Olay Regenerist Luminous Collection — NOT A Bright Star
At this very moment, Olay is running a promotion on its site promoting its new Olay Regenerist Luminous Collection by encouraging brides to “get that wedding day glow” by using the three products in the collection two weeks prior to saying their “I do’s.” From my experience, however, this collection (or, at the very least, the cleanser) can wreak havoc on the skin, so I’d venture to say that the worst time to test it out would be right before a major event — especially one most girls have dreamed of since infancy.
The Olay Regenerist Luminous Collection professes to restore a natural luminosity to the complexion, giving it a pearlescent glow. To that end, each of the three products was formulated with Olay’s Skin Energizing Technology which, according to the brand, was inspired by the manner in which natural freshwater pearls interact with light. Using the interaction between pearls and oncoming light to guide them, P&G scientists hoped to improve the skin’s texture, making it more translucent and smooth, so that a collagen mirror could be creates that would, in turn, better reflect light. What this means in terms of ingredients, however, isn’t quite clear. In fact, most of the brightening ingredients that we know to tackle hyperpigmentation effectively are noticeably absent from these products’ formulations. There’s no vitamin C derivatives, no apple extract, peony extract, lotus extract, raspberry extract, lemon extract, or licorice extract. There’s also no wonder ingredient like melanozyme, the enzyme at the core of the top-notch Elure Advanced Lightening Skincare System, which works to break up melanin clusters, thereby diminishing the appearance of dark spots.
So how exactly does this Skin Energizing Technology work? Well, that remains unclear. The Olay Regenerist Luminous Brightening Cream Cleanser ($22.99 at mass food and drug retailers) promises to brighten skin by gently exfoliating it via the micro-beads in the formula, thereby sloughing off any dead and dull skin, while also keeping skin hydrated and smooth.Granted, the same could be said of any exfoliating cleanser, but consumers are meant to believe these micro-beads are somehow more efficient.
I’ve typically had great experiences with Olay’s skincare products, but my complexion did not react well to this cleanser. For one, every time I washed my face, I still felt this creamy, balmy, yucky residue atop my face. Sometimes I’d wind up rinsing the cleanser off two and three times just to get rid of the unpleasant feeling. Sadly, nothing worked. Much to my chagrin, within two weeks of using this product, I had my first massive breakout in almost four months — and I blame it all on this pore-clogging muck!
Once I read the label, everything became clear. After all, there are no natural botanicals in this formula and, instead, you’ll find many a problematic and potentially irritating ingredient — among these mineral oil and isopropyl palmitate, a thickening agent known to be comedogenic since it can deprive the skin of nutrients such as oxygen, clogging pores, and triggering acne flare-ups. Well, that explains it!
Moving on to the Olay Regenerist Luminous Tone Perfecting Cream ($24.99 at mass food and drug retailers), this velvety moisturizer aims to stimulate collagen production and diminish the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles via penta-peptide pal-KTTS, a synthetic agent engineered by combining peptides and palmitic acid, which are both related to collagen formation. While I didn’t have any adverse reactions to this cream, I found that it differed only slightly from the Olay Regenerist Face Cream in terms of its texture and even the results delivered. Now, this is far from an insult — the Olay Regenerist Face Cream is probably one of the best anti-aging moisturizers available at drugstores — but I don’t see this cream being effective in terms of battling hyperpigmentation. In fact, a glimpse at the ingredient list shows no evidence of any brightening agents. You’ll find soothing and emollient ingredients like aloe leaf juice, glycerin, and camellia leaf extract, but nothing that can effectively break up melanin clusters.
Now, this product claims to deliver younger-looking skin in 2 weeks and more radiant skin in 8 weeks — an exaggeration of epic proportions. Sure, you might notice that skin feels more subtle or that the appearance of some fine lines is diminished, but the brightening effects are minimal even after 8 weeks of use.
Last, the collection includes the Olay Regenerist Luminous Dark Circle Correcting Hydraswirl ($24.99 at mass food and drug retailers), a gel-and-cream formula that aims to reduce the appearance of dark under-eye circles after 8 weeks of consistent use. Again here, the eye cream is soothing and moisturizing enough since it contains glycerin, collagen, pro-vitamin B5, vitamin E, and pentapeptide-4. but there are no ingredients to tackle those pesky, shadowy areas underneath your peepers. After using this product for several months, I saw no discernible difference in the appearance of my under-eye circles.
This collection, then, will leave those looking to battle hyperpigmentation thoroughly displeased — especially since neither the face cream nor the eye cream even contain light-diffusing pearl particles that can, at the very least, create an optical blurring effect.
My advice: leave these products on the shelf and focus on other options like the Elure Advanced Lightening Skincare System, the Korres Wild Rose collection, or the Clarins Bright Plus Intensive Brightening Smoothing Serum. And, without a doubt, do not try these right before your wedding, okay?