04.01.2015
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Moisture Bound Rejuvenating Serum
Rating
1.7 fl. oz. for $100
Last Updated:04.01.2015
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:Yes
Review Overview

Expensive doesn't mean better in the world of skin care and this serum proves that point beautifully. Although the formula contains several skin-"rejuvenating" anti-aging ingredients, they're of little benefit to your skin because of the amount of alcohol that's present. Listed as the second ingredient, the alcohol in this serum causes significant irritation and free-radical damage that leads to collagen breakdown, which makes your skin look older, not younger.

AmorePacific maintains this is a highly concentrated serum that delivers bamboo juice to your skin for youthful results, but there isn't anything miraculous about bamboo juice when it comes to anti-aging, or even moisturizing, skin (see More Info below for an explanation about bamboo). Also see our list of Best Serums for far better formulated and far less pricey options.

Pros:
  • Contains an impressive mix of antioxidants and other anti-aging ingredients.
Cons:
  • Expensive.
  • Contains alcohol, which causes free-radical damage and collagen breakdown.
  • Despite the company's claims, there is no proof bamboo sap improves skin’s appearance.

More Info:

The first ingredient in this moisturizer is a type of bamboo water. Just like aloe water was for a time supposed to be the answer to your skin-care problems, AmorePacific now wants you to believe bamboo water is the answer. It isn't. Bamboo has a good marketing spin, though, because it has the capacity to transport large amounts of water between its various parts. But, bamboo's ability to transport water as a living plant has nothing to do with what it can do when it is dead and put into a skin-care product. It simply doesn't have any special hydrating benefit for skin.

Claims

This concentrated serum includes Self-transforming Technology™ to promote the penetration of highly concentrated bamboo sap. The combination of this advanced delivery system and bamboo sap offers extraordinary properties that regenerate fresh, new skin while intensifying the moisturizing benefits of the complete AmorePacific routine of Moisture Bound Rejuvenating products.

Ingredients

Phyllostachis Bambusoides Juice, Alcohol, Glycerin, Propanediol, Butylene Glycol, Squalane, PEG/PPG-17/6 Copolymer, Cyclopentasiloxane, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Pentaerythrityl Tetraethylhexanoate, Dimethicone, Niacinamide, Acetyl Glucosamine, Betaine, Opuntia Coccinellifera Fruit Extract, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Seed Extract, Nelumbo Nucifera Flower Extract, Hydrolyzed Phyllostachis Bambusoides, Hydrolyzed Camellia Sinensis Leaf, Theanine, Epigallocatechin Gallate, Kaempferol, Camellia Sinensis Flower Extract, Natto Gum, Caffeine, Beta-Glucan, Sodium Hyaluronate, Cyclohexasiloxane, Methyl Gluceth-20, PCA Dimethicone, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Tocopherol, Phytantriol, C12-16 Alcohols, Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ether Dimethyl Silane, Hydroxypropyl Starch Phosphate, Stearyl Behenate, Dimethiconol, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Polysorbate 20, Carbomer, Palmitic Acid, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Limnanthes Alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil, Polyglyceryl-3 Methylglucose Distearate, Mannan, PEG-15 Pentaerythrityl Tetra(Laureth-6 Carboxylate), Poloxamer 407, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/VP Copolymer, Tromethamine, Disodium EDTA, Ethylhexylglycerin, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance

Brand Overview

AmorePacific At-A-Glance

Strengths: A very good lip balm; antioxidant-rich facial oil.

Weaknesses: Some products use jar packaging, which weakens the stability of beneficial ingredients; toner with plant irritants; some formulas contain high amounts of skin-ravaging alcohol.

AmorePacific is a popular South Korean cosmetics line established in 1945, whose skincare products made their way to U.S. Sephora stores in 2009. At its core, AmorePacific claims to be all about “beauty secrets found in nature.” Some of those highly touted ingredients like antioxidant EGCG (epigallocatechin-3-gallate, a polyphenol found in green tea) really are great for skin, whereas others (like bamboo sap and red ginseng) don’t have solid research backing their benefits for skin—but at least they’re not hurting it.

Either way, good skincare comes down to the formula as a whole, not just a “superstar” ingredient here or there, so how does AmorePacific rank in that regard? Like many brands, it varies product by product. Some products in the AmorePacific line offer a broad range of plant-based antioxidants and various skin-beneficial ingredients, while other formulas fall into the lackluster category due to overly basic formulas that can’t make good on their anti-aging claims.

Many of the products contain potentially irritating fragrance (which is never good news, particularly for sensitive skin), and worse yet, a handful are plagued by high concentrations of skin-ravaging alcohol which can increase inflammation in skin, provoke breakouts, and accelerate the signs of aging in the long term. In short, these can leave skin worse for the wear when they’re part of your daily skincare routine.

Well also have to point out that the use of jar packaging for some of the products is an ill-fated choice. Plant extracts, vitamins, antioxidants, and most other state-of-the-art ingredients break down in the presence of air, so once a jar is opened and lets the air in, these important ingredients begin to deteriorate. Not only that, but dipping your fingers into them can add bacteria, which further deteriorates beneficial ingredients. That’s disappointing at any price point, but since some of these products cost between $100-$450, that’s a major waste of money.

Standing back and looking at specific products, even though there are a few good options, the prices aren’t justified and you can find better products for far less in each category. However, if you choose to shop this line and are OK with spending more than necessary, at least you’ll know from our reviews which products are worthy of a purchase.

For more information about AmorePacific, visit us.amorepacific.com.

Note: The AmorePacific products reviewed on Beautypedia include those that are currently sold at Sephora in the U.S. The company offers an even pricier range of products at upscale department stores such as Neiman Marcus. We may review those in the future; for now, the demand from our readers simply isn’t there—likely because many of them have gotten the message that in the world of skincare, hyper-expensive doesn’t mean better products or better results!

About the Experts

The new Beautypedia Team proudly and unequivocally maintains the commitment to help you find the best products possible for your skin. We do this by relentlessly pursuing and relying on published scientific research so you will have unbiased information on what works and what doesn't-and the sneaky ways you could be making your skin worse, not better!


The Beautypedia Team reviews all products using the same research, criteria, and objectivity, whether the product being reviewed is from Paula's Choice or another brand.

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