Basics of the product: silicone based serum that is applied to clean skin before moisturizing. The product itself goes on smoothly, feels silky to touch. I did experience some mild stinging when I used it the first couple of times, however my skin (which is very very VERY sensitive) didn't break out, so I pushed past that stage. I don't feel stinging now. I use the unscented version, which I also like, because my skin cannot tolerate fragranced products. The pump distributes the product cleanly and evenly, and enables you to get almost all of the product out (when the bottle is almost empty you have open it and shake out what's left). I can get a 3.4 oz. bottle at Costco for $27, which is a bargain if you ask me.
I did not realize how well this product worked until I STOPPED using it, and my skin texture slowly became uneven and patchy again. I finally relented and bought another bottle, and a few days later, *poof*, my skin was even and the dry patches were gone. It really does make a difference in skin texture and smoothness.
What it DOESN'T do is affect wrinkles or pore size, hence the reason I only gave it 4 lippies instead of 5.
I've only been using this for a week, but I already see improvements in skin texture and overall appearance. I use a moisturizer under it (Olay Regenerist). I also notice that my makeup stays fresher, longer. No irritation, no breakouts, just a nice smooth feeling to my skin. This might become a staple for me.
Love this serum. It feels very nice on and if your not that dry you don't even need a moisturizer over it. Makes foundation nice and smooth application afterwards and doesn't feel heavy or oily at all. Nice antioxidants in it as well. I don't know why they have a fragrance version of this???
I wanted to love this serum, and for about two weeks I did. I was at the post-Accutane point where I thought nothing would break me out. Then I got this for fine lines and chronic dryness on my neck and face, and it really made my skin soft and smooth. I loved the feeling of protection it gave me from the harsh winter air and central heating. Then, two weeks in, I started getting small pimples at my hairline, followed by cysts on my cheeks, jaw, and neck. I am stopping for now to see if it's the serum or the hormones, but even if it's hormones, there's no way I'm putting silicone on my face if it's covered in zits. This stuff is great for dryish, completely acne-free skin.
UPDATE: I've switched to NIA24 and love it. Getting even better results. My skin just seems to like niacinamide
ORIGINAL: I've was reading the scant research on niacinamide, and it seems to show lots of promise for improvement in fine lines, hyperpigmentation, and skin texture...all the things I'm currently fighting (dontcha just love gravity and being a sun worshipping teenager :P) I first started adding niacinamide from skinactives to Thayers Rose Witch Hazel. I saw negligable results, but enough that I wanted to try something stronger, so I added this to my morning routine since its supposed to have the highest percentage of niacinamide of the ds brands. I just finished the 1st bottle and I'm very happy with the results. My skin tone has really improved. Freckles, sunspots, and dark patches have really faded noticeably, especially on my neck where the sun damage is extensive and my skin is very mottled...or at least it used to be very mottled. Now its just sorta blotchy and seems to be improving all the time. The broken capillaries around my nose have almost completely disappeared and my skin just seems to be generally brighter overall. It took almost 3/4 of the bottle before I suddenly noticed a difference. I also love the 'cone like quality. It feels protective on my skin. I put this on after my serums have soaked in, then moisturizer after and it hasn't clogged my clog-prone pores. In fact I could swear they are visibly smaller since using this. I didn't have any side affects at all. No additional oiliness, dryness, or itchiness/irritation, and my mu actually seems to stay on longer and look fresher all day. I'm going to use up one more bottle, then graduate to NIA24 to see if that has even better results.
I have tried so many anti-aging products and this is by far the best especially for my super sensitive skin. I had allergic reactions to vitamin c serums and many other skin products. I read an article about the ingredients in this product and it was highly recommended by many dermatologists. It certainly has lived up to its promises for me. It leaves my skin silky smooth and has definitely softened some lines. Best of all it does not bother my skin. Definitely a GREAT PRODUCT!
This product has achieved HG status for me. As an oily skinned gal who is aging and starting to have fine lines that I want to treat before they turn into deep crevices, it's very, very difficult to find a product that meets my needs. Just about everything, regardless of price, was too heavy, greasy, oily, yuck for my oily acne prone skin.
When this product first came out, it was recommended to me as an excellent primer beneath mineral make-up. Those of you who wear MMU know that it needs something to adhere to or it slides right off your face, regardless of how much "buffing" one does. So I bought this as a reasonably priced alternative to the Bare Escentuals primer product. (I love Bare Escentuals, but they are definitely at the top of my price range)
It did what I was told, meaning it performed very, very well as a primer. It created a smooth, uniform look for my MMU, and filled in my pores beautifully. But it also proved to be the perfect moisturizer and anti aging product for me. It's not meant to be a moisturizer, but for me, who needs just a teensy weensy bit of moisture, it is absolutely perfect. It feels weightless on the skin, and has a lovely velvety texture. No grease. No glop. No oil slicks.
But best of all?? No acne. It does not cause me to break out, ever.
Now, about the anti-aging properties....
Because I am very pale complected, I am very susceptible to dark spots from blemishes, hyperpigmentation, freckling...you name it. These of course, age a woman more than anything. But this keeps my tone light and even. The fine lines I've been expecting for a couple of years have shown up, but they are much less marked than I expected. I'm told I look much younger than my 40 years and I choose to believe that's true!
This performs as well or better than the high end products I've used. I truly can't live without it.
I have a tendency to keep searching for the best products. Meanwhile, if I come across something great, I would still continue looking around. Having said that, many years ago, I tried the regular version of this and I recall that it was so good that I stopped wearing foundations. Why I used other products after this is beyond me... For a couple of months, my skin was having all kinds of problems. Some of it is because of hormones and nutrient but my skin care was not up to par either. Someone recommended this product on MU board and fortunately, I followed her advice... Make the long story short, this cleared up the little break out around below my lips. My old acne scars gradually but surely faded. My skin is texture is 500 times better than before. My skin is not as dehydrated as before either. Overall improvement is stunning. I use this under my foundation for now but I think I can easily forget about wearing foundations altogether. Great product and highly recommended-
UPDATE 12/4/09: So after I stopped using the serum for a while I realized that it was not the problem - it was my sunscreen. So I got off that and back on the serum and so far not bad. It makes my skin feel smoother immediately but I'm not sure it's doing anything about the wrinkles yet. I'm almost done with this bottle and I will probably give it one more go before I decide.
I really wanted to like this product based on the reviews I've read. Also, Paula raves about the ingredients and formulation. But it just does not work for me. The packaging is great, and the price is good for a serum, but it really dries me out. I've come to the realization that silicone products just dry out my skin.
I've been using this serum for about a year. The redness on my cheeks has been greatly reduced, and my skin is less dry. I use it at night and apply a moisturizer over it.