Hydra-Pure Firming Serum has a texture that’s more lotion than serum, and it contains a brilliant assortment of ingredients to help normal to dry skin look and feel its best. The amount of lactic acid is impressive, but the pH of 4.7 significantly reduces any potential for exfoliation. The lactic acid still has merit as a water-binding agent, however, and the formula contains appreciable amounts of several well-researched antioxidants, plus retinol and other cell-communicating ingredients. One more thing: Dimethyl sulfone is the fourth listed ingredient. Also known as methylsulfonylmethane (MSM), there is limited research supporting its benefit for skin. The only published study was a single case report of a man with a rare skin disorder (ichthyosis) who responded well to topical treatment with a moisturizer that contained, among several other ingredients, MSM. The case report did not elucidate if it was the MSM or another ingredient (or a synergistic combination) that provided relief (Source: Ostomy/Wound Management, April 2006, pages 82–86).
Contains 14 collagen-building ingredients in one product. Multiple active ingredients penetrate the skin, through a micro-encapsulated delivery system, to literally resurface the skin by intensifying the delivery of all ingredients. Resurfaces skin, smoothes wrinkles and firms. Reduces skin-aging enzymes that break down collagen while simultaneously strengthening its growth
Purified Water, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethyl Sulfone, Lactic Acid, Linoleic Acid, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Palmitoyl Pentapeptide-3, Sodium Hyaluronate, Ascorbic Acid, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Retinol, Retinyl Palmitate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Ubiquinone, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Emblica Officinalis Fruit Extract, Solanum Lycopersicum (Tomato) Fruit/Leaf/Stem Extract, Soy Isoflavones, Silybum Marianum Fruit Extract, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Extract, Glycerin, Squalane, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Dimethicone, Sodium Polyacrylate, Zinc PCA, Copper PCA, Sodium PCA, Phospholipids, Panthenol, Tribehenin, Ceramide 2, PEG-10 Rapeseed Sterol, Trideceth-6, PEG/PPG-18/18 Dimethicone, Carbomer, Acrylates/Carbamate Copolymer, Triethanolamine, Polysorbate 60, Polysorbate 20, Butylene Glycol, PPG-2 Myristyl Ether Propionate, Caprylyl Glycol, Disodium EDTA, Tetrasodium EDTA, Pentasodium Pentetate, Phytic Acid, Potassium Citrate, Potassium Gluconate, Cyclodextrin, Phenoxyethanol, Sorbic Acid, Methylparaben, Propylparaben
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.