This very rich moisturizer's ingredient list is longer than most and seems to include everything but the kitchen sink. However, not everything it contains is good for dry skin, and some of the ingredients are problematic.
At its core, this is a good moisturizer; its mix of plant oils, emollients, glycerin, antioxidants, and skin-repairing ingredients is mostly impressive. However, some of the plant extracts are fragrant and potentially irritating, as are the numerous fragrance ingredients, which we discuss in the More Info section.
What's most disappointing is the jar packaging. Darphin is an Estee Lauder–owned brand, and the two companies' products often have more in common than consumers might think—though Darphin's spa lineage commands a much higher price than what Lauder (and Lauder's Clinique line) typically charges for their department store moisturizers. Darphin's reliance on jar packaging means the many light- and air-sensitive ingredients this moisturizer contains, and that are the most noteworthy for skin, won't remain stable once you open the product. See More Info for details on why jar packaging for anti-aging products adds up to a waste of money.
In better packaging, and with a more realistic price and a formula without irritants, this moisturizer would have more going for it; as is, it's one more example of how spa-themed products aren't any better than those sold outside of such a pampering environment.
- Contains a good mix of ingredients for dry skin.
- Some of the ingredients do have anti-aging benefits.
- Really overpriced for what you get.
- Jar packaging won't keep most of the key ingredients protected once opened.
- Amount of fragrant plants plus fragrance ingredients puts skin at risk of irritation.
Daily use of Fragrant Products: 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).
Jar Packaging: The fact that it's 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).
Sumptuously rich, firming and wrinkle-defying cream with a powerful Peptide complex, Hyaluronic Acid spheres, Iris and Padina pavonica extracts helps reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles as it visibly densifies and firms skin for a plumper appearance.
Water\Aqua\Eau, Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Butylene Glycol, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter) , Glycerin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Hydrogenated Polydecene, Tridecyl Trimellitate, Triisostearin, Squalane, Iris Florentina Root Extract, Palmitoyl Dipeptide-5 Diaminobutyroyl Hydroxythreonine, Palmitoyl Dipeptide-5 Diaminohydroxybutyrate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Extract, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Oil, Garcinia Indica (Kokum) Seed Butter, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Protein, Tocopheryl Acetate, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seedcake, Phytic Acid, Tocopherol, Hypnea Musciformis (Algae) Extract, Gellidiela Acerosa (Algae) Extract, Hordeum Vulgare (Barley) Extract, Equisetum Arvense (Horsetail) Extract, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Hibiscus Sabdariffa Flower Extract, Menyanthes Trifoliata (Buckbean) Leaf Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Arabidopsis Thaliana Extract, Padina Pavonica Thallus Extract, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Polyglyceryl-3 Beeswax, Beheneth-25, Propylene Glycol Dicaprate, Caprylyl Methicone, PCA Dimethicone, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Dimethicone, Caprylyl Glycol, Acetyl Glucosamine, Caffeine, Lecithin, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Xanthan Gum, Benzophenone-4, Hexylene Glycol, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Tetrasodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin, Fragrance (Parfum), Hydroxyisohexyl 3-Cyclohexene Carboxaldehyde, Citronellol, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone, Benzyl Salicylate, Hydroxycitronellal, Geraniol, Linalool, Limonene, Benzyl Benzoate, Hexyl Cinnamal, Coumarin, Eugenol, Ext. Violet 2, Red 4.
From its beginnings as a spa line developed for French aestheticians in the late 1950s, Darphin's core belief is that beauty comes from inner balance and harmony of the body, mind, and soul. This vision was truly new decades ago, and while it sounds great as an image-enhancing philosophy, it never translated, either back then or now, into progressive products that will make a significant difference in the appearance of your skin. In fact, among all of the skin-care lines espousing natural ingredients and botanical extracts, Darphin is the least impressive, with inadequate, dated formulations. Close competitor (and forerunner) Clarins at least includes several daytime moisturizers with sunscreen and also offers a complete collection of sunscreens for the body. Not so with Darphin, whose sunscreen selection is limited at best. Apparently, inner balance involves putting your skin at risk for wrinkles, discolorations, sagging, and, potentially, cancer.
Estee Lauder acquired Darphin in 2003, but that investment has resulted in little improvement or change to this line, options that are desperately needed. Almost without exception, Darphin products are vastly overpriced for what you get. Many of them contain problematic ingredients or plants whose benefit for skin is unknown or merely anecdotal.
As you might expect, most of the anti-aging claims Darphin makes for its products stem from the exotic to commonplace plants and plant extracts they contain. Although it's appealing to think that familiar substances such as ginseng, sandalwood, and corn can firm skin and improve the signs of aging, they do no such thing. Adhering to Darphin's skin-care routines (all of which involve multiple products, most with redundant formulas) would leave skin vulnerable to sun damage, and the many fragrance components found in products throughout the line increase the chance that skin will suffer a phototoxic reaction when exposed to sunlight. Considering the premium prices of these products, that's a lot of potential for a literal and figurative burn!
For more information about Darphin Paris, owned by Estee Lauder, call (866) 880-4559 or visit www.darphhin.com.