Although you don't need a special serum for use around the eyes (we explain why in the More Info section) we understand why you'd be tempted by this one, as its formula is exemplary. Here's the thing, though: Not a single ingredient in this eye serum is unique for the eye area. Rather, the formula is bursting with ingredients that can improve wrinkles and other signs of aging anywhere on the face. Knowing this, you're likely to think twice before buying this, but at least investing in this eye serum won't be a waste of money!
The lightweight, fluid, gel-like texture is housed in a brown glass bottle outfitted with a sleek pump applicator. It's the kind of packaging that keeps light- and air-sensitive ingredients stable during use, and this fragrance-free serum is chockfull of such ingredients! From antioxidant plant extracts with soothing qualities to a good amount of retinol plus plant-based ingredients that can lighten brown discolorations, this is one well-rounded serum that's suitable for all skin types.
This eye serum contains the exfoliating ingredients salicylic acid (BHA) plus the AHAs glycolic acid and (lesser-known) mandelic acid. The amounts of each is too low to exfoliate skin but even if they were present in greater quantities, this serum's pH is outside the range needed for effectiveness. That's not the best news but it's a minor ding on an otherwise impressive formula that can be applied all over the face. Used around the eyes, this can make good on its firming claim and, if your dark circles are caused (or have been made worse) by sun damage, it should help lighten them, too. It will not work for hereditary dark circles or dark circles due to undereye hollowing that can occur with age. For the latter, dermal fillers around the eye can make a big difference!
- Fragrance-free formula.
- Lightweight, gel-like texture suitable for all skin types.
- Loaded with anti-aging ingredients, from potent antioxidants to retinol.
- Contains some soothing agents to reduce inflamed, puffy eyes (but not age-related puffiness).
- None, though one could argue it's a bit on the pricey side; the formula is no slouch.
We know it's hard to believe, but despite our positive review, the truth is you don't need a special product for the eye area, whether labeled eye serum or something else. There is much you can do to improve signs of aging around your eyes, and the ingredients capable of doing that don't need to come from, and often aren't even included in, an eye serum. For example, most eye serums (such as this one) don't contain sunscreen, and that is a serious problem because it leaves the skin around your eyes vulnerable to sun damage, which will make dark circles and wrinkling worse! You can save money and take superior care of your eye area by using your face product, if it is well formulated and appropriate for the skin type around your eyes!
This anti-aging ferulic acid and retinol eye serum gently but powerfully reduces visible signs of aging in the delicate skin of the eyelid and around the eye while smoothing texture and tone.
Water, Ethoxydiglycol, Propylene Glycol, Centella Asiatica Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Ferulic Acid, Retinol, Potassium Azeloyl Diglycinate, Arctostaphylos Uva Ursi Leaf Extract, Arbutin, Morus Alba Leaf Extract, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract, Quercetin, Caffeine, Ubiquinone, Sodium Hyaluronate, Salicylic Acid, Glycolic Acid, Mandelic Acid, Panthenol, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Disodium Lauriminodipropionate Tocopheryl Phosphates, Phospholipids, Tetrapeptide-21, Acrylates/Carbamate Copolymer, Disodium EDTA, PVM/MA Decadiene Crosspolymer, Urea, Polysorbate 20, Potassium Hydroxide, Phenoxyethanol, Iron Oxides
As you may have gleaned from the name, dermatologist Dr. Dennis Gross created this skin-care line. Based in New York City, he claims that all of his products provide "maximum results without side effects," a statement any doctor should know better than to make. For instance, a consumer would logically assume, especially coming from a doctor, that "maximum results" means the products in question really will firm, lift, tighten, plump, or peel the skin. But Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare products don't provide maximum results, not in the least, and definitely not in any of the ways suggested by the marketing copy. In fact, although Gross includes some very impressive ingredients in his products, they cannot make good on the most enticing claims he makes for them.
As for the promise of "no side effects," that is easily refuted with a simple overview of his underachieving products. A quick summary: lavender oil can cause skin-cell death, sulfur is extremely irritating and drying to skin, ascorbic acid can be sensitizing, as can retinol, and the synthetic active sunscreen agents he uses can also present their share of problems. That's not to say that all of these ingredients are bad for skin (only the sulfur and lavender oil qualify for that description), but it's foolish to make a blanket statement that your cosmeceutical-type products are free of side effects. How could he possibly know what a person may react to?
Gross also asserts that he uses cutting-edge technology in his products, a point which I concede given the number of superior moisturizers and serums he offers, all of which compete nicely with other well-formulated products. His products are expensive, but if you're going to spend a lot of money on skin-care products, you should be purchasing state-of-the-art formulas, and these do rate. Of course, this technology (read: efficacious ingredients) doesn't extend to every Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare product, but overall this is one line whose formulas have improved considerably since the previous edition of this book, and that is excellent news!
Several of the products in this line contain emu oil. While there is research indicating that emu oil is a good emollient that can help heal skin, it is not that different from other oils that offer the same benefit, such as grape or olive or even mineral oil for that matter (Source: Australasian Journal of Dermatology, August 1996, pages 159–161).
Last, please ignore the tired claim that these products are your alternative to surgical procedures and that they use medical-grade ingredients. Concerning the latter, there is no such thing; Gross uses the same cosmetic and over-the-counter active ingredients found throughout the cosmetics industry. And although his line offers some remarkable products, none of them can provide results equivalent to Botox, dermal fillers, chemical peels, or laser treatments (and definitely not a face-lift).
Note: Unless mentioned otherwise, all MD Skincare products are fragrance-free.
For more information about Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare, call (888) 830-7546 or visit the Web site at www.dgskincare.com.
NOTE: In Spring 2010, MD Skincare became Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare.