03.11.2013
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Light Years Away Brightening Eye Cream
Rating
0.5 fl. oz. for $90
Last Updated:03.11.2013
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:Yes
Review Overview

This eye cream is an emollient formula meant for dry skin around the eyes, although it’s important to note that most eye creams aren't necessary (see More Info below to find out why). Like most eye creams, this claims it can improve dark circles and reduce wrinkles.

In terms of dark circles, this eye cream doesn’t contain a single ingredient with research proving topical application nets any improvement. But, because this doesn’t contain sunscreen, it can make dark circles worse because sun damage makes undereye darkness more apparent, and most eye creams lack sunscreen.

This does contain antioxidants and a cell-communicating ingredient to help repair skin and improve the appearance of wrinkles, but the formula also contains skin-damaging lavender oil. Lavender oil is a problem for all skin types, and the irritation it causes is yet another way to make dark circles (and signs of aging) worse. For this reason, and the needlessly high price, Light Years Away Brightening Eye Cream isn’t recommended.

Pros:
  • Contains several antioxidants in packaging that will keep them stable during use.
  • Emollient formula smoothes and hydrates dry skin.
Cons:
  • Expensive.
  • Contains skin-damaging lavender oil.
  • Does not protect the eye area from sun damage, so dark circles are vulnerable to becoming darker.

More Info:

Why You May Not Need an Eye Cream

Most eye creams aren't necessary. That's either because they are poorly formulated, contain nothing special for the eye area, or come in packaging that won't keep key ingredients stable. Just because the product is labeled as an eye cream doesn't mean it's good for your eye area; in fact, many can actually make matters worse.

There is much you can do to improve signs of aging around your eyes. Any product loaded with antioxidants, skin-repairing ingredients, skin-lightening ingredients, anti-inflammatory ingredients, and effective emollients will work wonders and those ingredients don't have to come from a product labeled as an eye cream.

You would be shocked how many eye creams lack even the most basic ingredients to help skin. For example, most eye creams don't contain sunscreen. During the day that is a serious problem because it leaves the skin around your eyes vulnerable to sun damage and this absolutely will make dark circles, puffiness, and wrinkles worse!

Whatever product you put around your eye area, regardless of what it is labeled, must be well formulated and appropriate for the skin type around your eyes! That may mean you need an eye cream, but you may also do just as well applying your regular facial moisturizer around your eyes.

Research indicates that components of lavender, specifically linalool, are cytotoxic, which means that topical application causes skin-cell death (Source: Cell Proliferation, June 2004, pages 221–229). Lavender leaves contain camphor, which is a known skin irritant. Because the fragrance constituents in lavender oil oxidize when exposed to air, lavender oil is a pro-oxidant, and this enhanced oxidation increases its irritancy on skin (Source: Contact Dermatitis, September 2008, pages 143–150). Lavender oil is the most potent form, and even small amounts of it (0.25% or less) are problematic. It is a must to avoid in skin-care products, but is fine as an aromatherapy agent for inhalation or relaxation (Sources: Psychiatry Research, February 2007, pages 89–96; and www.naturaldatabase.com).

Claims

Rich moisturizing eye cream that targets under eye darkness, brightens eye contour and helps minimize lines and wrinkles.

Ingredients

Water, Squalene, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Methylsilanol Hydroxyproline Aspartate, Isononyl Isononanoate, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Cyclopentasiloxane, Dipentaerythrityl Hexahydroxystearate/Hexastearate/Hexarosinate, Dimethicone, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Pentaerythrityl Tetraethylhexanoate, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate (Octinoxate), Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Stearyl Alcohol, Panthenol, Mangifera Indica (Mango) Seed Butter, PEG-100 Stearate, Cetearyl Glucoside, Glyceryl Stearate, Caprylyl Glycol, Polyglyceryl-10 Oleate, Polyglyceryl-10 Stearate, Phenoxyethanol, Potassium Hydroxide, Xanthan Gum, C13-14 Isoparaffin, Laureth-7, Tocopherol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Adenosine, Astaxanthin, Glucosyl Hesperidin, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Polyacrylamide, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Daucus Carota Sativa (Carrot) Root Extract, Corn Starch Modified, Sodium Bisulfite, Disodium EDTA, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Lysolecithin, Glycosaminoglycans, Alteromonas Ferment Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Zizyphus Jujuba Fruit Extract, Beta-Carotene, Halidrys Siliquosa Extract, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Haematococcus Pluvialis Extract

Brand Overview

Dr. Brandt At-A-Glance

Strengths: Provides complete ingredient lists on the company website; a good daytime moisturizer with sunscreen.

Weaknesses: Expensive; overwhelming number of products that contain irritating ingredients with no established benefit for skin; no products to comprehensively address acne or oily skin; every Pores No More product is a disappointment; jar packaging; several products make claims on par with what cosmetic procedures (not skin care) can do.

The late Dr. Fredric Brandt (he passed away in April, 2015 at the age of 65) was a Miami- and New York City–based dermatologist whose claim to fame rested on two main points. The first (and it is a very important credibility factor for consumers) included the many celebrity clients worked with, while the second was his assertion that he performed more Botox and collagen injections than any other dermatologist in the world. According to Allergan, the company that makes Botox, they no longer rank the physicians who purchase Botox from them; however, they did confirm that Dr. Brandt was definitely one of their biggest buyers. Yet regardless of how much Botox or collagen Dr. Brandt or any other physician uses, what in the world does that have to do with cosmetic formulations? If anything, you have to wonder why Brandt was using so much Botox and collagen if his products truly fight wrinkles, sagging, and on and on.

Beyond Brandt's cosmetic enhancement procedures, he is the author of Age-less: The Definitive Guide to Botox, Collagen, Lasers, Peels, and Other Solutions for Flawless Skin. His book and skin-care line are competing against the vastly more popular books and product line from fellow dermatologist Dr. N.V. Perricone. Although Perricone's skin-care line has some drawbacks, including irritating ingredients and the lack of supporting research for his neuropeptide products, the majority of his products, though overpriced, have more pros than cons. Sadly, the same cannot be said for Dr. Brandt, whose namesake skin-care line is on the disappointing side, especially given the product's price points.

Brandt's products are sold with the tag line that they are "prescription strength, prescription-free," and "are formulated under dermatologic control for maximum safety and efficiency and offer the highest performance without a prescription." Aside from how unbelievable that assertion is, what is not mentioned is the fact that none of the ingredients in Brandt's products are comparable to prescription formulations. And what is "dermatologic control" anyway, given that there are no such standards anywhere in the world? Moreover, what do dermatologists know about the manufacturing of pharmaceuticals, much less cosmetics? The two arenas of expertise are completely unrelated.

Dr. Brandt positioned his products as clinically superior to what you would find in other cosmetics lines, an unproven assertion to say the least. Many of his products tout benefits that don't just stretch the truth, but snap it in two—and these fallacies were more disconcerting coming from an esteemed dermatologist. When products contain the problematic ingredients that are so pervasive in Brandt's line, such as irritating plant extracts, drying detergent cleansing agents, and far too many products with skin cell-damaging lavender oil, it becomes nothing more than a line that should be approached with extreme caution.

The line does have a few bright spots: many of Brandt's products do contain significant amounts of antioxidants, though that certainly doesn't make his line unique because many other product lines do that, too. (Here it's fair to say that while no specific amounts have been established for any antioxidant that will ensure their effectiveness, the general consensus among researchers is that more antioxidants are better than less, and less is still better than none at all.) Unless you were a devoted patient of Dr. Brandt and would be racked with guilt for not purchasing his products while visiting for an appointment, there is no reason to seek out this disappointing line.

For more information about Dr. Brandt's products, call (800) 234-1066 or visit www.drbrandtskincare.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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