Before we discuss this red-tinted moisturizer’s formula, we need to state that the name is just silly. “Laser-free” is supposed to imply laser treatments a dermatologist performs, but really it means that this product is free of lasers. Well, duh! Come on, Peter Thomas Roth, have a little more respect for consumers. Anything that’s not a laser is, by definition, laser-free!
Here’s why skin-care products cannot work like a laser to improve signs of aging: lasers use specific colors and calibrated wavelengths of light which, when properly administered (by a trained medical professional) target and break up pigment cells and/or broken blood vessels (capillaries) in the lower layers of your skin. When these specific colors are targeted, the results work from the lower layers of your skin (beyond where cosmetics can reach) to the surface, so you’ll see signs of redness and brown discolorations go away (or at least noticeably fade).
Because laser treatments essentially wound skin in a carefully controlled manner, they stimulate cells in skin that manufacture healthy collagen, which helps improve wrinkles and enhance firmness. Lots of skin-care ingredients can stimulate healthy collagen production (and when skin isn’t being damaged by sunlight and other aggressors it loves making healthy collagen on its own) but the type of collagen stimulation you get from laser treatments is beyond where skin-care ingredients can target. The best solution is to combine a state-of-the-art skin-care routine (which includes daily sun protection) with the appropriate cosmetic corrective procedures, be they laser or dermal fillers.
What about the red resin Dragon’s blood that’s said to be a “centuries old native secret” (though clearly the secret is out)? It’s extracted from a fruit that is part of the history of Chinese medicine. It has long been used as a coloring agent for pottery and ceramics. Are you sensing that none of this has to do with anti-aging or wrinkles? You’re right, it doesn’t! In fact, we couldn’t come up with a single viable study or other piece of information proving dragon’s blood resin has any benefit for skin, aging or not. It seems to be a gimmicky, novel ingredient but that’s about it. And of course, there’s no association between dragon’s blood and laser treatments!
Beyond the dragon’s blood being a whole lot of nothing, this moisturizer contains a very good blend of ingredients for all skin types. Silky silicones are joined by cell-communicating ingredient niacinamide and a range of antioxidant plant extracts, some of which are fragrant (which isn’t skin caring). Unfortunately, most of those ingredients, plus the peptides, won’t remain stable because this moisturizer is packaged in a jar. 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 which further deteriorate the beneficial ingredients. In the end, the only powerful element of this moisturizer is the dent your beauty budget will take if you purchase it.
This powerful, deeply nourishing, high-tech, pink gel-cream dramatically helps improve the appearance of skin texture, tone & clarity. Helps diminish the appearance of fine lines & wrinkles leaving skin radiant and younger looking. Advanced formula is infused with Dragon’s Blood (a red resin drawn from the Amazon’s Croton Lechleri tree, a centuries old native secret).
Ingredients: Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Isododecane, Polysilicone-11, Glycerin, Water, Niacinamide, Cyclohexasiloxane, Isohexadecane, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Fruit Extract, Papaver Rhoeas Petal Extract, Spathodea Campanulata Flower Extract, Prunus Serrulata Flower Extract, Orchis Masculata Extract, Citrullus Vulgaris (Watermelon) Fruit Extract, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Lens Esculenta (Lentil) Fruit Extract, Croton Lechieri, Hylocereus Undatus Fruit Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate, Sodium PCA, Sodium Lactate, Caffeine, Siloxanetriol Alginate, Butylene Glycol, Palmitoyl Hexapeptide-14, Ethoxydiglycol, Ammonium Polyacryloyldimethyl Taurate, Polysorbate 80, Polysorbate 20, Diazolidinyl Urea, Propylene Glycol, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Butylparaben, Ethylparaben, Isobutylparaben, Phenoxyethanol, Sodium Metabisulfite, Carmine
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 www.peterthomasroth.com.