This stuff is pretty great, especially for the price. I notice improvement in my skin's overall feel and appearance after using this for a week. The top three ingredients are: purified water, argireline, and Matrixyl 3000. Wow, not bad. You can pay triple the price for a similar cream with Matrixyl 3000 WAY further down the list.
I didn't notice much difference the day after using it and after a couple of weeks I had a horrible cystic breakout and this is the only thing I had been experimenting with. I returned it. I still love the day cream.
First off, I love this product so much. I have been using it for over three years, and it has not made my acne-prone skin break out once. It is the only drugstore skincare product I own because it is the only one with decent ingredients that perform as good as a high-end brand like Caudalie. I also tried the toner (which I recommend), mask, and day cream. I don't recommend the mask and day cream because of the silicones high up on the ingredient list as well as petrolatum. Also, the day cream has low SPF of 15.
The price is ridiculously cheap. There are night creams that sell for over $200. I mean, you get 4.8 fl oz for just $20! This jar lasts for over a year with daily use. On sale, you can find it for as low as $10. On Walgreens Web site, you can get it for $15.
This is the only face cream I've ever hit the bottom of and have needed to repurchase! The reason for this is three-fold. First, most moisturizers would make my face oilier over time (oil slick in day time? no thanks). Second, most moisturizers have some synthetic ingredient that would start clogging my pores. Third, most moisturizers didn't improve my skin noticeably, so I had less incentive to use it every night.
WHO IT WILL WORK BEST FOR: People with normal, combination, sensitive, or acne-prone skin. People with oily skin may find it too emollient, and people with extra dry skin may not find it emollient enough. I am right in the middle (only getting dry skin when I use too much tea tree oil), so it fits my skin needs perfectly. The only times I want more moisture is when I get a peel done (it just sinks right in and disappears), so that leads me to believe that people with super dry skin may not find it hydrating enough.
(For people with oily skin, all hope is not lost. Use a gentle cleanser like Ren's Mayblossom one which will balance AND not dry your skin out at the same time. After using that cleanser consistently for a couple of months, my skin is now normal. Normal skin is perfect for this moisturizer. For people with really dry skin, at least try the sample to see if it will work for you. If it doesn't work, maybe layering an emollient oil underneath will make it just right for you.)
I hope to be a lifetime customer of this night cream. I've tried a lot of natural moisturizers as well as even very expensive ones (La Mer), and in my opinion, NOTHING comes close to the results I get with this. My skin is noticeably plump and smooth every morning following the use of this, never oily. If you have have acne scars, it will make them plump following the use and so a lot less visible the next day. You literally look like you just went to bed with 10 hours of sleep and a dinner of salmon and spinach. If I could just slather on coconut oil on my face and call it a day, I would. However, like I said, my face reacts to anything and everything. My skin loves this stuff! Literally the only improvement they could make is if they sold it with a pump or in a tube.
Now, since I plan on being a lifetime purchaser, I wanted to do research of all the ingredients used in it. These are listed in order of the way it is printed on the box.
* = has minimal to moderate concern (note that most of the * ingredients are used the least, the top two * ingredients do not have much research on them and that's the only reason they warrant an *)
EWG = Environmental Working Group (0 score - perfect, 5 - moderate risk, 9 score - dangerous)
PURIFIED WATER - EWG of 0
ARGIRELINE* - not much on this ingredient in the way of scientific study, but I found this on a critical Web site of a product selling for $75 that contained it: The miracle ingredient in this lightweight lotion is Argireline, which is the trade name for the synthetically derived peptide called acetyl hexapeptide-3. The company selling acetyl hexapeptide-3, an ingredient manufacuter based in Spain and, according to their Web site, "Argireline works through a unique mechanism which relaxes facial tension leading to a reduction in superficial facial lines and wrinkles with regular use." No data on EWG.
MATRIXYL 3000* - I know that this ingredient was once used in the natural brand Mychelle's product. They took it out recently, but for unknown reasons, maybe because long-term results aren't documented. It is a synthetic ingredient used for anti-ageing, an anti-wrinkle complex according to Sederma (the company responsible for this ingredient)
No data on EWG on this.
SQUALENE - natural moisturizer, EWG score of 0
CETYL ALCOHOL - used as emollient, emulsifier, or thickening agent, EWG rating of 1
CAPRYLIC/CAPRIC TRIGLYCERIDE - EWG rating of 0-1
GLYCERINE - used for improving smoothness, lubrication, and as a humectant. EWG of 0
AVOCADO OIL - good, EWG score of 0
GRAPE SEED EXTRACT - good, EWG of 0-1
GLYCERYL STEARATE - eco certified and safe, EWG score of 0
PEG-100 STEARATE* - rated 3 (low risk) on EWG's site
POLYACRYLAMIDE* - 4 (fair score) on EWG's site
PHENOXYETHANOL* - preservative, scored 4 (fair score) on EWG's site
C12-14 ISOPARAFFIN - solvent, scored 1 on EWG's site
GRAPE SEED MASK* - (I'm guessing just a concoction of grapes?)
LAURETH-7* - emulsifying agent, EWG score of 3
METHYLISOTHIAZOLINONE* - EWG score of 5 (moderate risk), preservative
I was so lazy to write review, 1 of the reasons is English not my native language then. ^^;; However I've been using this cream for nearly 2 years now, and dont wanna replace it as long as they keep this reasonable price! I started using antin-aging creams 6 years ago, and tried from pricey brand names (Dermalogica, Olay, Shiseido, Clinique) to cheaper ones (Joppa, Nivea, Hada Labo..); since then my skin has no big problem (no lines, no sagging) but still got thinner with few tiny spider veins showing off that irritating! Now I discovered a routine really worked to prevent aging AMAP for the future; that is natural oils like rosehip seed oil, argan oil, collagen pills, and, off course, sunblock. They get along so well with Merlot line. I prefer the night cream to the day one. It's more nourishing with grapeseed oil, Matrixyl (?) yet absorb quickly and moisturize enough. My skin seems healthier than 2 years ago, and I still look younger than my age, that's all I need. Maybe the good result is mostly from the rosehip seed oil, who know, but I've never found a cheaper moisturizer with a fair amount of anti-oxidants. I do know some organic lines free from harmful chemicals, but very costly like Pangea Organics, Juice Beauty, I rather choose Merlot and invest in supplement tablets.
My hubby started using this and he's getting comments from the guys about what is it that he's using!
I started using this a few months ago. I sometimes use my Lancome Genefique under this to add moisture. No where on the Merlot label does it say that it moisturizes (just says helps to retain moisture). If you want moisture/hydration use something else. This cream "promotes collagen formation and helps to reduce deep lines and wrinkles" and I am happy to report that it's doing that for both me and the hubby!
It's a bit pricey - I paid $19.99 at Walgreens, but it works for me. I also use it on my hands at night. BTW - this is always out at my Walgreens. I've been trying to get it for a few weeks now since we are running low, and when I walked into Walgreens yesterday they only had three left on the shelf.
The packaging is nothing special, but again, I'm all about quality and results and I don't really care what the label looks like.
I love this! One day when I couldn't find my daytime moisturizer I threw this on, and realized after about a week of doing that my skin looked radiant! perhaps I will buy the matching day cream! It is super moisturizing, totally worth the 14$ at walgreens!
Absolutely amazing. This cream has done more for my skin in one week than any other cream I have ever used. All the others I have tried have all been disappointments; and trust me I have tried a bunch. I've wasted a lot of money on moisturizers and never felt like they truly hydrated my skin. I have found my HG moisturizer and there is no need to look any further. I would buy this stuff by the tub just to slather it all over my body. Fine lines that I thought would never go away have disappeared. It is truly a miracle product to me and I hope they never stop making it. I bought the regular jar and not the "Moonlight Radiance" at Walgreens.
Woohoo!!! I'm so glad I got to try this stuff! As a pretty cheap girl, I didn't want to spend the $20 on this moisturizer just to potentially hate it. Luckily, I won a Facebook contest and received this in my gift bag. An let me say... It's absolutely divine.
I have VERY acne prone skin. My face can break out within minutes of putting something on my face.. But this stuff just soothes it and plumps it right up! I also find that it absorbs crazy fast, leaving me with a matte surface to start my foundation makeup.
Try it. You'll thank me later.
I originally got this in a beauty sample box. I have a hard time finding good night creams since too often it will go on wellin the evening but I end up waking up to oily and greasy skinthe next morning. This was fantastic! It wasn't too thick going on but moisturized well. It didn't feel tight to me like I've read on other comments. I woke up feeling moisturized without feeling oily. Best part is that it smells great. Again, I loved it. Very refreshing
Horrible produdct! It gave me cystic acne and dried out my face really bad. I can't tell if it was the squalene (that's shark liver oil peoples) or the Matrixyl 3000 (whatever that is). EXPENSIVE for what it actually did. Sensitive skinned gals: avoid this product if you can.