Rosa Artica Eye Youth Regenerating Eye Balm

by Kiehl's  
Price:
$46 - 0.5 fl. oz.
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Category:
Skin Care > Retinol Products > Eye Moisturizers
Last Updated:
6/20/2014
Jar Packaging:
Yes
Tested On Animals:
Yes

For what this costs, you should expect an eye cream loaded with anti-aging ingredients alongside ingredients proven to moisturize skin, all packaged so that the most important ingredients (the ones you're paying extra for) will remain as effective as possible. Sadly, what you get is a mixed bag. On the plus side, this eye cream is emollient-rich and can make good on its claim to deeply hydrate skin. The emollients this contains are great for dry skin anywhere on the face.

The formula also contains the mineral pigments mica and titanium dioxide, which lend a subtle whitening/brightening effect that can, to a minor extent, reduce the appearance of dark circles (but a concealer goes a lot further in this regard).

The weak spots are jar packaging (we explain why in the More Info section) and Kiehl's allegedly miraculous "Resurrection Flower" (listed as Haberlea Rhodopensis leaf extract) is the very last ingredient listed, meaning it's barely present and most likely not present in an amount that can help your skin. Also barely present are other state of the art anti-aging ingredients, which is truly disappointing. The shea and cocoa butters have antioxidant benefits, but not in a product like this where these ingredients would be routinely exposed to degrading light and air due to the jar packaging.

In the end, this isn't a bad eye cream, just not as exciting as it could've been and not packaged to keep the best ingredients as stable as possible once its opened.

Pros:
  • Contains some tried-and-true emollient ingredients for dry skin.
  • Makes good on its claim to "deeply hydrate" skin.
  • Mica and titanium dioxide add a soft, radiant glow to skin.
Cons:
  • Jar packaging won't keep light- and air-sensitive ingredients stable once opened.
  • Contains a teeny-tiny, likely inconsequential amount of the called-out rose extract.
  • A basic formula that's overpriced for what you get.
More Info:

Jar Packaging: The fact that this product is packaged in a jar means the beneficial ingredients won't remain stable once it is opened. All plant extracts, vitamins, antioxidants, and most other state-of-the-art ingredients break down in the presence of air, so once a jar is opened and lets the air in these important ingredients begin to deteriorate. Jars also present a hygiene issue because even if you wash your hands or use a spatula to remove the product, you're introducing bacteria that causes further breakdown of key ingredients (Sources: Free Radical Biology and Medicine, September 2007, pages 818-829; Ageing Research Reviews, December 2007, pages 271-288; Dermatologic Therapy, September-October 2007, pages 314-321; International Journal of Pharmaceutics, June 12, 2005, pages 197-203; Pharmaceutical Development and Technology, January 2002, pages 1-32; International Society for Horticultural Science, www.actahort.org/members/showpdf?booknrarnr=778_5; and www.beautypackaging.com/articles/2007/03/airless-packaging.php).

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.

Rosa Arctica Eye Youth Regenerating Eye Balm is infused with the rare resurrection flower to deeply hydrate and re-energize skin for visibly younger-looking eyes. Natural brighteners instantly smooth and illuminate as increased collagen and elastin production jolts cellular vitality for restored density, volume and thickness.

Aqua / Water, Glycerin, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Squalane, Glyceryl Stearate, Theobroma Cacao Butter / Cocoa Seed Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii Butter / Shea Butter, Cetyl Alcohol, Beta Vulgaris / Beet Root Extract, PEG-100 Stearate, Copernicia Cerifera Cera / Carnauba Wax, Hydroxypropyl Tetrahydropyrantriol, Propylene Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, Tocopherol, Sodium Polyacrylate, Chlorphenesin, Mica, Stearyl Alcohol, Myristyl Alcohol, Ci 77891 / Titanium Dioxide, Acrylates Copolymer, Adenosine, Faex Extract / Yeast Extract, Haberlea Rhodopensis / Haberlea Rhodopensis Leaf Extract.

This line has been around for quite some time, and has its origins in a family-owned pharmacy based in New York City. Perhaps its neighborly beginnings with a big-city heritage are what propelled Kiehl's to its long-standing status as a popular product line. Considering that Kiehl's doesn't advertise (at least not in the traditional sense, though their products get frequent press), their brand identity and status in the minds of consumers are impressive.

What gets lost in all the fashion magazine hype and company claims of "excellence" and "quality ingredients" is that almost all of the Kiehl's products hardly warrant excitement or even mild enthusiasm. Most of them are surprisingly ordinary, with a dusting of natural ingredients almost always at the very end of the ingredient list, well after the preservatives. That amounts to little more than a token attempt to make the products appear more natural to those who want to believe a plant or vitamin must somehow be better for the skin than something that sounds more chemical. Nevertheless, that token amount is enough to allow Kiehl's to brag about how its products nourish the skin or are more environmentally friendly, when they're not.

Aside from the allure of the natural, this line consists of totally ordinary and often completely unnatural ingredients. More disheartening for skin is that many of the ingredients are of questionable benefit for those with sensitive, oily, or blemish-prone skin. In some instances product ingredients are irritating for any skin type, while half of the sunscreen products are a serious problem for reliable sun protection. If you can't resist the allure of Kiehl's, just know that the product assembly will work best for those with dry to very dry skin and that, for the money, most of the formulas aren't knock-your-socks-off thrilling.

Note: Kiehl's is categorized as a brand that tests on animals because its products are sold in China. Although Kiehl's does not conduct animal testing for its products sold elsewhere, the Chinese government requires imported cosmetics be tested on animals, so foreign companies retailing there must comply. This requirement is why some brands state that they don’t test on animals “unless required by law.” Animal rights organizations consider cosmetic companies retailed in China to be brands that test on animals, and so does the Paula’s Choice Research Team.

For more information about Kiehl's, owned by L'Oreal, call (800) 543-4572 or visit www.kiehls.com.

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About the Experts

Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books on skin care and makeup. She is known worldwide as the Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula's Choice. Paula's expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international television including:

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The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products for your skin, using research-based criteria to review beauty products from an honest, balanced perspective. Each member of the team was personally trained by Paula herself.

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