Clinical Peel & Reveal Dermal Resurfacer

$58 - 3.4 fl. oz.
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Skin Care > Scrubs > Scrubs
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This tube-packaged product aims to provide manual exfoliation from aluminum oxide crystals and “chemical” exfoliation from pumpkin enzymes and the alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) ingredient lactic acid.

As it turns out, this is more a scrub for oily skin than anything else—it’s not a peel per se because the amount of lactic acid is likely too low to exfoliate, and the pumpkin enzymes are, at best, an unreliable way to exfoliate. They’re unreliable because enzymes are extremely unstable in cosmetic formulations and unlikely to be of much benefit in a product like this, which is meant to be rinsed from the skin after only a few minutes. Also, there’s no research proving pumpkin enzymes are effective for exfoliation.

There isn’t much else to say about this product, other than that as a scrub (which is really the only exfoliating ingredient in this ridiculously expensive product), it will leave skin feeling softer and smoother, assuming you use it gently and rinse thoroughly. For certain, this overpriced scrub is not preferred to the results you can achieve from a well-formulated AHA or BHA exfoliant, and there are certainly less expensive “scrubs” that work as well if not better than this one.

  • As with most scrubs, this leaves skin feeling soft and smooth when used gently.
  • Expensive for what’s essentially a glorified scrub.
  • The AHA lactic acid is likely present in an amount that’s too low to exfoliate.
  • The pumpkin enzymes are unreliable exfoliants due to their inherent stability issues.

Instantly transform your skin with this intensive anti-aging three-in-one resurfacer: peel with alpha hydroxy acid, exfoliate with pumpkin enzyme, and polish with aluminum oxide.

Water, Alumina, Cucurbita Pepo (Pumpkin), Glycerin, Lactobacillus/Pumpkin Ferment Extract, Lactic Acid, Diazolidinyl, Urea, Retinyl Palmitate (Vitamin A), Sodium Hyaluronate, Carbomer, Propylene Glycol, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Sodium Hydroxide, Fragrance

Unique in the world of spa and salon specialty lines, Peter Thomas Roth is a large but straightforward line with mostly uncomplicated formulations that, for the most part, are quite good and state-of-the-art. Unlike many product lines, most of the acne, AHA, BHA, sunscreen, and moisturizing products contain what they should to be effective and helpful for skin.

A novel aspect of this line is that there are few (if any) nonsense ingredients. Roth products conspicuously lack the exotic, potentially irritating, sensitizing, and often unnecessary plant extracts and the irritating, fragrant plant oils that show up in most pricey skin-care lines, especially spa lines. Many of these products don't have fragrance, and they lack the long lists of ingredients that are often unnecessarily complicated. Even more impressive are the well-formulated cleansers, sunscreens, AHA products, and skin lighteners. The moisturizers have improved somewhat, and most are now packaged so that the light- and air-sensitive ingredients remain stable. In fact, Roth's packaging deserves special mention because it is exceptionally utilitarian and gender-friendly. No pretty pink bottles, sexy curved jars, or bejeweled caps—all of which reinforce the clinical nature of Peter Thomas Roth. Overall, this line should be admired for its simplicity and, for the most part, for its well-thought-out formulations.

After all that glowing praise there are a few embarrassing missteps to avoid, such as products that contain hydrogen peroxide, which can cause free-radical damage and hurt skin; irritating acne products that contain sulfur; unimpressive masks (odd for a spa-oriented line); and a bumper crop of products claiming to affect expression lines and wrinkles in a manner similar to cosmetic corrective procedures.

For more information about Peter Thomas Roth, call (800) PTR-SKIN or visit

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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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