Elizabeth Arden expands on their well-known ceramide capsules concept (vitamin E-looking capsules you open individually to apply) with this serum that comes in a single transparent container that lets you see miniature capsules floating in a watery formula inside. It's visually appealing, but that's about it. The end result is a product that's not as revolutionary as it might seem—though the fragrance-free formula contains a good mix of anti-aging ingredients.
The original Arden capsules are gold-colored, plastic capsules that contain a serum-type product that can be used on the face. The product is released when you squeeze the capsules. This version, on the other hand, has micro-capsules that "burst" as you use the container's squeeze-pump. Do these little capsules really help deliver special ingredients to the skin? No, not in the least. In truth, this is an aesthetic cosmetics chemist technique, not a real delivery system, but the small silvery capsules do look pretty in the package.
Upon application, this serum feels somewhat tacky, but that feeling dissipates once it dries down. Although it does contain several barrier-repair ingredients, as well as cell-communicating ingredients, it doesn't feel quite moisturizing enough for dry skin. If your skin is dry to very dry, you will definitely need another moisturizer to soothe that dryness. This serum is far better for normal to combination or oily skin, including breakout-prone skin.
The previously mentioned skin-repairing ingredients are good for protecting skin's moisture barrier, but the formula missed our top rating due to the lackluster mix of antioxidants. We would like to see more - and more interesting - antioxidants included.
There's also the issue of the "radiance" in this serum, which comes from the mineral mica. This serum has a noticeable sparkle to it, especially once it's dried, which might not appeal to everyone, especially those with oily skin or combination skin who don't want extra shine. But that comes down to personal preference, rather than being a formulary drawback.
Overall, this isn't a bad product, just not one with exceptional qualities to make it worth the investment. We suggest looking at our list of Best Serums for superior options.
- Has a good mix of cell-communicating and skin-repairing ingredients that can protect skin's moisture barrier.
- Easy to apply.
- Hydrates combination to oily skin without a heavy feel.
- Lacks a potent blend of antioxidants that would add to its anti-aging properties.
- The floating capsules in the container offer no special benefit for skin.
This unique liquid serum with caplet mini-beads activates when dispensed, providing a refreshing burst that initially clings to skin then dries to a smooth weightless finish. Use to help reinforce skin’s essential moisture barrier, even skin tone, retexturize, and reduce the appearance of early signs of wrinkles. Rejuvenates the look of tired skin for a more energized complexion.
Water/Aqua/Eau, Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Propylene Glycol, Pentylene Glycol, PEG-6 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides, Adenosine, Calcium Alginate, Caprylyl Glycol, Carbomer, Ceramide 1, Ceramide 3, Ceramide 6 LI, Cholesterol, Citric Acid, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Fucose, Gellan Gum, Glucose, Glucuronic Acid, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Hydrolyzed Yeast Protein, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Mica, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Phytosphingosine, PPG-26-Buteth-26, Propanediol, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Trideceth-9, Xanthan Gum, Chlorphenesin, Phenoxyethanol, Sodium Benzoate, Titanium Dioxide (Ci 77891).
Former nurse Elizabeth Arden was a pioneer in the beauty industry. At the turn of the 20th century, Arden began her legacy when she opened her first salon, with the now-familiar red door. Over the next several years she introduced new products and services to women unaccustomed to such choices, and almost single-handedly made it acceptable for modern women to wear makeup. And while Arden understood and met these beauty needs, she was also adept at self-promotion and packaging, helping to solidify the idea that what holds the product should be as beautiful as the woman who uses it. She was the front-runner in the cosmetics industry for quite some time, until another young go-getter by the name of Estee Lauder began her own empire—one that would eventually lead to the Elizabeth Arden line being almost an afterthought in the mind of many consumers.
Not only has Arden's image been diminished over the years due to odd distribution patterns (consumers were getting mixed messages as this prestige line began showing up in drug and discount chain stores), but also through their own formulary mistakes and seeming unwillingness to pay attention to current research. Given the history of this line and several outstanding products they've produced in the past, it's very frustrating that what's offered today is such a mishmash of good and bad, with a hefty dose of average. Arden still has several sunscreens that fall short by leaving out sufficient UVA protection. In contrast, Estee Lauder and the Lauder-owned lines have their sunscreen acts together and consistently impress by including other state-of-the-art goodies to amplify the environmental protection of their moisturizers.
Many of Arden's products also contain potentially problematic ingredients or are packaged in a way that puts the light- and air-sensitive ingredients at risk of breaking down shortly after the product is opened. Given Elizabeth Arden's (the woman) pioneering, innovative spirit, we can't imagine her being completely pleased with the state of her namesake skin-care line (Arden passed away in 1966). Having the gorgeous Catherine Zeta-Jones as a spokesmodel for most of the early 2000s may have raised more interest in this brand than in years past, but a pretty face and eye-catching ads don't always translate to good skin care, as evidenced by the reviews on this site. There are some very impressive products in this line, but it's definitely one that demands careful attention to what you're buying lest you put your skin at risk.
For more information about Elizabeth Arden, call (800) 326-7337 or visit www.elizabetharden.com.
Elizabeth Arden Makeup
Cosmetics trailblazer Elizabeth Arden may have been single-handedly responsible for bringing modern makeup to American women (she opened the famous Red Door Salon in 1910 and formulated the first blush and tinted powders in 1912), but today's lineup of Arden makeup has far more disappointments than its pioneering namesake would have liked. Most of the Arden foundations with sunscreen either leave out the five prime UVA-screening active ingredients or because their SPF numbers are unnecessarily low. Either way, only one of the foundations with sunscreens can be relied on as your sole source of facial sun protection.
In contrast to the mostly disappointing foundations, you'll be pleased with what Arden offers for concealer, eyeshadow, lipstick, and mascara. Each of these categories has some brilliant products to consider, and they serve to prove, at least to a modest extent, that Elizabeth Arden makeup is not to be counted out just yet. The remaining products have little to extol, either because they are truly ineffective or because the competition has Arden beat by a mile. A continual bright spot for Arden is that their tester units are typically well organized and the colors are grouped so it's easy to zero in on what you like.