Rosaliac AR Intense Localized Redness Intensive Serum
1.35 fl. oz. for $39.95
Last Updated:03.12.2015
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:Yes
Review Overview

There aren't enough words to explain how utterly disappointing this fragrance-free serum from La Roche-Posay is. It is an underwhelming, utterly mundane formulation with a potentially sticky combination of water, glycerin, and film former (think hairspray). The only possibly worthwhile ingredient is a plant extract called Tambourissa trichophylla. There is no published research showing it has any anti-inflammatory properties whatsoever. In fact, the only information comes from the ingredient manufacturer who sells lots of ingredients with all kinds of miraculous claims. Talk about believing your own fantasies!

There are so many proven anti-inflammatory and skin-healing ingredients that those with rosacea or sensitive skin should be using, it just doesn't make sense to waste your money on a single plant extract with sketchy proof of efficacy. Skin is a complex organ and the causes of rosacea are complex, and the skin also needs anti-aging and cell-renewal ingredients. This one-note product is off key at best.

  • Fragrance-free, which is a must for those with rosacea.
  • Boring formula that contains little to improve redness or signs of irritation from rosacea.
  • Lacks a range of soothing and anti-aging ingredients to improve skin's healthy functioning.
  • Expensive for such a mundane formula.

Treatment for sensitive skin prone to redness. Helps reduce visible redness, irritation and discomfort, suitable for rosacea-prone skin.


Water, Glycerin, Isostearyl Neopentanoate, Butylene Glycol, Pentylene Glycol, Polysorbate 20, Tambourissa Trichophylla Leaf Extract, Glyceryl Acrylate/Acrylic Acid Copolymer, Dimethicone, Dimethiconol, Ammonium Polyacryldimethyltauramide/ Ammonium Polyacryldimethyl Taurate, Disodium EDTA, Acetyl Dipeptode-1 Cetyl Ester

Brand Overview

La Roche-Posay At-A-Glance

Strengths: A few good cleansers; anti-aging formulas tend to be stably packaged to get the most out of the air/light-sensitive ingredients; many fragrance-free options; a unique lip moisturizer; some praiseworthy specialty products.

Weaknesses: Some problematic, overly irritating exfoliants; several ho-hum moisturizers and sunscreens; ineffective skin-lighteners; disappointing toner.

L'Oreal-owned La Roche-Posay has a pharmaceutical lineage based in France, and the company speaks of their thermal spring water as the cornerstone of their commitment to dermatological skin care. Sound familiar? L'Oreal-owned Biotherm makes similar claims for the water in their products, yet their marketing niche is spas, while La Roche-Posay caters to doctors and consumers interested in effective, no-frills skin care. Regardless of the source of their water, or how many minerals there may be in it, or the other benefits they assert it has, water is water and skin can't tell the difference. Even if the water were somehow "special," it takes a lot more than water to create and maintain healthy skin. This is something La Roche-Posay is aware of, because they do offer a fairly broad range of products to address the various needs of skin.

Their thermal spring water is said to be a rich source of selenium. Selenium is a nonmetallic element that has potent antioxidant ability. However, almost all of the research surrounding its benefits pertains to dietary or supplemental consumption, not to topical application. According to the research, selenium is absorbed into skin and helpful when applied topically only when applied as l-selenomethionine (Source: Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, July 2004, pages 149–155). It is unknown whether the water La Roche-Posay uses contains this form of selenium, but we wouldn't bank on it for a unique benefit.

For a dermatologist-oriented line like La Roche-Posay, most of the products are surprisingly devoid of state-of-the-art or other interesting ingredients. There are some standout products, such as those with retinol and stabilized vitamin C; however, most of them are one-note options that offer the help of their promoted ingredient but don't commingle it with anything else of value to skin. It's ironic that although there's not a jar package to be found in this line, most of the moisturizers lack light- or air-sensitive ingredients, so jar packaging actually wouldn't be a problem. In fact, most of the moisturizers are downright monotonous. For the money, these products will leave your skin wanting more.

If you steer your way to the well-formulated products La Roche-Posay offers, you will find some first-rate options. They're not as varied as what many other lines offer, but for a pragmatic, no-frills approach to serious skin care, they'll do just fine. In fact, among all of the L'Oreal-owned skin-care lines, La Roche-Posay comes closest to successfully competing with the best of the best. It's up to you to decide if "close" is good enough. However, if you need to avoid fragrance and a range of potentially irritating plant extracts prevalent in the products of many brands, this line may suit your skin to a T.

Note: La Roche-Posay is categorized as a brand that tests on animals because its products are sold in China. Although La Roche-Posay 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 La Roche-Posay, owned by L'Oreal, call (888) 577-5226 or visit www.laroche-posay.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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Intensely Red

I used the rosaliac serum with moderate results so when I saw the AR intense, I purchased it expecting to experience even more benefits. This did not help my redness and actually made it worse. I continued using it and noticed the red bumps that started forming were getting more inflamed at which time I discontinued it. Upon introducing it back into my regimen several weeks later produced the same results. I wish I had read Paula's review before wasting $45.00.

Reviewed by
Michelle P.
Fantastic Find

Usually Paula's choice is spot on with their reviews, but this stuff deserves a best rating or at least a good. Granted, I don't have severe Rosacea but it has seriously alleviated my symptoms and prevented future flare ups. Unfortunately a lot of Rosacea creams seem to have other ingredients which bother my skin (Finacea and Clinique). This doesn't add to the problem. Love it.

Reviewed by
Vanessa B
beg to differ, helps my rosacea

I am traveling a ton this month & long airplane rides, poor sleep, fluctuating temps, sun, more wine than usual made my rosacea very angry. I had a sample tube of this in my bag, just in case, and it saved the day. Redness tamed, glaring red bumps sent packing. It's pricey, indeed. If you have the chance to buy in Europe, it's a fraction of the cost (about $22) I stocked up. I appreciate Beautypedia reviews, but this one I am going to disagree with. Bu, rosacea is like that!

Reviewed by
So far so good

I have only been using this for a week. So far I like it alright but it does not absorb as much as I thought it would but my skin does feel more moisturized than it does when I use the Olay 7 Total Effects. So I dunno. I will try reviewing again when I am done with the product for more detail. I used Biomedic years ago and loved it but it was always soooo expensive; their retinol cream and conditioning toner worked amazing.

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