Stem Cellular Repair Moisturizer
1.7 fl. oz. for $65
Last Updated:10.21.2013
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:No
Review Overview

The implication that stem cells from fruits are the fountain of youth for skin is misleading, because that's not the case. It's a bigger discussion you can check out in the More Info section, but the bottom line is that stem cells from apples, grapes, or any other fruit, organic or not, cannot stimulate human stem cells or somehow trigger a repair of malfunctioning stem cells so you'll see much younger skin around the eyes or elsewhere. It's a good story, but cosmetics haven't surpassed the medical field in their pioneering use of stem cells to solve the problems of aging—not even close!

The ingredients in this moisturizer that can help skin look and act younger include several non-fragrant plant oils, antioxidant vitamins, and repairing ingredients like sodium hyaluronate (the salt form of hyaluronic acid). Those also show up in other, less expensive moisturizers Juice Beauty sells, so the extra cost here seems to have more to do with the marketing hype behind plant stem cells, which isn't a worthwhile investment.

Even if you choose to believe stem cells are the elixir of youth we've been hoping for (and whether you do or not is always up to you; we're just presenting the facts so you can make an informed decision), this moisturizer isn't one we can rate well due to its juice base and inclusion of irritating fragrant oils. None of these are helpful for skin; think of getting lemon juice, a major ingredient in this moisturizer, on a paper cut—ouch! The juices have antioxidant benefits for skin, but those components should be extracted and used to benefit your skin, not included in pure juice form where the good components mix with the fragrant components that serve as a source of irritation.

  • Contains several non-fragrant plant oils that improve dry skin.
  • Nice mix of repairing and antioxidant ingredients.
  • The juice base is irritating.
  • The fragrant oils are an additional source of irritation.
  • Stem cell claims are not based on scientific proof (isn't it amazing how the cosmetics industry seems to know far more about stem cells than the medical field?).
  • Costs more than other Juice Beauty moisutrizers, but you're not necessarily getting a superior product.
More Info:

Stem cells are cells in animals and plants that are capable of becoming any other type of cell in that organism and of producing more of those cells. Despite the fact that stem cell research is in its infancy, many cosmetics companies claim they are successfully using plant-based or human-derived stem cells in their anti-aging products. The claims run the gamut, from reducing wrinkles to elastin repair and cell regeneration, so the temptation for consumers to try these is intense.

The truth is that stem cells in skin-care products do not work as claimed. In fact, they likely have no effect at all because stem cells must be alive to function as stem cells. Once these delicate cells are added to skin-care products, they are long dead and, therefore, useless. It's actually a good thing that stem cells in skin-care products can't work as claimed because one stem cell study has revealed that they present a potential risk of cancer.

Plant stem cells, such as those derived from apples, melons, flowers, and rice, cannot stimulate stem cells in human skin, but because they are from plants these ingredients likely have antioxidant properties. It's a good thing plant stem cells can't work as stem cells in skin-care products; after all, you don't want your skin to absorb cells that can grow into apples or watermelons!

There are also claims that because a plant's stem cells allow a plant to repair itself or survive in harsh climates, these benefits can be passed on to human skin. How a plant functions in nature is unrelated to human skin, and these claims are completely without substantiation.

Another twist on the issue is that cosmetics companies claim they have taken components (such as peptides) out of the plant stem cells and made them stable so they then can work as stem cells. This approach is not valid because stem cells must be complete to function normally. Even if you could isolate substances or extracts from these cells and make them stable, there is no published research showing they can affect stem cells in human skin.


An ultimate moisturizer with a proprietary blend of fruit stem cells infused into a Vitamin C and an organic resveratrol grapeseed rich formula to repair damage and aggressively firm and decrease wrinkles. Certified organic, antioxidant-rich ingredients and plant oils hydrate and improve elasticity for lasting, advanced age defy results.


Organic Juices Of Pyrus Malus (Organic Apple Juice), Vitis Vinifera (Organic White Grape Juice), Citrus Medica Limonum (Organic Lemon Juice), Aloe Barbadensis (Organic Aloe Leaf Juice), Vegetable Glycerin, Octyl Palmitate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Glyceryl Stearate, Stearic Acid, Cetearyl Alcohol, Malus Sylvestris (Apple Buds), Vitis Vinifera (Grape Buds) & Citrus Limonum (Lemon Bark), Organic Plant Oils Of Helianthus Annuus (Organic Sunflower Seed Oil), Butyrospermum Parkii (Organic Shea Butter), Simmondsia Chinensis (Organic Jojoba Seed Oil), Organic Essential Fatty Acids Of Oenothera Biennis (Organic Evening Primrose), Linum Usitatissimum (Organic Linseed Oil), Borago Officinalis (Organic Borage Seed Oil), Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate (Vitamin C), Xanthan Gum, Panthenol (Vitamin B5), Allantoin, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Citrus Reticulata (Mandarin), Litsea Cubeba (May Chang) And Cinnamomum Camphora (Ho Wood) Pure Essential Oils.

Brand Overview

Juice Beauty At-A-Glance

Strengths: They provide complete ingredient lists on their Web site; all of their facial sunscreens provide sufficient UVA protection.

Weaknesses: Expensive; ingredient lists do not reflect FDA standards (terms such as "organic botanical extracts" and "organic juices of" don't make the regulatory cut); occasional use of jar or clear packaging diminishes the potency of light- and air-sensitive antioxidants; no products to successfully manage acne or skin discolorations; no reliable exfoliants; several products, including the facial sunscreens, contain juices, plant extracts, or fragrant oils that research has shown are skin irritants.

As you may have gathered from this line's name, fruit and vegetable juices are their point of difference. Before we discuss why that's not necessarily a good thing for your skin, we want to provide a little background information on the company.

The women behind this California-based brand have years of experience dealing with cosmetic formulations and various wellness-oriented companies. As the story goes, they felt the cosmetic marketplace was missing a line of products that contained organic ingredients, at least inasmuch as it was possible to create skin-care items that capitalize on the enduring trend for all things natural. Unlike other brands touting the organic label, Juice Beauty decided not to use organic ingredients diluted by water (which, by their reasoning would lower the total actual organic content even though water itself can be considered organic), but instead devised an organic juice blend. This blend (which includes various fruit and vegetable juices) serves as the base for every product they sell. Although it may seem intriguing that they're using juice instead of water, it's important to point out that any fruit or vegetable juice contains a preponderance of...water. For example, juice from fresh oranges, organic or not, can contain up to 85% water, while grape juice is typically 80% water. So much for juice being the solution to diluted ingredients; it's already diluted, naturally!

However, what's even more critical for you to know is that some of the juices Juice Beauty chose can be far too irritating to apply to your skin on a daily basis. The biggest offenders along this line are lemon and orange juices, both of which are extremely acidic and, as such capable of causing irritation. Plus, applying lemon juice to your skin can cause a phototoxic reaction when skin is exposed to sunlight (Sources: Photodermatology, Photoimmunology, and Photomedicine, December 2005, pages 318–321; and www.naturaldatabase.com).

One of the naturally occurring chemicals in lemon juice is the fragrance chemical limonene. Pharmaceutical research has shown that limonene applied to skin enhances penetration of other ingredients, which is not good news if you're using a product that contains not only lemon juice but also other irritants as well (Sources: Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin, April 2008, pages 656–661; Journal of Occupational Health, May 2006, pages 480–486; and Advances in Colloid and Interface Science, November 2006, pages 123–126 and pages 369–385). If you've ever gotten orange or lemon juice on a minor cut (even a minor cuticle nick) you know how much it stings, and that's really bad for skin! Although it's true that citrus juices do have antioxidant and even anti-inflammatory actions, the effects of their irritating compounds likely surpasses the effects from the beneficial compounds; not to mention that there are plenty of other ingredients (natural and synthetic) that have potent antioxidant properties without any potential for irritation.

In addition to the problematic natural ingredients, Juice Beauty uses raw sugarcane as a natural form of glycolic acid and willow bark as a natural stand-in for salicylic acid. Although there is an association (albeit distant) to be made for both, the fact is that neither of these natural ingredients on their own is an adequate stand-in for authentic (and, yes, synthetic) glycolic or salicylic acids. We wouldn't expect these natural substitutes to exfoliate skin and reduce blemishes any more than we would expect to be able to print a legible novel on tree bark. In fact, some of the Juice Beauty products contain actual glycolic acid rather than a natural-sounding derivative.

Several Juice Beauty products contain an impressive roster of state-of-the-art ingredients, including several antioxidants, peptides, and even some soothing, non-fragrant plant components. Ironically, removing this line's namesake ingredients (namely the juices) from their products would have made the products a much better choice!

Turning to the organic claims, we applaud the company for acknowledging the lack of regulations on the term "organic" as it applies to cosmetics. They are also refreshingly forthcoming about what the current standards stipulate, and offer all the necessary proof that the organic ingredients they've chosen are from USDA-certified organic farms. Juice Beauty simply states that they offer consumers a "meaningful percentage of organic ingredients." Based on the ingredient lists for their products, it's easy to see that juices and other natural ingredients comprise the bulk of each formula.

Consumers looking for skin-care products with organic ingredients can consider some of the options from Juice Beauty—there are a handful of effective, non-irritating products in this line. Yet, as we stated before, although organic is a strong pull for consumers, it does not always (actually, in most instances it absolutely does not) translate into better or safer cosmetics. Considering the range of ingredients Juice Beauty uses: most of them are indeed natural and certified organic—regardless of that certification, however, a natural ingredient that's irritating for skin is still a problem. Being passionate about organic products and an organic lifestyle need not involve your skin taking a turn for the worse via application of potentially damaging ingredients (particularly camphor, designated/disguised as Ho Wood in many Juice Beauty products), and camphor is a strong skin irritant (Sources: British Journal of Dermatology, November 2000, pages 923–929; and Clinical Toxicology, December 1981, pages 1485–1498).

For more information about Juice Beauty, call (415) 457-4600 or visit www.juicebeauty.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.

Member Comments
Summary of Member Comments
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love Juice!

I turned 48 in November and after using the majority of the products that are best for me, my skin is way better than it was before using JB, (sun spots faded,skin firmer) I don't know about it saying that it is irritating, cause it is not, as a matter of fact, these are the only products that do NOT irritate me...I love love love these products!!

Reviewed by
mel d
Effective fo wrinkles

I used this product during pregnancy due to it being organic and compatible with pregnancy. After delivery I discontinued its use due to negative review on this website and switched to "recommended" and "effective" product. After several weeks I observed re-appearance of fine lines and wrinkles which were not there before while using Stem Cellular Moisturizer. Also, my skin started feeling dry and aged, which was startling. I am back to using Juice Beauty Moisturizer, it is excellent!!!

Reviewed by
Irritating to the max!

I wish I could give this product all "0's".i got this product from ulta in a sample size. I was told it was an eye cream. But realized that that it wasn't. But, I decided to try it as an eye cream anyways. It stung so bad! I would never put this on my face.

Reviewed by
Annette D.
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