04.10.2015
2
Bright Renew Night Cream
1.6 fl. oz. for $38
Expert Rating
Community Rating (1)
Expert Reviews
Last Updated:04.10.2015
Jar Packaging:Yes
Tested on animals:Yes

Laneige has a bad habit of ruining good products with its strongly fragranced formulas, and Bright Renew Night Cream follows that trend. In this case, the potentially irritating fragrance is joined by citrus extracts from orange and lemon fruit, which have a strong potential to provoke an irritant response on the skin due to their fragrance compounds—limonene and geraniol (Contact Dermatitis, 2006 and 2012). Along with its strong fragrance, these citrus extracts further compound the risk to skin (see More Info for the full scoop on irritation's pro-aging effects).

Adding to its problems, Bright Renew Night Cream comes in a jar, which allows the delicate beneficial ingredients, such as antioxidants, to break down rapidly, meaning your skin won't reap the benefits for long (see More Info for the full story).

Although Bright Renew Night Cream showed promise for normal to dry skin with healing emollients, anti-aging antioxidants, and a handful of skin-lightening and -repairing ingredients, the irritants and the jar packaging mean it's not only shortchanging your skin, but also potentially putting it in harm's way.

Check out our top-rated skin-lightening products and nighttime moisturizers for superior options.

Pros:
  • Creamy texture with hydrating emollients, ideal for normal to dry skin.
  • Formulated with a handful of skin-lightening and -repairing ingredients.
Cons:
  • Fragrance + other irritants put skin at risk for damage, both at the surface and below.
  • Jar packaging allows the beneficial ingredients such as antioxidants to break down.
More Info:

Inclusion of Known Irritants: Irritation, whether you see it on the surface of your skin or not, causes inflammation and as a result impairs healing, damages collagen, and depletes the vital substances your skin needs to stay young. For this reason, it is best to eliminate, or minimize as much as possible, your exposure to known skin irritants, especially when there are brilliant formulas available that do not include these types of problematic ingredients. Fragrance-free is the best way to go for all skin types (Food and Chemical Toxicology, 2008; and American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 2003)

The sneaky part about irritation is that research has demonstrated that you don't always need to see it or feel it for your skin to suffer damage, and that damage may remain hidden for a long time (Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, 2008).

Jar Packaging: The fact that it's packaged in a jar means the beneficial ingredients won't remain stable once it is opened. All plant extracts, almost all vitamins, antioxidants, and other state-of-the-art ingredients break down in the presence of air. Therefore, once a jar is opened and lets the air in, these important ingredients begin to deteriorate. Jars also are unsanitary because you're dipping your fingers into them with each use, adding bacteria that further deteriorate the beneficial ingredients.

The vast majority of ingredients that are most beneficial for your skin are not stable in the presence of light and air, which is exactly what happens when you take the lid off a jar (Pharmacology Review, 2013; and Journal of Biophotonics, 2010).

One of the critical factors in any anti-aging or skin-healing formula is the amount and variety of antioxidants, cell-communicating ingredients, and skin-repairing ingredients, and the more the better. These function in a variety of ways to reduce the effects of the constant environmental stresses your skin experiences (Dermatology Research and Practice, 2012; and The Journal of Pathology, 2007).

Antioxidants, cell-communicating ingredients, and skin-repairing ingredients not only can help prevent free-radical damage, but also, to a fairly impressive extent, help repair that damage. Surprisingly, almost all of these ingredients are just as vulnerable to sun exposure, pollution, and cigarette smoke as your skin (Pharmacognosy Review, 2013; and Journal of Biophotonics, 2010).

Once you open that jar you bought, you immediately compromise the stability of the anti-aging superstars it contains. (You can visualize their benefits disappearing like puffs of air each time you open up that lid!)

Community Reviews
Claims
Visibly brightens skin. Brightening Renewal Complex ™. Helps eliminate impurities. Helps fade and prevent dark spots. Leaves skin luminous, supple.
Ingredients
Water, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Pentaerythrityl Tetraethylhexanoate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Hydrogenated Olive Oil Lauryl Esters, Dimethicone, Squalane, Hydrogenated C6-14 Olefin Polymers, Glyceryl Stearate, Synthetic Fluorphlogopite, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Water (Himalaya Snow Water), Beta-Glucan, Saururus Chinensis Extract, Arbutin, Polyglutamic Acid, Anona Squamosa Seed Extract, Saccharum Officinarum (Sugar Cane) Extract, Acer Saccharum (Sugar Maple) Extract, Vaccinium Myrtillus Fruit/Leaf Extract, Citrus Medica Limonum (Lemon) Fruit Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Fruit Extract, Betula Alba Bark/Leaf Extract, Hydroxypropyl Bispalmitamide MEA, 1,2-Hexanediol, C12-20 Alkyl Glucoside, C14-22 Alcohols, Niacinamide, Boron Nitride, Cetearyl Alcohol, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Stearic Acid, Stearyl Behenate, Acetyl Glucosamine, Alcohol, Inulin Lauryl Carbamate, Xanthan Gum, Carbomer, Triethanolamine, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Polyglyceryl-3 Methylglucose Distearate, Polysorbate 20, PEG-100 Stearate, Disodium EDTA, Methylparaben, Phenoxyethanol, Propylparaben, Fragrance.
Brand Overview

Laneige At-A-Glance

Strengths: SPF-rated products provide broad-spectrum sun protection; utilization of some intriguing melanin-inhibiting ingredients.

Weaknesses: Highly fragranced formulas put skin at risk of irritation; use of see-through bottles and jar packaging weakens the potency of the beneficial ingredients; claims for “mineral water” don’t stand up to the research; despite a higher-than-average drugstore price point, Laneige products aren’t superior to their competitors.

Laneige is a South Korean brand owned by high-end cosmetics company, AmorePacific. Launched in 1994, the story behind this brand centers around mineral water—which they tend to label “Optimal Mineral Water”—harvested from the snow-clad peaks of the Himalayas. They allegedly spent 20 years perfecting its scientifically engineered properties for skin and, according to Laneige, this “superior water” is the secret to hydrating, protecting, and revitalizing skin.

Here’s what we really know: All water that’s included in cosmetics, regardless of the source, must go through a rigorous purification process, and there isn’t any research showing that water from any one source is better for skin than water from any other source. More to the point, repairing and hydrating skin is not as simple as adding water. Even Laneige’s highly touted mineral water won’t retain moisture in skin unless the outer barrier is reinforced with ingredients like antioxidants, emollients, and skin-repairing ingredients—all of which are required or the water just evaporates. So, does Laneige deliver in that regard? Yes and no.

The problem is that their products tend to include beneficial ingredients right alongside potentially irritating ingredients (including fragrance), which detracts from what the good ingredients would otherwise be able to do for skin. In some cases, the jar or clear bottle packaging further impedes the potency and stability of the formula because many of the superstar ingredients break down in the presence of air and/or light.

As far as Laneige makeup goes, at the time of this review they sell only a BB cream in the United States, but it is also plagued by the inclusion of potentially irritating ingredients.

In the end, despite their highly touted Korean brand prestige and steeper-than-average mass-market price point (the line is sold at Target stores in the United States), Laneige ends up being more about marketing fluff than what’s actually good for skin. Beyond the mineral water, Laneige products would have merit for their anti-aging prowess, but their inclusion of potential irritants and the use of packaging that compromises the stability of the beneficial ingredients renders the products generally unworthy of consideration.

For more information about Laneige, visit www.us.laneige.com.

About the Experts

The Beautypedia and Paula’s Choice Research teams have one mission: To help you find the best products for your skin, whether they’re from Paula’s Choice or another brand. By combining efforts, we’re able to share scientific research and remain committed to the highest standards based on our decades of experience objectively reviewing thousands upon thousands of skincare and makeup formularies in all price ranges.


Beautypedia cuts through the hype to bring you product insights and recommendations you won’t find anywhere else!

See all reviews for this brand

Laneige At-A-Glance

Strengths: SPF-rated products provide broad-spectrum sun protection; utilization of some intriguing melanin-inhibiting ingredients.

Weaknesses: Highly fragranced formulas put skin at risk of irritation; use of see-through bottles and jar packaging weakens the potency of the beneficial ingredients; claims for “mineral water” don’t stand up to the research; despite a higher-than-average drugstore price point, Laneige products aren’t superior to their competitors.

Laneige is a South Korean brand owned by high-end cosmetics company, AmorePacific. Launched in 1994, the story behind this brand centers around mineral water—which they tend to label “Optimal Mineral Water”—harvested from the snow-clad peaks of the Himalayas. They allegedly spent 20 years perfecting its scientifically engineered properties for skin and, according to Laneige, this “superior water” is the secret to hydrating, protecting, and revitalizing skin.

Here’s what we really know: All water that’s included in cosmetics, regardless of the source, must go through a rigorous purification process, and there isn’t any research showing that water from any one source is better for skin than water from any other source. More to the point, repairing and hydrating skin is not as simple as adding water. Even Laneige’s highly touted mineral water won’t retain moisture in skin unless the outer barrier is reinforced with ingredients like antioxidants, emollients, and skin-repairing ingredients—all of which are required or the water just evaporates. So, does Laneige deliver in that regard? Yes and no.

The problem is that their products tend to include beneficial ingredients right alongside potentially irritating ingredients (including fragrance), which detracts from what the good ingredients would otherwise be able to do for skin. In some cases, the jar or clear bottle packaging further impedes the potency and stability of the formula because many of the superstar ingredients break down in the presence of air and/or light.

As far as Laneige makeup goes, at the time of this review they sell only a BB cream in the United States, but it is also plagued by the inclusion of potentially irritating ingredients.

In the end, despite their highly touted Korean brand prestige and steeper-than-average mass-market price point (the line is sold at Target stores in the United States), Laneige ends up being more about marketing fluff than what’s actually good for skin. Beyond the mineral water, Laneige products would have merit for their anti-aging prowess, but their inclusion of potential irritants and the use of packaging that compromises the stability of the beneficial ingredients renders the products generally unworthy of consideration.

For more information about Laneige, visit www.us.laneige.com.