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Post in Beauty Confidential

Let's talk Serums

I need the help of my fellow enablers with picking out the "perfect" serum Smiley Tongue
In a few weeks I'll be starting retinol a few times a week again. I have the PTR retinol fusion PM & some of the DDG retinol serum left. So I'm looking for something to use on those off nights.
I'm 30 yrs young, no real signs of wrinkles yet, get occasional hormonal breakouts, a few blackheads, acne scars, some forehead acne, milia, occasional redness and just got my first dark spot under my eye a few weeks ago (EEK!) My ideal serum would even skin tone, exfoliate, brighten, possibly help with the breakouts/scarring (cell turnover....), not dry out too much (due to retinol on other nights), can be hydrating, but doesn't have to be.

 

Products I have tired:
- OH Invigorating night gel- nice, but want something else
- Perricone Blue Plasma- still using it, don't see any results & it's been over 3 months Smiley Sad
- OH Truth Serum- it's my morning serum, won't ever replace it!
- DDG A/B pads- I tend to use these as a treatment 1-2x a week since the pads are so expensive
- Origins Mega Bright- too mild, no real results unless used with another product
- Dior One- from the pt perk, I tossed it. Not a fan that it's mostly waxes, fillers, alcohol, slip agents... I want a serum that delivers, not masks impurities.

 

Serums I'm looking at, but am open to suggestion:
- REN Resurfacing AHA concentrate - not sure how to incorporate this with retinol since it's 14 days on, 14 days off. http://www.sephora.com/resurfacing-aha-concentrate-P291203?skuId=1348911
- FAB Facial Radiance Serum- I see a lot of people on BT raving about it. I just hope it's not as weak as the Blue Plasma. Can anyone compare the two? http://www.sephora.com/facial-radiance-serum-P379498?skuId=1528124
- PTR Glycolic Acid 10 percent Hydrating Gel- Something I've had on my loves list for a long time but don't know much about it http://www.sephora.com/glycolic-acid-10-hydrating-gel-P3572?skuId=142026

 

P.S. no oils please! It's OK if the product has some oils in them (except for mineral oils), but I can't do oil based.

Re: Let's talk Serums

@dannyc -- I have the Lotion version of the PTR which I LOVE for increasing skin cell turnover.  I first discovered it in January this year and noticed that post-acne marks went away a LOT faster when using it.  It also helps control the acne itself.  It is however pretty strong so if your skin tends to be more sensitive you should either phase it in over time, or maybe just use as a spot treatment.  When my skin feels a little tender, I just use it on post-acne marks a couple times a day rather than all over.

 

The REN you have listed actually has Alcohol listed as the third ingredient.  I remember you were looking for toners without alcohol so that might be a factor here.  Also scanning the ingredients list, the AHAs do not look very potent, but I do think it would be stronger than the FAB serum, but less than the PTR.

 

Spoiler
REN ingredients: Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Flower Water, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Leaf Extract, Alcohol Denat., Lactic Acid, Glycerin, Sodium Lactate, Citrus Medica Limonum (Lemon) Fruit Extract, Phenoxyethanol, Passiflora Quadrangularis Fruit Extract, Ananas Sativus (Pineapple) Fruit Extract, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Fruit Extract, Rhizobian Gum, Sodium Hyaluronate, Xanthan Gum, Ethylhexylglycerin, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Peel Oil, Parfum (Fragrance), Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Bisulfite, Limonene, Linalool.

 

Re: Let's talk Serums

Which PTR lotion? The Retinol Fusion AM? I have an expired one (need to toss that), re-purchased a few times... but I'm looking for night time stuff now. 

Hmmm... Alcohol is a tricky ingredient. I don't want it in my toner & would prefer if it wasn't in my serums or moisturizers, but will settle if it's low on the list. 3rd ingredient grrrrrr... shows how much I did my research before posting :/ 

Re: Let's talk Serums

Sadly alcohol denat/denatured alcohol is listed as an "unhealthy alcohol", but if a formula is balanced well enough with soothing ingredients it may not dry out skin as much as one thinks. Often time the "unhealthy" alcohols are used to help with dry time, so products aren't lingering on the surface or leave a film.

 

 

Re: Let's talk Serums

Nope, I meant the lotion version of the PTR 10% Glycolic Gel that you listed:

 

swfupload_9063411318651635626.jpghttp://www.sephora.com/glycolic-acid-10-moisturizer-P3571?skuId=37861

 

 

Re: Let's talk Serums

@Drrragon,

When you use this do you use an additional moisturizer with it?

Does it play well with foundation?

Re: Let's talk Serums

@DoctorsMrs -- oops sorry didn't see this til now!  It's pretty moisturizing on its own and unless your skin is dry to begin with, most likely wouldn't need an additional moisturizer.  For me it doesn't ball up under my foundations.  However for this concentration of glycolic acid, it's probably better to use it at night since it can increase sun sensitivity.  If I do use glycolic in the morning, I make sure to slather on the sunscreen.

Re: Let's talk Serums

@Drrragon-- OOPS didn't see this til NOW. I was just about to PM you about it.

 

Thanks for answering. I put this on my loves list back when I saw you originally discussing it. Ordered it last week and just got it today. I was about to PM you to ask how you incorporate it in your routine. Thanks for this answer. Glad I stumbled on it. Smiley Happy

Re: Let's talk Serums

oh I hope it works for you!  I like the PTR because it has antioxidants in addition to the glycolic acid and also absorbs well into my skin.  Let me know how it goes and if you have any questions Smiley Happy  

Re: Let's talk Serums

I really like the DDF Amplifying Elixir. It's light, and feels refreshing to me, and helps a lot with the hormonal acne I used to get on my forehead.

Re: Let's talk Serums

@lylysa EXACTLY! which is why I'm OK with it being listed toward the bottom of the ingredient list, but not in the top 3, or 5... But for me alcohol in toner is a no-no. 

 

@drrragon I didn't even see that! Shoot! I have a bunch of moisturizers to get through (the Korres rose & c facial, Korres gel, OH sheer transformation...) But maybe I can use it with the blue plasma to amp it up a bit. Ahhhhh! 

Re: Let's talk Serums

LOL, well one reason you might opt for the moisturizer over the gel is that if you're new to AHAs (especially in the 10% range) the extra moisture will help counteract any drying effects of the glycolic acid.  I haven't tried the gel format myself (except trying it out in-store) but it's a nice option also that I think would get you similar results, but be lighter on your skin.

Re: Let's talk Serums

Hyaluronic acid/sodium hyaluronate in gel based moisturizers help boost their hydrating levels up immensely but allow them to keep their light texture!

 

The Korres Pomegranate Gel/Cream moisturizer and Dr. Jart's Water Fuse Gel are two that pack a punch without weighing skin down!

Re: Let's talk Serums

Yes I find the Korres Pomegranate Gel more hydrating than the Wild Rose & Vita C sleeping facial if that makes sense? Or maybe it just seems like a "different" kind of hydration? 

Re: Let's talk Serums

Mmhmm! I agree, for toners, there are SO many formulas available that it's completely plausible to find one that is free of bad alcohols. As far as it being in the REN serum, who knows, maybe with how it's formulated it needs that alcohol to boost it's dry down time as no one wants a gooey serum. Maybe see if you can get a sample if it's in stores to test the consistency.

Re: Let's talk Serums

I personally love the REN AHA concentrate.  I wouldn't really call it a serum though, so I'm not sure it's what you are looking for.  I use it 7 days on/14 days off, and it definitely helps exfoliate and smooth my complexion.  I probably would not use it at all if I were also using a retinol product, because that might be too much exfoliation.  At least, it would be for me. (I'm 31, somewhat oily, acne-prone skin with some leftover acne scars.)

 

I don't have a lot of experience with serums, but have you considered Philosophy's When Hope Is Not Enough?  I use that every morning and have been happy with it.  I used it for awhile without noticing anything different, and then one morning about 5 weeks later, I looked in the mirror and just looked...better.  It was such a gradual effect that I doubted it was working for the longest time.  I guess that's why you have to stick with it!  Good luck in your search!  If you find something you love, please let us know.

Re: Let's talk Serums

@dannyc- Are you wanting something to give you hydration as well or something more to get your dead cells off and give a lot of turnover?

Re: Let's talk Serums

ugh both?!?! I know my skin will start to get dry soon as the seasons change & I reintroduce retinol. I did get the new PTR no oil, oil serum. I'm hoping it works like the skincuticals B5 gel & I can layer it over my treatment & under my moisturizer. 

IDK, I just feel like my skin has been dull lately & more milia are popping up. I realize the Blue Plasma is just not doing enough for my skin & the Kores Rose & Vita C sleeping facial could be the cause of the milia. 

Re: Let's talk Serums

The Skinceuticals is what I was gonna bring up. Let me get some together and put them out for you I loooove the serums from Skinceuticals. Do you want some of those for suggestions?

Re: Let's talk Serums

I was just looking at their "C + AHA" serum today!  I haven't seen anything else that has 10% AHA and also 10% vitamin C, it's intriguing and would save me an extra step!

Re: Let's talk Serums

You know I do Smiley Wink & you probably have better knowledge of the brand than I do 

Re: Let's talk Serums

Skin Ceuticals Retexturizing activator. 41Vo+Ro8ILL._SY450_[1].jpgThis is going to give you all your wanting to accomplish and will not irritate your face. There's 6 in this pack for I think 35.00 so it's a good deal considering you only have to use a small amount and if you decide that you want some B5 hydrating gel I think this place has like 6 packs also for like 22.00. These are sample sizes which will last forever considering you are getting 6 in the pack. I've got serums in these sizes that I have for 7 months and I'm not out yet.51MSjHzqSPL._SX450_[1].jpgThe next is the Skin Ceuticals 0.5 Retinol Night Cream- Everything in these little tubes no other serum needed. These are like 25.00. All this stuff may not seem like a bargin but considering how long they last it's the best deal your gonna get with out going full size. Smiley Wink

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