ingredients are present in tiny amounts.
- Dead Sea minerals are not anti-aging in the least.
- Translucent bottle packaging demands storage away from direct light to prevent the antioxidants from breaking down.
The Dead Sea water in this product offers no special benefit for skin. If anything, because water from the Dead Sea is so salty and because it also contains sulfur along with other irritating minerals, it ends up being drying and irritating for all skin types. Soaking in Dead Sea water can have benefit for those with certain types of skin rashes, but there is no research showing it has benefit as a skin-care ingredient.
I use this light gel lotion to give my skin an incredible lift of vitality and lasting hydration. It’s enriched with skin-healthy Dead Sea minerals for strengthening the skin’s barrier and intensifying the anti-wrinkling effect.
Mineral Spring Water, Acer Saccharinum (Sugar Maple) Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Fruit Extract, Citrus Medica Limonum (Lemon) Fruit Extract, Saccharum Officinarum (Sugar Cane) Extract, Vaccinium Myrtillus (Bilberry) Leaf Extract, Water, Butylene Glycol, Ruscus Aculeatus Root (Butcherbroom) Extract, Myristyl Myristate, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, C 13-14 Isoparaffin, Laureth-7, Polyacrylamide, Propanediol (Corn-derived Glycol), Squalene (Phytosqualene), Maris Sal (Dead Sea Water), Centella Asiatica Extract, Glycerin, Steareth-2, Steareth-21, Aesculus Hippocastanum (Horse Chestnut) Seed Extract, Equisetum Arvense (Horsetail) Leaf Extract, Ceratonia Siliqua (Carob Bean) Gum, Caprylyl Glycol , Chlorphenesin, Phenoxyethanol, Diethylhexyl Adipate, Cetyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Polymethacrylate, Propylene Glycol, PVM/MA Copolymer, Hydroxypropyl Guar, Saccharide Isomerate, Allantoin, Dimethicone, Dimethiconol, Cetyl Hydroxyethylcellulose, Fragrance, Dunaliella Salina (Dead Sea Alga) Extract, Potassium Sorbate, PVP, Phoenix Dactylifera (Date) Fruit Extract, Alcohol, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Extract, BHA, Citric Acid, Propyl Gallate, Disodium Lauriminodipropionate Tocopheryl Phosphates, Lecithin, Beta-Sitosterol, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Hydrogenated Vegetable Glycerides Citrate, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Flower Extract, Retinyl(Vitamin A) Palmitate, Alpha Isomethyl Ionone, Benzyl Salicylate, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Citronellol, Geraniol, Hexyl Cinnamal, Limonene, Linalool
Ahava is the Hebrew word for love, and this group has adopted it for these skin-care products imported from Israel. Other than the endearing title, the point of difference for Ahava is that their products contain salts and minerals from the Dead Sea in Israel. So, you ask, is your skin going to love these products because they contain Dead Sea water? Supposedly, Cleopatra did, and, of course, she must have had skin to die for, or else Mark Antony wouldn't have risked everything for her. Is that a good enough reason to consider these products for your own skin-care routine? We hope not. Aside from the folklore, there is little truth behind the hype—why would anyone believe that Cleopatra knew any more about skin care than she did about computers or cell phones—and skin care in this millennium is indeed akin to rocket science.
Keep in mind the Dead Sea in Israel is called "dead" because nothing can live in it (technically, there are some bacteria and fungi that can). There are many environmental factors that contribute to making the Dead Sea one of the saltiest lakes in the world, but we won't get into that discussion. A comparison should give you an idea of just how salty it is. The seawater in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans has a salt content of 3–4%, while the Dead Sea has a salt content of 32%, as well as a large concentration of minerals such as sulfur, magnesium, calcium, bromide, and potassium. If you haven't been to the Dead Sea, we can tell you the aroma of the sulfur in the water is overwhelming. It is hard to imagine that anything so noxious would be considered a desirable beauty treatment.
Despite the smell and the high mineral content, there are no clinical studies or research showing that Dead Sea minerals have any effect on wrinkles, discolorations, sagging skin, or acne. There are, however, several studies demonstrating that Dead Sea minerals can have a positive effect on psoriatic skin, a practice known as climatotherapy (Sources: International Journal of Dermatology, October 2007, pages 1087–1091; Journal of Dermatological Treatment, May-June 2005, pages 308–313; and Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, September 2003, pages 451–457). Psoriasis is a skin condition characterized by rapidly dividing, overactive skin cells. How the Dead Sea minerals and salts affect psoriasis is still being debated. One of the more popular theories is that the mineral content of the water slows down the out-of-control cell division. Some research indicates that the benefit is cumulative and that the results can last for up to five months. Immersing psoriasis-afflicted skin in Dead Sea minerals is also a treatment that is better-tolerated than many conventional medical options.
Studies by the Department of Medicine and Department of Epidemiology and Dermatology at the Soroka Medical Center of Kupat-Holim in Israel and Ben-Gurion University of the Negev on psoriasis and other skin rashes noted that "improvement [in skin] was found when patients soaked in two pounds/one kilo for three baths per week, for a period of six weeks." Now that's a lot of Dead Sea water, and certainly not the amount you would get by using these products. Most important, however, if you are looking for Dead Sea water to heal wrinkles, think again, because wrinkles are completely unrelated to psoriasis or other skin rashes.
Even if Dead Sea salts could benefit normal skin in some way, the amount you'll find in the Ahava products and products from other Dead Sea–oriented lines are infinitesimally small in comparison with the amounts used in the published studies, and your skin deserves so much more than these one-note products can deliver. For more information about Ahava, call (800) 366-7254 or visit www.ahavaus.com.