Here's yet another product touting the benefits of plant stem cells to help repair and restore skin. Though the idea sounds exciting, plant stem cells (such as the rose stem cells included in this mask) can't regenerate human stem cells – or any other cells in the body. Unless you want to become a rose, rose stem cells or any plant stem cells are not helpful for skin. See More Info to find out all the details about what stem cells can and can't do when it comes to treating your skin. Think of plant stem cells as plant extracts with some antioxidant potential, not the potential to transform your skin cells!
That aside, this artificially colored gel mask does feel soothing on skin, as most gel-type products do. It contains some antioxidants, anti-irritants, and skin-repairing ingredients, all of which benefit skin. Unfortunately, since this mask is packaged in a jar, many of those great ingredients won't stay stable after you twist off the lid. See More Info for why jar packaging is a problem with skin care products like this.
Also problematic is the inclusion of Rosa damascena flower oil, a fragrant plant extract that poses a risk of irritation. Though you're not leaving this on your face for an extended period of time, Peter Thomas Roth suggests using this for 10 minutes at a time, at least two or three times a week (and daily is also recommended) that's more than enough to make it a problem for skin in the long run. You're much better off looking into one of the more soothing and effective options on our list of Best Facial Masks.
Stem cells: Stem cells are cells in animals and plants that are capable of becoming any other type of cell in that organism and of producing more of those cells. Despite the fact that stem cell research is in its infancy, many cosmetics companies claim they are successfully using plant-based or human-derived stem cells in their anti-aging products. The claims run the gamut, from reducing wrinkles to elastin repair and cell regeneration, so the temptation for consumers to try these is intense.
The truth is that stem cells in skin-care products do not work as claimed. In fact, they likely have no effect at all because stem cells must be alive to function as stem cells. Once these delicate cells are added to skin-care products, they are long dead and, therefore, useless.
Plant stem cells, such as those derived from apples, melons, flowers, and rice, cannot stimulate stem cells in human skin, but because they are from plants these ingredients likely have antioxidant properties. Actually, it's a good thing plant stem cells can't work as stem cells in skin-care products; after all, you don't want your skin to absorb cells that can grow into apples or watermelons!
There are also claims that because a plant's stem cells allow a plant to repair itself or to survive in harsh climates, these benefits can be passed on to human skin. How a plant functions in nature is unrelated to human skin, and these claims are completely without substantiation.
Another twist on the issue is that cosmetics company's claim they have taken components (such as peptides) out of the plant stem cells and made them stable so they then can work as stem cells. This approach is not valid because stem cells must be complete to function normally. Even if you could isolate substances or extracts from these cells and make them stable, there is no published research showing they can affect stem cells in human skin.
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, vitamins, antioxidants, and other state-of-the-art ingredients break down in the presence of air, so 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 (Sources: Free Radical Biology and Medicine, September 2007, pages 818–829; Ageing Research Reviews, December 2007, pages 271–288; Dermatologic Therapy, September-October 2007, pages 314–321; International Journal of Pharmaceutics, June 12, 2005, pages 197–203; Pharmaceutical Development and Technology, January 2002, pages 1–32; International Society for Horticultural Science, www.actahort.org/members/showpdf?booknrarnr=778_5; Beautypackaging.com, and www.beautypackaging.com/articles/2007/03/airless-packaging.php).