Regenerist Regenerating Serum Fragrance-Free

by Olay  Regenerist
Price:
$23.99 - 1.7 fl. oz.
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Category:
Skin Care > Serums > Serums
Last Updated:
6/27/2014
Jar Packaging:
No
Tested On Animals:
Yes

Regenerist Daily Regenerating Serum Fragrance Free is, except for the omission of fragrance (which is better for your skin) identical to Olay's original Regenerist Regenerating Serum. As such, the same review applies:

This is a silky, water-based serum that contains a fairly broad complement of beneficial ingredients for all skin types. It contains approximately 2% to 3% niacinamide, and, in this amount, it can increase the skin's ceramide and fatty acid content as well as have anti-inflammatory action and work to reduce hyperpigmentation (Sources: The New Ideal in Skin Health: Separating Fact From Fiction, Thornfeldt Carl MD, Allured Books, 2010, pages 160-161; and Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, April 2004, pages 88–93).

Olay claims the peptide this contains can regenerate and intensely hydrate skin. Peptides are cell-communicating ingredients that can help improve skin's appearance and enhance its healthy functioning, but they are not miracle-workers for skin, nor are they all that hydrating on their own. They're good ingredients to see in anti-aging products, but they're not must-haves, so don't get too caught up in the peptide hype.

The various types of silicones that really give this product its elegant texture and make skin feel unbelievably silky, while the aluminum starch lends a powder-like finish best for normal to oily skin. This serum runs circles around most products sold as foundation primers, so be sure to consider this if you're of the mindset that a primer is essential to seamless makeup application. You can use a serum like this instead and save yourself an extra step!

Please Note:

Olay reformulated this serum in 2014, removing the paraben preservative system. Parabens are not evil or harmful ingredients, but the media hype has convinced many consumers otherwise, despite what the research says. Ironically, the new preservative system stands a higher chance of causing a sensitized reaction; DMDM hydantoin is a formaldehyde-releasing preservative that isn't often used in skin-care products (parabens are gentler).

This serum penetrates into skin's surface to deliver our super-concentrated amino-peptide + B3 complex. This fast absorbing, non-greasy formula provides specially designed hydration to give you significantly firmer skin and regenerate skin's appearance.

Water, Cyclopentasiloxane, Glycerin, Naicinamide, Aluminum Starch, Octenylsuccinate, Dimethicone, Panthenol, Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Polyethylene, Palmitoyl Pentapeptide-4, Sodium Hyaluronate, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate, Carnosine, Allantoin, Dimethiconol, Polyacrylamide, C13-14 Isoparaffin, Laureth-4, Laureth-7, Citric Acid, PEG-100 Stearate, DMDM Hydantoin, BHT, Disodium EDTA, Tin Oxide, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Titanium Dioxide, Mica.

Olay offers a fairly large selection of skin-care products sold at drugstores and mass-market stores. Although Olay's products are not as diversified as Neutrogena's or as attractive as L'Oreal's, Olay has come a long way from its star product being a soft pink lotion designed to make skin younger (yet it was and is just a badly formulated product that was out of date almost from the moment it was launched). Today's Olay lineup for those concerned about staving off the effects of aging skin is impressive, comprising their Regenerist, and Total Effects lines. All of these (and several other Olay products) contain the B vitamin niacinamide. As you might expect, the claims made for it are inflated, but, as explained in the various reviews below, niacinamide is a very helpful ingredient for all skin types, capable of exerting multiple benefits. It isn't the best ingredient out there (no single ingredient has that title yet, and it's unlikely that just one ever will be) and as such doesn't deserve the prominence Olay gives it (a bit of variety would have been far better, such as a mix of antioxidants and skin-identical ingredients).

Olay's sales are expected to reach $4 billion annually in the next few years, and given their global presence in stores and constant advertising in magazines and on television, that's not surprising. Much of this advertising is focused on their best products, which is attention well deserved. Just to give you an idea of the expenditure involved for these ubiquitous ads, Olay spent over $50 million to promote Regenerist in 2003. The good news is that each new range of Olay products generally improves on what came before it, offering results that, while not as impressive as the claims, are noticeable in the mirror.

For its ongoing commitment to understanding consumers and formulating products that, while not perfect, definitely offer more proof than puffery, Olay deserves consideration by any savvy skin-care shopper. And it also deserves mention that Olay is one of the few lines in this book whose entire collection of products with sunscreens provides sufficient UVA protection! (Sources for the financial figures above: The Rose Sheet, July 10, 2006, page 5; September 11, 2006, page 4; and January 1, 2007, page 5).

Olay began 2009 with the launch of Pro-X, their most expensive products to date. Not only are these products considerably more expensive than any others from Olay, the packaging, color scheme, advertising campaign, and claims have all been turned up to "max" on the cosmetics marketing dial. The amount of hype and budget thrown at these products easily explains why our Beautypedia product request e-mail inbox has been inundated with requests for me to review these products!

Whenever something this sleek-looking and pricey debuts in the mass market, lots of consumers wonder whether the extra expense is worth it. They also want to know if Olay's "Professional" designation makes these products a cut above the numerous other products they sell, including those with similar claims.

It turns out we had the same question after surveying the ingredient lists for all of the Pro-X products: How are they different from those available in Olay's Total Effects and Regenerist? Supposedly, all of those other sub-brands also have the answer to improving the telltale signs of aging, from dryness and wrinkles to loss of luminosity and unwanted discolorations. In fact, the claims on the label of these three lines are virtually identical.

It is clear from the get go that there are far more similarities than differences among Definity, Regenerist and Pro-X. All of them contain niacinamide, the B vitamin that has almost single-handedly re-energized Olay as a formidable skin-care brand. One of the Pro-X products contains acetyl glucosamine, just like several from Definity, and many Pro-X products contain peptides, just as Regenerist products do. Why should someone consider Pro-X over those other lines?

Interestingly, the folks we spoke with at Procter & Gamble didn't have a clear answer either, which isn't surprising, at least not from a formula superiority standpoint. Rather, their explanation was all about a marketing decision. This "cosmeceutical" –oriented line is supposed to give women who think that a line that looks medical must be better even if it's available at the drugstore. Pro-X was also designed to appeal to women who typically seek professional skin-care products, meaning those that are sold or recommended by a dermatologist or cosmetic surgeon.

Of course there is no standardized definition for "professional skin care" and "cosmeceutical" is a bogus term. The dermatologists who consulted Olay about these new products are well-respected, but the formulas still come up short in terms of a cocktail of antioxidants and skin-identical ingredients that can repair damaged skin. As it turns out, despite the Alliance for Skin Care Innovation that Olay speaks of in their promotional materials for Pro-X, its creation had more to do with marketing than with bringing anything new to the cosmetics table.

Don't get me wrong: the Pro-X products have some commendable attributes and certainly offer multiple benefits for aging skin, but the truth is they're not different enough from Olay Regenerist or Definity products to warrant the higher price.

Pro-X's packaging is indeed sexier, the claims are more enticing, and the prices speak to a high-end consumer, but, to borrow a popular catchphrase from the 1980s, we were left wondering "Where's the beef?" The beef, as it were, is merely Olay creating products whose differences are much stronger from a marketing standpoint than from a formulary standpoint. That's not breakthrough news for your skin, and it's a fact that anyone considering Pro-X should know that other Olay products offer comparable benefits for less money. The only significant difference between Pro-X and Olay's other sub-brands is that Pro-X is fragrance-free; that's great, but you would think that leaving out an ingredient as opposed to adding one would lead to a price decrease rather than an increase. It's up to you if that point is enough to make the higher prices worthwhile.

For more information about Olay, owned by Procter & Gamble, call (800) 285-5170 or visit www.olay.com.

Member Comments

Summary of Member Comments

  1. How would you rate the results? (4 = Best)

    3 / 4 Good
  2. Was this product a good value? (4 = Best)

    3 / 4 Good
  3. Would you recommend this product? (4 = Best)

    3 / 4 Good
Page of 1
  1. Erna H
    Reviewed on Thursday, July 10, 2014
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    Soothing
    • I've got this serum after Beautypedia's review. I've got dry skin around eyes and cheeks and oily t zone. I needed something for the dry area as my spf30 bb cream wasn't hydrating enough by itself. It's very silky, gives hydrated feel but it's not shiny. It stays smooth all day. I've noticed it works great with occasional breakouts, helps soothe skin, helps it heal faster. It's missing the vitamins and antioxidants, but for that we have great choices within Paula's skincare products ;-)

  2. MAngulo
    Reviewed on Tuesday, April 29, 2014
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    • Value
      4 / 4
    Amazing!
    • I feel like results with this serum are instant! Overnight, my skin calmed down, breakouts reduced and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation decreased. Feels soo goood when applying too! Also, very moisturizing for a serum. I still use a moisturizer because my skin is dry/sensitive though.

  3. Anonymous
    Reviewed on Saturday, April 05, 2014
    • Value
      1 / 4
    • Results
      1 / 4
    • Recommend
      1 / 4
    Not BEST anymore
    • I have used this product for years and absolutely loved it. I went to buy more yesterday and discovered Olay had changed the formula. By removing the paraben and adding the formaldehyde-based ingredient, I can no longer even use this product. As soon as I put it on my face I could tell the difference. It created a slight burning feeling right away. Into the garbage it goes.

  4. Tamie C.
    Reviewed on Wednesday, December 04, 2013
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    Feels great on skin
    • This glides over your skin and the finish is lovely - neither greasy or overly moist. My skin feels smooth and it pairs well with all my other skin care products and makeup. Two pumps takes care of my face and neck and any residual goes on my hands. Most other serums out there are too costly to apply this liberally let alone use on my hands! I like this so much that I've dropped one of my expensive dept store serums from my routine and have substituted this in its place.

  5. Tilde C.
    Reviewed on Thursday, October 17, 2013
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    • Value
      4 / 4
    I will buy it again
    • I've normal and sensitive skin, and I've been using Olay's "Regenerist Regenerating Serum Fragrance-Free" twice a day for 2 weeks now. It is easy to apply and leaves a perfect finish! Perfect = weightless, matte but not too matte, shiny but not too shiny. I have seen great improvements in my skin after I started using this serum and I will definitely buy it again, and again, and again. Thank you, Lil, for letting me know that I could find a 3.4 oz bottle at Costo for a more reasonable price!

  6. Kelly
    Reviewed on Monday, September 16, 2013
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    An Absolute Must-Have!
    • My dermatologist recommended this several years ago, & I've been using the fragrance-free version daily under SPF 30 moisturizer ever since. The texture is elegant, & leaves my skin silky-smooth. I also use it under my eyes & on my neck. My skin looks great, & I think the Olay Regenerating Serum is one reason why. One caveat ~ don't use too much, or it "pills."

  7. Lil
    Reviewed on Sunday, August 04, 2013
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    Regenerist Regenerating Serum Fragrance-Free
    • I've been using this product for years. I started with the orginal one, then switched to the fragrance free one as fragrance is not good for the skin. It feels silky going on and you don't need a lot on your face. Just two pumps, one for face, and one for neck. FYI, if there's a Costco near you, you might find it in a larger bottle, 3.4oz instead of 1.7oz for less than drugstore prices. I'm in my upper 60s and attribute my good complexion to the Serum and Super City Block #40 from Clinique.

  8. jeme
    Reviewed on Wednesday, May 01, 2013
    • Results
      4 / 4
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    Wonderful
    • This is fantastic. Only been using about a month and have a notable improvement to my skin. Retinol is a great thing and I am totally new to it. Go PC for making another awesome product. My skin is very sensitive and it loves this product. Glides on like a dream. Not oily feeling at all. I will enjoy using this as part of my ongoing skincare regime. Great job team Paula.

  9. DIANE H.
    Reviewed on Monday, January 28, 2013
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    My All-time Favorite!
    • I've been using this serum for years. I've tried other serums from time to time but I always come back to Olay Regenerist. Nothing else comes close to the elegant texture and silkiness of this product. I hate heavy products that feel greasy on my combination skin. This has a weightless, almost dry finish that makes it a perfect moisturizer under makeup.

  10. GinnyCat
    Reviewed on Saturday, January 05, 2013
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    Awesome serum!
    • I've been using this product since it was first introduced into the market, and I truly love it. It has kept my skin so youthful, and it feels great on my face! It really does run circles around other products as far as providing a very silky base for makeup! I've passed on my hearty recommendation to other friends who have tried it and who also have had great results with it.

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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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