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Rodin Olio Lusso At-A-Glance

Strengths: Each of the products contains a blend of oils or emollients that can help soften and smooth dry skin or lips.

Weaknesses: Expensive; every product contains fragrant oils that research has shown are detrimental to skin (although they do smell divine); the products have limited appeal as they are all oil-based and only suitable for dry skin (assuming you want to overlook the risk of irritation each product comes with).

Rodin Olio Lusso is a small line of boutique products created by celebrity stylist and former model and fashion editor Linda Rodin. One wonders what someone with her background knows about skin care formularies, but her fashion lineage helps explain why the products that bear her name get repeat mentions in the pages of Vogue and Harper's Bazaar. In any event, what Rodin created isn't a miracle or anything all that special. In fact, her product's emphasis on fragrance is not a wise approach, as the fragrant oils she uses, while natural, are also known to harm skin more than they help.

This line is all about simplicity but with that comes severe limitations. For example, there are no cleansers, no exfoliants, no sunscreens—just non-fragrant oils mixed with fragrant oils and some plant extracts. Rodin describes herself as low maintenance and that's fine, but that doesn't mean your skin-care routine cuts out the basics and doesn't take into account skin type or various skin conditions women struggle with, from acne to wrinkles, brown spots, rosacea, and on and on.

Without question, the non-fragrant plant oils these products contain are great for dry skin; these products are likely to make your skin feel quite smooth and silky, so if you're not seeing any problems from using them, then what's the harm? Well, the truth is that our skin is very good at hiding when it's being irritated. The problem is that the damage is still taking place beneath the skin, adding up over time and potentially leading to skin problems and unwanted changes down the road. Think of it like sun damage from UVA rays: you don't see or feel these "silent rays" damaging your skin yet the damage is steadily accumulating, leading to wrinkles, sagging, and an uneven skin tone with a damaged barrier.

We admit these products are appealing; they smell great and the simplicity can be refreshing after confronting routine after routine that seems too complicated or confusing. If only fragrance were skin care and if oils were all it took to have great skin, we'd be all set. Alas, that’s far from being the case and between this fact and Rodin's high prices, these products don't deserve serious consideration.

For more information about Rodin Olio Lusso, owned as of late 2014 by Estee Lauder, visit

585633-IIS5 v1.0.0.431 10/7/2015 5:04:23 AM