Packaged in a tube with a dropper-tip, Ultrasmoothing Eye Serum is an anti-aging miss. Despite the fact this promises to "encourage collagen-producing activities", it contains quite a mix of irritating ingredients—namely witch hazel water (hamamelis virginiana), ginger extract (zingiber officinale), carrot extract (daucus carota), eucalyptus oil, and two forms of lavender oil. All of these are decidedly pro- not anti-aging! See More Info for the details on why these ingredients are such a problem in skin care.
Before we go on, it's worth noting that you may not even need a separate product for your eye area, which we discuss in detail in the More Info section.
What of Dermalogica's claim that they included an "advanced peptide" in this product? This "advanced peptide" is hexapeptide-11, a rather unusual choice given the lack of research demonstrating its effectiveness—and it certainly doesn't compare to longstanding (and proven) ingredients like vitamin C, retinol and other antioxidants or cell-communicating ingredients.
In short, hexapeptide-11 may sound flashy and interesting, but the substance just isn't there to warrant the claims made around it in products like this one.
If you are in the market for a product labelled for your eye area, the Ultrasmoothing Eye Serum is one you can skip (your skin will thank you) in lieu of the numerous alternatives in the Best Eye Moisturizers & Treatments section. Each product recommended contains a spectrum of beneficial anti-aging ingredients, along with formulas that are free of needless irritants. But before you check that list, see the More Info section to learn why you may not need a special product for the eye area.
- Aside from the smattering of antioxidants present, there aren't any pros to speak of.
- Contains numerous irritating ingredients (witch hazel water, ginger and fragrant oils to name a few) that could be considered "pro-aging".
- Lavender and eucalyptus oils make this especially problematic for use in the eye area.
- Expensive given the problematic formula and lack of research surrounding hexapeptid-11.
Why You May Not Need an Eye Serum: Most eye serums aren't necessary. That's either because they are poorly formulated, contain nothing special for the eye area, or come in packaging that won't keep key ingredients stable. Just because the product is labeled as an eye serum doesn't mean it's good for your eye area; in fact, many can actually make matters worse, as is the case for this one.
There is much you can do to improve signs of aging around your eyes. Any product loaded with antioxidants, skin-repairing ingredients, skin-lightening ingredients, anti-inflammatory ingredients, and effective emollients will work wonders and those ingredients don't have to come from a product labeled as an eye serum or eye cream. You would be shocked how many eye-area products lack even the most basic ingredients to help skin. For example, most eye creams don't contain sunscreen. During the day that is a serious problem because it leaves the skin around your eyes vulnerable to sun damage and this absolutely will make dark circles, puffiness, and wrinkles worse!
Whatever product you put around your eye area, regardless of what it is labeled, must be well formulated and appropriate for the skin type around your eyes! That may mean you need an eye cream, but you may also do just as well applying your regular facial moisturizer around your eyes.
Irritation from Fragrance and Fragrant Oils: Daily use of products that contain a high amount of fragrance, whether the fragrant ingredients are synthetic or natural, causes chronic irritation that can damage healthy collagen production, lead to or worsen dryness, and impair your skin's ability to heal. Fragrance-free is the best way to go for all skin types. If fragrance in your skin-care products is important to you, it should be a very low amount to minimize the risk to your skin (Sources: Inflammation Research, December 2008, pages 558–563; Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, June 2008, pages 124–135, and November-December 2000, pages 358–371; Journal of Investigative Dermatology, April 2008, pages 15–19; Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, March 2008, pages 78–82; Mechanisms of Ageing and Development, January 2007, pages 92–105; and British Journal of Dermatology, December 2005, pages S13–S22).
This powerful treatment fluid contains an advanced peptide known to encourage collagen-producing activities to help smooth fine lines and target the signs of aging around the delicate eye area.
Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Hamamelis Virginiana Water, PEG-60 Almond Glycerides, PEG-12 Dimethicone, PEG-150 Distearate, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Ascophyllum Nodosum Extract, Asparagopsis Armata Extract, Boerhavia Diffusa Root Extract, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Zingiber Officinale Root Extract, Sorbitol, Chrysanthellum Indicum Extract, Hexapeptide-11, Sodium Hyaluronate Crosspolymer, Daucus Carota Sativa Root Extract, Avena Sativa Kernel Extract, Anthemis Nobilis Flower Oil, Lavendula Spica Flower Oil, Eucalyptus Globulus Leaf Oil, Lavandula Hybrida Oil, Glycine Soja Oil, Potassium Jojobate, Bisabolol ,Tocopherol, Carum Petroselinum Seed Oil, Hydroxyphenyl Propamidobenzoic Acid, Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Pentylene Glycol Panthenol, Polysorbate 20, Beta-Carotene, Jojoba Alcohol, Propanediol, Disodium EDTA, Sodium Hydroxide, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Linalool, Limonene, Geraniol
Dermalogica's name implies a logical relationship to dermatology, which makes it sound as if you are getting serious skin care. The subtitle on their products is even more commanding: "A Skin Care System Researched and Developed by the International Dermal Institute." But what is the International Dermal Institute, you ask? Are there any dermatologists there? Apparently not: The International Dermal Institute is a Dermalogica-owned school for aestheticians who want an education beyond what is required for their cosmetology license, and the classes are taught by aestheticians.
Does the professional atmosphere of the school associated with Dermalogica mean better products? The proof is in the pudding, and this pudding is, for the most part, just Jell-O, not chocolate mousse. A company so concerned with skin-care education should be ashamed of itself for offering so many products that damage skin with known irritants and, more egregiously, offering so many sunscreens that lack sufficient UVA-protecting ingredients. Dermalogica's education-oriented, serious-minded, and clinical positioning doesn’t mesh with the majority of their products, and is on par with tobacco company executives teaching an aerobics class.
According to company history, the reason Dermalogica products came to be was that founder Jane Wurwand could not find a spa-oriented skin-care line that met her criteria. She was dismayed that so many skin-care lines aimed at the aesthetics market had products that contained alcohol, artificial colors, fragrance, mineral oil, and lanolin, ingredients that she believed had a well-documented history of problems. That's true for fragrance and alcohol (and artificial colors to a lesser extent), but mineral oil and lanolin have no documented history of causing skin problems. If anything, quite the opposite is true. Further, if Dermalogica's founders were so concerned about potentially or definitively harmful ingredients, why do their products contain so many of them? Where is the research proving that lavender oil, camphor, balm mint, arnica, ginger oil, and citrus oils are helpful for skin?
For more information about Dermalogica, call 1-800-345-2761 or visit www.dermalogica.com.