Retrinal H.A.F. Firming Gel
0.5 fl. oz. for $46
Last Updated:05.21.2014
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:Yes
Review Overview

This alleged skin-firming product has a lotion rather than gel texture, and its ordinary, water and wax formula does not add up to firming benefits in any way shape or form. One of the last ingredients listed is retinal. Not to be confused with retinol, retinal is a derivative of vitamin A, also known as retinaldehyde. Amounts of 0.05% and above have been shown to build collagen fibers after skin samples were exposed to UV light, but that was in controlled laboratory settings on human skin samples—and the amount of retinaldehyde in this product is most likely less than 0.05%, so we wouldn’t count on similar results with daily use of this product (Source: Dermatology, Supplement, 1999, pages 43–48). This remains an OK moisturizer for normal to dry skin, nothing more.


Clinically proven effective to reduce the visible signs of aging such as deep lines, wrinkles and loss of firmness. You will notice an instant smoothing effect upon use. In just days, the appearance of deep lines and wrinkles will be minimized, leaving your skin clear and radiant. Eulage Firming Gel is non - oily and easy to use. It is peach tinted and slightly fragranced.


Water, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Esters, Caprylic/Capric Triglycerides, Ceteareth-20, Glycol Montanate, Cyclomethicone, Ceteareth-33, Sodium Hyaluronate, Acrylates Copolymer, BHT, Butylparaben, Carbomer, Fragrance, Phenoxyethanol, Polymethyl Methacrylate, Propylparaben, Red 33, Retinal, Triethanolamine

Brand Overview

Eau Thermale Avene At-a-Glance

Strengths: Some excellent cleansers; well-formulated sunscreens; moisturizers that help to treat very dry, fragile skin; praiseworthy lip balms.

Weaknesses: Can be on the pricey side.

Eau Thermale Avene’s most prominent claim to fame is the thermal spring water in its products, which the brand maintains is curative due to both historical and scientific evidence. Unfortunately, there isn’t much evidence that we could locate that was in the form of published, peer-reviewed research. Without the research, thermal water is ultimately more about marketing than fact—however, the good news is whatever the factualness of their claims about the ingredient, at least thermal water isn’t going to harm your skin in any way.

Thermal water aside, what is clear is that Avene’s goal is to provide formulas for those who battle sensitive skin concerns. With that in mind, we can say there are quite a few successes among the brand’s range of offerings. There are also a few products we saw as missteps for reasons noted in their respective reviews.

Overall, Eau Thermale Avene’s more praiseworthy qualities is the range of options provided for those that have exceptionally sensitive skin, i.e. who may have been unable to tolerate more advanced anti-aging formulas. While we would have liked to see more in the way of complexity of anti-aging formulas from Avene (and fewer claims about thermal water), the particular direction the brand takes towards skincare is one that has its audience.

For more information about Eau Thermale Avene, call (866) 412-8363 or visit www.aveneusa.com.

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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