SD Advanced Intensive Concentrate for Wrinkles and Stretch Marks

Price:
$139 - 4.5 fl. oz.
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Category:
Skin Care > Sensitive Skin Products > Anti-Cellulite/Firming Products
Last Updated:
3/10/2014
Jar Packaging:
No
Tested On Animals:
Yes

The original StriVectin-SD product made a huge media splash not only for its alleged ability to eliminate stretch marks, but also for its infamous ads that asked whether this skin-care product was "Better Than Botox?" Of course, it wasn't, and the company never published any peer-reviewed research proving otherwise, but that didn't stop millions of consumers from rushing out to see if StriVectin really worked as claimed.

Not surprisingly, it didn't work on wrinkles even remotely like Botox does, and now the company is on their third version of what was once touted as a formula that rivals one of the most popular (and safe) cosmetic corrective procedures. Despite that disappointment, we're pleased to state that the latest version of StriVectin is an anti-aging powerhouse that contains a very good mix of beneficial ingredients for normal to dry skin not prone to breakouts. It contains a great mix of emollient moisturizing agents, cell-communicating ingredients, repairing ingredients, and antioxidants, all packaged to keep the light- and air-sensitive ingredients stable during use.

The previous formula's weakness was the inclusion of skin irritant peppermint oil, but it's gone from the latest version, hence our revised rating. You can now consider StriVectin as a formidable moisturizer to add to your anti-aging routine, although it remains on the pricey side despite its larger-than-normal size.

What keeps SD Advanced Intensive Concentrate for Wrinkles and Stretch Marks from earing our top rating is the inclusion of fragrant ginger root extract along with fragrance ingredient cinnamic acid, both of which pose a risk of irritation, although these potentially problematic ingredients are outnumbered by the good ingredients (Sources: Chemical Research in Toxicology, February 2014, ePublication; and www.naturaldatabase.com). Ginger root is one of those plant extracts with research showing it has benefits and risks for skin; oddly, the chief benefit is reducing inflammation—something irritation causes.

One more comment: Despite the name, this product cannot treat or improve stretch marks. The claims of targeting collagen are all well and good, but stretch marks are not about stimulating collagen; rather, stretch marks are about broken bands of elastin beneath the skin. Sadly, these elastin bands cannot be repaired once snapped. Find out more about what works and what doesn't work for stretch marks here.

Pros:
  • Emollient but non-greasy moisturizer.
  • Loaded with beneficial anti-aging ingredients.
  • Several of the helpful ingredients this contains have solid research supporting their use.
Cons:
  • Cannot eliminate or even moderately improve stretch marks (which are not about collagen damage).
  • The ginger root and cinnamic acid pose a slight risk of irritation.

Formulated with Collagex-CE Wrinkle Repair Complex, this hydrating moisturizer harnesses the latest advances in skincare science to target Collagen III, also known as youth collagen, for even more powerful anti-aging results.

Aqua (Water, Eau), Glycerin, Myristyl Nicotinate, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Isocetyl Stearate, Isodecyl Neopentanoate, Dimethicone, Glyceryl Stearate, Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil, PEG-100 Stearate, Propanediol, Butylene Glycol, Cetearyl Alcohol, Behenyl Alcohol, Polyacrylamide, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Palmitoyl Tripeptide-38, Panthenol, Bisabolol, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice Powder, Zingiber Officinale (Ginger) Root Extract, Methyl Glucoside Phosphate Proline Lysine Copper Complex, Resveratrol, Hydrolyzed Hyaluronic Acid, Cyathea Medullaris Leaf Extract, Phaseolus Lunatus (Green Bean) Seed Extract, Rutin, Arachidyl Alcohol, Caprylyl Glycol, Saccharide Isomerate, C13-14 Isoparaffin, Ethylhexylglycerin, Hydroxypropyl Cyclodextrin, Cetyl Hydroxyethylcellulose, Ceteth-10 Phosphate, Dicetyl Phosphate, Arachidyl Glucoside, Laureth-7, Aminomethyl Propanol, Dipotassium Phosphate, Xanthan Gum, Glyceryl Caprylate, Cinnamic Acid, Levulinic Acid, Sodium Levulinate, Stearic Acid, Lactic Acid, Tetrasodium EDTA, BHT, Parfum (Fragrance), Mica, CI 77891 (Titanium Dioxide), CI 77491 (Iron Oxide), Citric Acid, Sodium Citrate, Phenoxyethanol, Benzyl Alcohol, Benzoic Acid, Sorbic Acid, Chlorphenesin

We had previously written about the original StriVectin-SD, when a reader asked about its ability to repair stretch marks. That was StriVectin's initial claim to fame, though the fame was all self-promoted, as there is not a single independent, peer-reviewed study to prove that StriVectin is an effective option for repairing stretch marks. The studies that do exist about StriVectin's benefits for stretch marks were paid for by Klein-Becker, the company that distributes StriVectin (and is associated with Bremenn Research Labs, which has a growing history of trouble with the FDA and various watchdog advertising organizations).

According to the company's ads, they were surprised to find that not only was StriVectin-SD getting rid of women's stretch marks, but also that somehow their facial wrinkles were going away, too. This discovery lead to the astounding "antiwrinkle breakthrough of the decade." What followed were the now-famous magazine ads that posed the question of whether StriVectin was "Better Than Botox?" Not surprisingly, this ad captured the attention of millions of people concerned with mitigating signs of aging "without painful injections".

Regrettably, no supportive research needs to be available to sell this kind of hyperbole. All it takes is to promise women that a product will get rid of their wrinkles and they will buy it in droves, no matter how many other product lines, infomercials, advertisements, or cosmetics salespeople pledge the exact same thing. StriVectin isn't and was never "better than Botox"!

Of course, now the original, lauded StriVectin-SD product has been replaced by what the company describes as a "super-charged comprehensive skin repair cream for stretch marks, wrinkles, and aging skin". It seems there's no aging skin concern this product cannot address, but as it turns out, the updated formula presents the same drawbacks as the original, although it is arguably a better formulation (just not for stretch marks).

As for the rest of the StriVectin line, it contains proportionately more misses than hits. It isn't the anti-wrinkle answer and in fact some of their products contain the type of irritating ingredients that hurt your skin's ability to look and function in a younger manner.

For more information about StriVectin, call 1-800-430-0227 or visit www.strivectin.com.

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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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