New Age Precision 8-in-1 Power Serum
1 fl. oz. for $33.95
Last Updated:07.27.2015
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:No
Review Overview

You may be drawn to the fragrance-free, water-based New Age Precision 8-in-1 Power Serum due to the beauty award it won and Marcelle's claim that it contains 14% peptides. A high amount of peptides sounds impressive, but that's actually not what you're getting here, at least not if the ingredient list is accurate—and we always assume it is. This serum contains four peptides, all of which are present in amounts that are likely well below 1%. That's not bad, as your skin can benefit from lesser amounts of peptides; it just makes the 14% boast, well, inaccurate. Unfortunately, beyond its marketing claims, the fact that it contains an iffy amount of skin-damaging alcohol makes this a less than attractive option to consider.

This serum owes its silky texture and "visible results from the 1st application" to the mix of silicones and silicone-enhanced film-forming agents it contains. Also on board are a good mix of water-binding agents, but antioxidants are lacking. For an anti-aging formula, you would want to see more in the way of ingredients such as green tea, vitamin C or any others of the dozens of potential alternatives that are research proven for their ability to protect and repair skin.

As mentioned earlier, this contains a troubling amount of alcohol. While not "alcohol based," there is enough here to be concerned about and that, combined with an overall average formula, keeps Marcelle's New Age Precision 8-in-1 Power Serum from earning a higher rating. See More Info for additional details on the risks of high amounts of alcohol in skincare products. For better alternatives that don't share this products shortcomings, see our list of Best Serums.

  • Fragrance-free and not overpriced.
  • Silky texture smoothes and hydrates.
  • Contains a good mix of water-binding agents.
  • The peptides, while not present at 14%, likely still have some anti-aging benefits.
  • Misleading claim about the total amount of peptides.
  • Formula lacks antioxidants, which all skin types need to look and act younger.
  • Contains a potentially problematic amount of alcohol.
More Info:

Alcohol-Based Skincare Products: Alcohol helps ingredients like retinol and vitamin C penetrate into the skin more effectively, but it does that by breaking down the skin's barrier—destroying the very substances that keep your skin healthy over the long term (Biochimica et Biophysica Acta, 2012 and Journal of Hospital Infection, 2003).

A significant amount of research shows alcohol causes free-radical damage in skin even at low levels (Biochimica et Biophysica Acta, 2012). Small amounts of alcohol on skin cells in lab settings (about 3%, but keep in mind skin-care products contain amounts ranging from 5% to 60% or greater) over the course of two days increased cell death by 26%. It also destroyed the substances in cells that reduce inflammation and defend against free radicals—this process actually causes more free-radical damage. If this weren't bad enough, exposure to alcohol actually causes skin cells to self-destruct (Alcohol, 2002).

Research also shows that these destructive, aging effects on skin cells increased the longer skin was exposed to alcohol; for example, two days of exposure was dramatically more harmful than one day, and that's at only a 3% concentration (Alcohol, 2002). In fact, the effect of inflammation in the skin is cumulative, and repeated exposure to irritants contributes to a weakened skin barrier, slower healing (including of red marks from breakouts), and a dull, uneven complexion (Aging, 2012 & Chemical Immunology and Allergy, 2012).

For more on alcohol's (as in, ethanol, denatured alcohol, and ethyl alcohol) effects on skin, see the Paula's Choice Research Team's Expert Advice article on the topic, Alcohol in Skin Care: The Facts.


The power to transform your skin in just 7 days. See visible results from the 1st application.


Aqua/Water, Cyclopentasiloxane, Glycerin, Propylene Glycol, Butylene Glycol, Alcohol, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Cyclohexasiloxane, Xylitylglucoside, Anhydroxylitol, Acmella Oleracea Extract, Hydroxypropyl Cyclodextrin, Mannitol, Xylitol, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Sorbitan Laurate, Palmitoyl Tripeptide-38, Acetyl Tetrapeptide-9, Tetrapeptide-26, Acetyl Dipeptide-1 Cetyl Ester, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Disodium EDTA, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Sodium Hydroxide, Diazolindinyl Urea.

Brand Overview

Marcelle At-A-Glance

Strengths: Inexpensive; Marcelle provides complete ingredient lists on its Web site; drugstores that retail this brand provide testers, including makeup testers; almost every product is fragrance-free; some good cleansers and makeup removers; impressive eyeshadows; great lipsticks and lip glosses.

Weaknesses: The hypoallergenic claims are misleading because this claim isn't regulated and there are no standards governing its use; formaldehyde-releasing preservatives not recommended for those with sensitive skin; the anti-acne products are mostly alcohol, which is damaging to skin and can increase oil production, making acne worse; dated moisturizer formulas; some greasy cleansers; a general lack of state-of-the-art ingredients; foundations with sunscreen do not provide sufficient UVA protection; average to poor mineral makeup; no shades for those with tan or darker complexions; mostly lackluster mascaras.

Nestled among the flashier lines filling the shelves and display cases in Canadian drugstores is this unassuming, attractively priced skin-care and makeup product line. The packaging is simple and the message clear: These are "hypoallergenic and perfume-free," ergo great for sensitive skin. In reality the claim that these products are hypoallergenic isn't accurate in the least—much like Almay—but that claim is Marcelle's major selling point.

First, the term "hypoallergenic" is not regulated; that is, there are no standards in place for that term so a cosmetics company can attribute hypoallergenic to any product they want, regardless of the ingredients. The second point is that even the most scrupulous company, even if it takes the greatest care about what ingredients it includes in its products, simply cannot know what your skin may be allergic to. Marcelle showcases the elimination of "perfume," (aka fragrance) but fragrance is not the only potential culprit in a cosmetic formulation. And third, allergic reactions are not the primary problems that a cosmetic can impart to skin. Irritation is far more pernicious and, indeed, many of Marcelle's products contain ingredients that have a high potential for causing irritation, such as alcohol, sodium lauryl sulfate, and formaldehyde-releasing preservatives (e.g., imidazolidinyl urea, DMDM hydantoin, and Quaternium 15; one of their products even contains hydrochloric acid. (Can you believe that?!) Irritating skin-care ingredients not only cause free-radical damage but also lead to an increase in oil production in the pore and break down collagen.

Aside from the erroneous claims, Marcelle hasn't kept up to speed with their formulas in comparison to several other lines at the drugstore. You can easily find moisturizers from other lines that have far more elegant textures and formulas teeming with beneficial ingredients just not from Marcelle. Almost every product Marcelle sells is woefully out of date; their rudimentary formulas are akin to using a typewriter instead of a computer.

Color-wise, you'll find the foundation, concealer, and powder shade ranges are limited to those with fair to medium skin tones. Although it's great that the Marcelle displays provide testers for the makeup, much of it is better left alone. There are some high points, particularly the powder eyeshadows, lipstick, and lip glosses, but the mascaras are barely exciting, the pencils all need sharpening, and the powder blush fails to impress.

All told, Marcelle is best viewed as a line with a few sleeper products worth checking out at price points that won't stress most consumers' budgets, although a few dollars more will get you infinitely better options.

For more information about Marcelle, call (800) 387-7710 or visit www.marcelle.com.

Note: *All prices are in Canadian dollars.

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.

Member Comments
Summary of Member Comments
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Surprising benefit....reduces oily shine!

I've been trying different serums lately, and this one very much surprised me. My skin is quite oily and blemish-prone. About 5 hours into any given day, my makeup has mostly melted and my face has that ugly, oily shine. I've only been using this one for a little over a week, but right from the start there was a big difference.....no shine!! My skin stays smooth and matte for at least 8 or 9 hours. I'm not even using a powder. This isn't one of the 8 "benefits" the serum claims, but it's there!

Reviewed by
Dawn M.
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