The only thing perfect about this night cream from L'Oreal is the name. Words fail us to accurately convey how utterly disappointing Age Perfect Cell Renewal Night Cream is. The formula offers little more than a water, mineral oil, and wax base that is as dated a moisturizer base as you can get. Even more frustrating is the amount of skin-irritating fragrance it contains and the almost nonexistent amount of bona-fide anti-aging ingredients. Adding insult to injury is the jar packaging which means the miniscule amount of air-sensitive ingredients it contains (i.e. antioxidants) would start deteriorating once it is opened. See More Info for details about jar packaging and why daily use of highly fragrant products is a problem for skin.
The product claims to speed surface skin cell renewal revealing millions of new skin cells each day. How this product is supposed to do that isn't clear but it does contain a small amount of salicylic acid which, when properly formulated, can exfoliate dead skin cells. However, there isn't enough salicylic acid in this product to exfoliate, plus the pH is too high which also reduces its ability to achieve increase cell turnover rate.
By the way, it isn't a stretch to make the skin cell renewal claim anyway regardless of the formula as skin naturally sheds millions of cells every day. How much help the skin needs in terms of exfoliation to remove the buildup of accumulated dead skin cells as a result of sun damage or oily skin isn't measurable.
This moisturizer contains the plant extract Vigna aconitifolia seed extract (moth bean extract) that is supposed to be similar in some respect to retinol (vitamin A). However there is no research showing that to be the case. Some companies claim that it is more stable and of course more natural than retinol but well formulated retinol products in air-resistant packaging are extremely stable. If anything, plant extracts are far less stable; think of how long a head of lettuce lasts in your refrigerator!
While we usually don't criticize products for containing coloring agents it is something more and more companies are staying away from because other than contributing a different pleasing tint there is no benefit to these synthetic ingredients. It may look pretty in the container but it imparts nothing to skin. In a product like this that is almost void of anything beneficial the addition of even more useless ingredients seemed important to mention.
Actually, it's not words that fail us when trying to describe Age Perfect Cell Renewal Night Cream from L'Oreal, it's just that there isn't anything redeeming to say about it other than to suggest you stay away or proceed with lowered expectations.
- The mineral oil and other emollients will make skin feel smoother and softer.
- Dated mineral oil and wax based formula.
- Miniscule amount of beneficial ingredients.
- Overly fragranced which can cause irritation.
- The form of salicylic acid and pH doesn't facilitate exfoliation.
Irritation from Fragrance: 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).
Jar Packaging: The fact that this product is packaged in a jar means the beneficial ingredients won't remain stable once it is opened. All plant extracts, vitamins, antioxidants, and most 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 present a hygiene issue because even if you wash your hands or use a spatula to remove the product, you're introducing bacteria that causes further breakdown of key 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; and www.beautypackaging.com/articles/2007/03/airless-packaging.php).