11.29.2012
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Ultra A Treatment Serum
Rating
1.69 fl. oz. for $72
Category:Skin Care > Serums > Serums
Last Updated:11.29.2012
Jar Packaging:No
pH:>5.00
Tested on animals:No
Review Overview

Ultra A Treatment Serum was formerly known as Antioxidant Serum; the new name is designed to spotlight the retinol in this lightweight moisturizer for normal to slightly dry skin. The retinol and other antioxidants are in short supply, while the pH above 5 keeps the salicylic acid from functioning as a truly effective exfoliant. Overall, this isn’t worth the money because it doesn’t compete well with far superior products for far less money.

Claims

Retinol, Bha and Vitamin C act as free radical scavengers providing an advanced formula for accelerated aged, pigmented or oily/acne skin.

Ingredients

Purified Water, Dimethicone, PEG-20 Methylglucose Sesquistearate, Stearyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, Ceteareth-20, Tocopheryl Acetate, PEG-20 Stearate, Zinc Oxide, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Methyl Glucose Sesquistearate, Ethylhexyl Stearate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Methyl Gluceth-20, Cetyl Alcohol, Green Tea Leaf Extract, PEG-100 Stearate, Panthenol, Tocopherol, Salicylic Acid, Willow Bark Extract, Bisabolol, Lauryl Pyrrolidone, Retinol, Cyclomethicone, PEG, Ascorbic Acid, Cetyl Dimethicone Copolyol, Hyaluronic Acid, Allantoin, Diazolidinyl Urea, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Disodium EDTA, BHA

Brand Overview

Ultraceuticals At-A-Glance

Strengths: Almost all the products are fragrance-free; one very good cleanser and some good vitamin C and retinol moisturizers; an effective AHA product with lactic acid; all the sunscreens provide sufficient UVA protection; stable packaging.

Weaknesses: Expensive; most of the AHA products have pH values too high for exfoliation to occur; irritating skin-lightening products; no effective products for acne-prone skin.

What a great name for a skin-care line! Not only does the "ultra" prefix speak to consumers looking for the best or most potent products, but also the "ceuticals" suffix lends a medicinal touch that is reminiscent of the emerging term "cosmeceuticals" (which is a marketing term that has no sanctioned validity or standards, so it can be applied to any product).

Ultraceuticals was the brainchild of Australian plastic surgeon Dr. Geoffrey Heber, whose vision to deliver "honest, clinically-proven skin care" back in 1991 was years ahead of the trend of doctors as skin-care salespeople. The company speaks readily of its ingredient technology, which is what the people behind it believe makes Ultraceuticals a cut above the rest. The clinical study results and before-and-after images provided in the company's catalog look convincing, but, as is usually the case, the details are left out. We don't know what product in their double-blind study was used as a control, we don't know what other products the study participants used prior to being treated with the Ultraceuticals cream, and the result (that topical vitamin C can improve the appearance of sun-damaged skin) is hardly revolutionary or exclusive to Ultraceuticals. It is well established that stabilized vitamin C applied topically (and consumed orally) can do this (Sources: The Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology, August 2005, pages 963–972; The Journal of Investigative Dermatology, February 2005, pages 304–307; and Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, January 2005, pages 4–9). Moreover, many, many other antioxidants have the same ability, including vitamin E, green tea, and retinol. In fact, many researchers believe that, regardless of the content of a single antioxidant in a product, a better approach is to use skin-care products that offer a blend of antioxidants. In that sense, Ultraceuticals falls a bit short.

Australians may be all abuzz about this skin-care line, and it is creeping into the United States. Yet aside from offering mostly fragrance-free products and consistently using packaging to keep light- and air-sensitive ingredients stable, it really isn't anything new under the sun. However, as you will see from the reviews below, there are a few star products to consider if the prices don't bother you.

For more information about Ultraceuticals, call (800) 339-5115 or visit www.ultraceuticals.com.

About the Experts

The new Beautypedia Team proudly and unequivocally maintains the commitment to help you find the best products possible for your skin. We do this by relentlessly pursuing and relying on published scientific research so you will have unbiased information on what works and what doesn't-and the sneaky ways you could be making your skin worse, not better!


The Beautypedia Team reviews all products using the same research, criteria, and objectivity, whether the product being reviewed is from Paula's Choice or another brand.

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