11.26.2014
10
416
Repairwear Laser Focus Smooths, Restores, Corrects
Rating
1 fl. oz. for $47.50
Category:Skin Care > Serums > Serums
Last Updated:11.26.2014
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:Yes
Review Overview

In fall of 2013, Clinique launched an allegedly new and improved version of this serum, now with “twice the smoothing” as before. Don’t take that claim to mean smoother skin as if you had a laser or other in-office procedure done; they mean smooth as in cosmetically smooth, which is something almost every serum can deliver. And despite its second outing, this serum still isn’t as impressive as those that earned our top rating.

The ingredient list for this reformulated serum didn’t change in a manner that altered its texture or finish, and it remains suitable for all skin types. Yes, this does make skin feel smoother than the previous version, but “twice as smooth” is pushing it. We suspect most people who used the previous version won’t notice a major improvement in how their skin looks or feels with the latest version. It’s more status quo than major innovation.

This remains another well-formulated, fragrance-free serum that will make your skin (and wrinkles) softer and smoother, just like countless other well-formulated options.

Regarding the "laser focus" part of the name, this doesn’t have anything to do with how real lasers improve skin. Not a single ingredient (or mix of ingredients) in this or any other serum is capable of even vaguely creating the results a medically-supervised laser treatment can provide.

Getting back to the formula, what did change was the removal of several ingredients with a small amount of research proving they help improve uneven skin tone and stimulate collagen. Why Clinique removed these ingredients is a mystery (it’s possible the complex was discontinued by the manufacturer) but they replaced those ingredients with other good anti-aging ingredients not in the previous version, so it’s a wash.

For the best of both worlds, a smart approach to anti-aging is to pair a state-of-the-art skin-care routine with the cosmetic corrective procedures that are appropriate for addressing the concerns you have about how your skin is aging.

Note: This serum is dispensed via a dropper applicator. Although not the ideal method to dispense a serum that contains light- and air-sensitive ingredients, sometimes this type of packaging is necessary due to formulary requirements. When that’s the case, the goal is to keep the bottle opening as small as possible, the bottle should be opaque or specially coated to protect the contents from light, and you should use the serum up within three months of opening.

Note Two: Clinique also offers this serum in a 1.7-ounce size for $73 and a 3.4-ounce size for $132.

Claims

Potent serum gives every skin a second chance against lines, wrinkles, sun damage. In 4 weeks, see obvious reduction in lines, wrinkles, improved texture. At 12 weeks, the visible wrinkle-reducing power is remarkably close to a dermalogical laser procedure. 63%, to be exact

Ingredients

Water, Dimethicone, Butylene Glycol, Polysorbate 20, Methyl Trimethicone, Vinyl Dimethicone/Methicone Silsesquioxane Crosspolymer, Polysorbate 20, Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ether Dimethyl Silane, Glycerin, Silica, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Lauryl PEG-9 Polydimethylsiloxyethyl Dimethicone, Methyl Gluceth-20, Polysilicone-11, Sigesbeckia Orientalis (St. Paul's Wort) Extract, Salvia Sclarea (Clary) Extract, Acetyl Glucosamine, Plankton Extract, Whey Protein, Sea Whip Extract, Arabidopsis Thaliana Extract, Caffeine, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Protein, Anthemis Nobilis (Chamomile), Sodium Hyaluronate, Micrococcus Lysate, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Ergothioneine, Aminopropyl Ascorbyl Phosphate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Caprylyl Glycol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Cholesterol, Glyceryl Polymethacrylate, Sodium Hydroxide, Lecithin, Carbomer, PEG-8, Xanthan Gum, Citric Acid, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol

Brand Overview

Clinique At-A-Glance

Strengths: One of the best selections of state-of-the-art moisturizers and serums loaded with ingredients that research has shown are of great benefit to skin; excellent sunscreens; several Redness Solutions products excel; an outstanding benzoyl peroxide product; good selection of self-tanning products; some very good cleansers and eye makeup removers; some unique mattifying products; a large and wholly impressive selection of foundations, many with reliable sun protection (and shades for darker skin tones); good concealers; some remarkable mascaras; much-improved eyeshadows; loose powder; blush products; some brilliant lipsticks and lip gloss; gel eyeliner; priced lower than most competing department-store lines.

Weaknesses: The three-step skincare routine, because of the bar soaps and irritant-laden clarifying lotions; jar packaging downgrades several otherwise top-notch moisturizers; incomplete routines for those prone to acne; skin-lightening products with either unproven or insufficient levels of lightening agents.

Estee Lauder-owned Clinique's tremendous success (the company's products are sold in over 13,000 department stores and in 110 countries) reshaped the way cosmetics lines identified themselves, sending the concept of line loyalty out to pasture. Today, cosmetics companies expand their market either by buying already established companies or by creating new ones, and Lauder has been adept at doing both. Of course, cosmetics companies keep this multiple-personality identity hidden from the consumer. If the general buying public realized that these apparently different companies were so intertwined with each other, how could they flaunt their independence and claim that their unparalleled formulations are secret or the best? It's hard to think Lauder (or any company) would, even if they could, keep secrets from one branch separate from the others. And as evidenced by the formulary similarities between brands, they don't!

The niche Clinique built launched the concept of cosmetics being "allergy-tested," "hypoallergenic," "100% fragrance-free," and "dermatologist tested." Of those marketing claims the only one with significance is "100% fragrance-free," which, for the most part, Clinique maintains (although it does add some fragrant extracts to a few products). Regarding allergy testing, unless you can see the results, what difference does it make if a product makes that claim? What if the test showed 20% of the women who used it had a sensitizing reaction, dryness, or irritation? Would Clinique highlight this, or is it just easier to default to the generic allergy-tested claim and leave such details out, figuring consumers won't ask for more? 

Moreover, "hypoallergenic" is a term not regulated by the FDA, so any product can use the word without having to substantiate the claim. "Dermatologist tested" is also bogus, because without published test results the term can easily mean nothing more than that a dermatologist picked up the product, looked at the container, and said "This looks good." And what about the dermatologists on Clinique's payroll? How do we know they're not the ones involved in testing, rather than sending the products out for independent, impartial evaluation (though how impartial can any study be that's paid for by the company making the product)?

Clinique declined any participation for this site, which included refusing to send us copies of the allergy studies they maintain have been performed for every product they sell. We find their unwillingness to help odd because, for the most part, we genuinely like most of their products. In fact, more than any other department-store line except Estee Lauder, Clinique is leading the way with cutting-edge, state-of-the-art moisturizers and serums, plus some formidable makeup. They also have their act together for sunscreens and have expanded their decades-old three-step skin-care routine to include water-soluble cleansers instead of bar soap. They also now have a second "Dramatically Different" moisturizer that's well-suited for those with normal to oily skin and FINALLY reformulated their longstanding water-and-wax yellow lotion.

The Clinique consultants, dressed in medical-looking white lab coats (Clinique's image in that sense was ahead of the times given today's plethora of doctor-designed skin-care lines), do their best to speak intelligently about skin-care routines, but for the most part they're trained to sell the products rather than to provide information about what substantiated research has shown about the skin's needs to look and feel its best.

The good news for you is that the chemists behind Clinique's arsenal of products have been keeping up on this exciting information, and formulating superior products in response. We wouldn't blindly and solely bank on Clinique as your skin-care solution, but more than ever what they offer is, despite some far-out claims and problematic products, what epitomizes advanced skin care for all ages. Shop carefully and you'll leave confident that you are purchasing products with solid science, not just marketing hype, behind them.

Turning to makeup, Clinique continues to offer a vast palette of colors and textures, especially in their huge and imposing selection of foundations, many of which feature effective sunscreens. In fact, this category has become the most compelling reason to shop Clinique's makeup collection. Without a doubt the numerous formulas offer something for every skin type and almost every skin color. The shade selection has improved considerably, with more neutrals and a broader range than ever before. You still need to use caution and watch out for peach-toned duds, but for the most part finding a natural-looking match shouldn't be a frustrating experience, and the counter personnel are happy to provide samples.

Although the foundation and powder shades take darker skin tones into account, the blush, eye pencil, and most of the lipstick shades do not. Perhaps that will change in the future, as Clinique beautifully updated their eyeshadow collection with ultra-smooth textures and deeper colors that show up on darker skin.

Compliments are also due for Clinique's updated makeup tester units. They are well-organized, labeled with product name and price, and easily accessible without a salesperson's help. And speaking of salespeople, most of the Clinique consultants we encounter go above and beyond to provide assistance and to answer any questions we had (even if we didn't always agree with their responses). Those white lab coats don't mean medical expertise, but we'll take outstanding customer service over pseudoscience any day!

The bottom line is that, despite a few shortcomings, Clinique is one of the most comprehensive (and comparably affordable) department-store makeup lines, and it is completely understandable why they enjoy such broad appeal.

Note: Clinique is categorized as one that tests on animals because their products are sold in China. Although Clinique does not conduct animal testing for their products sold elsewhere, the Chinese government requires imported cosmetics be tested on animals, so foreign companies retailing there must comply. This requirement is why some brand’s state that they don’t test on animals “unless required by law”. Animal rights organizations consider cosmetic companies retailed in China to be brands that test on animals, and so does the Beautypedia Team.

For more information about Clinique, call (800) 419-4041 or visit www.clinique.com

About the Experts

The Beautypedia Team proudly and unequivocally maintains the commitment that Paula Begoun, founder of Beautypedia and Paula's Choice Skincare made over 30 years ago-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.

Member Comments
Summary of Member Comments
Results
Value
Recommend
WRITE A COMMENT
Sort by:
Page:
02.24.2015
I don't agree with Beautypedia

I LOVE this serum...much more so than any of Paula's Choice serums, and I love PC and many of her products. However, this one has that extra something in texture. I love it.

Recommend
Value
Results
Reviewed by
HOWARD D.
07.25.2014
My opinion has changed!

I recommend this product because I did see instant results with this serum. It gives a smooth finish. I just wish it had more key ingredients like the other Clinique serums. I don't like the packaging of this serum. I prefer a pump. But, it does come in a 3.4 0z. On the Clinique website now. I don't know for how long. I might stick with the new smart repair serum it's so gentle and I believe it has vitamin C.

Results
Value
Recommend
Reviewed by
Annette D.
05.07.2014
I'm a 47 year old male , I just servied stage 3 cancer

After my over2 year battle with cancer my skin looked bad aged tired, I heard about this product from my doctor!! And went and bought the laser repair and I love it! My skin looks so healthy again!! And my lines around my eyes are totally gone!! My skin is lifted and very firm!! Also I had old acne scars that are all smothed away in so happy. I will never stop using it no matter what the cost, I want to stay looking yung for a very long time!!

Value
Recommend
Results
Reviewed by
Brian Welwood
05.05.2014
repair wear laser focus

Save your money. I've been using this for 6 weeks and there is absolutely no change in my skin.

Recommend
Results
Value
Reviewed by
Michelle s
04.19.2014
Just okay

Received this as a free sample, it's just okay. Leaves skin a little smooth but I have used products that work much better than this one. I have used this am and pm and haven't noticed anything really great about it. Makeup application after using this serum is tricky, since it never seems to sink into skin foundation tends to "pill" a little bit. I waited a full hour before foundation application and I still end up with little foundation color dots.

Results
Value
Recommend
Reviewed by
Anonymous
03.29.2014
Disappointing!

I got this as a sample at Macy's. So I try not to complain when I get something for free. It smells a lot like like Estée Lauder's Advanded Night Repair. Which shouldn't be surprising since Estée Lauder owns Clinique. The Clinique has better ingredients in it. But advanced is more hydrating. I'll stick with my Olay regenerist micro-sculpting serum.I'm content with that.

Recommend
Results
Value
Reviewed by
AnnetteD.
02.14.2014
Still works

This is a great non-retinol serum. I cannot tolerate retinol on my skin, so this is perfect for me. It leaves my skin soft and smooth, which is what I was expecting. I know better than to expect "laser like" results, so I am happy with this serum.

Results
Recommend
Value
Reviewed by
Lauren S
08.12.2013
A New Formula and Name!

I just went to the Clinique website to order this serum, but it has been removed! I did a live chat with their website consultant. I was informed that this serum no longer exists! I was told that a new formula is coming which will contain a "gentle leave on exfoliant" and that it has been renamed. This is so bizarre because they aggressively promoted the old formula with HUGE promotion (2 free sample bottles for each customer) recently at Macy's here in Chicago. What is Clinique up to?

Recommend
Results
Value
Reviewed by
Carole
05.09.2013
A change of ingredients

I had been using the laser focus serum for quite a few months last year until one day a couple months ago I checked the ingredients of a more recent bottle only to find retinyl palmitate had been removed from the product. Apparently, and I was told this, retinyl palmitate is no longer an ingredient in the laser serum. You can imagine my surprise that Clinique can reformulate a product without making it known and I am also surprised they are able to make the same claims about the product.

Results
Value
Recommend
Reviewed by
D.C
04.04.2013
Serum Corrector

I received a sample from my gal that works at the department store. I simply cannot say enough about it. I ordered it and along with the bonus kit. It has done wonders with my skin. I, also, use Avon's Banishing Cream along with Loreal's Night Cream. My skin has not looked this good in years and I will be 62. My husband and friends have noticed that "something" is different. I won't let them in on my secret.

Results
Recommend
Value
Reviewed by
Louise
WRITE A COMMENT
Enter a title for your review
 
First Name, Last Initial
Optional
Email Address
 
How would you rate this product on the following:
Results
Value
Recommend
     
     
     
Review
500 characters left
 
SUBMIT
CANCEL

Terms of Use

585630-IIS2 v1.0.0.389 4/19/2015 7:50:43 PM