This skin-brightening moisturizer has a lightweight texture suitable for normal to slightly dry skin, but its jar packaging misses the mark for keeping the one significant brown spot–improving ingredient this contains stable during use. This product contains ascorbyl glucoside, a form of vitamin C that shows up in many products claiming to correct dark spots. There’s some good research behind this ingredient’s efficacy, but like all forms of vitamin C, it degrades and loses effectiveness when routinely exposed to light and air—which is exactly what happens when you opt for jar packaging (see More Info for further details).
Biotherm claims they use three active ingredients to fight against pigmentation changes, but that really isn’t the case. Only the form of vitamin C mentioned above has published research proving its worth for lightening discolorations. There is some information about Palmaria palmata, a type of algae, playing a role in controlling the pathway that causes melanin (skin pigment) formation, but there’s so little to go on it’s mostly speculation that this would work on intact skin; plus, concentration protocols have not been established and this product contains only a minute amount.
What this product does have is a shockingly ordinary formula that makes its price that much harder to accept. As with most Biotherm products, it contains fragrance ingredients known to cause irritation, and it lacks the state-of-the-art anti-aging ingredients all skin types need to look and act younger.
One more point, Biotherm’s claims and advertised ingredients would lead you to believe their products are all about natural formulations, and that is absolutely not the case. These products are steeped in synthetics, some that are great for skin, but also some that are definitely problematic.
- Lightweight, silky texture.
- Jar packaging won’t keep the key skin-lightening ingredient stable during use.
- Does not contain three active ingredients to fight dark spots as claimed.
- Contains fragrance ingredients known to cause irritation.
The fact that this product is packaged in a jar means the beneficial ingredients won't remain stable once it is opened. All plant extracts, vitamins, antioxidants, and 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. Jars also are unsanitary because you’re dipping your fingers into them with each use, adding bacteria, which further deteriorate the beneficial ingredients (Sources: Free Radical Biology and Medicine, September 2007, pages 818–829; Ageing Research Reviews, December 2007, pages 271–288; Dermatologic Therapy, September-October 2007, pages 314–321; International Journal of Pharmaceutics, June 12, 2005, pages 197–203; Pharmaceutical Development and Technology, January 2002, pages 1–32; International Society for Horticultural Science, www.actahort.org/members/showpdf?booknrarnr=778_5; Beautypackaging.com, and www.beautypackaging.com/articles/2007/03/airless-packaging.php).
Irritation From Fragrance and Fragrant Oils
Daily use of products that contain a high amount of fragrance, whether the fragrant ingredients are synthetic or natural, causes chronic irritation that can damage healthy collagen production, lead to or worsen dryness, and impair your skin’s ability to heal. Fragrance-free is the best way to go for all skin types. If fragrance in your skin-care products is important to you, it should be a very low amount to minimize the risk to your skin (Sources: Inflammation Research, December 2008, pages 558–563; Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, June 2008, pages 124–135, and November-December 2000, pages 358–371; Journal of Investigative Dermatology, April 2008, pages 15–19; Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, March 2008, pages 78–82; Mechanisms of Ageing and Development, January 2007, pages 92–105; and British Journal of Dermatology, December 2005, pages S13–S22).