Were you ever in a relationship that you really really wanted to work, but despite your best efforts the universe just seemed to be conspiring against you two?
That’s me and the Armani Regenessence [3.R] Youth Regenerator serum.
I think Jenn first brought home a sample of this from a Neiman Marcus Austin event in November. It was only enough for 2 or 3 applications, but she swore that after the first night her skin looked visibly brighter and more hydrated. I was skeptical but I certainly trust Jenn to know her skin, and who isn’t looking for that Holy Grail of skin care products?
She took me to the Neiman Marcus Armani counter, where the lovely Martina supplied me with my own sample. I used it that night, and I was ready to be underwhelmed.
I think it’s made with magical fairy dust or powered unicorn horn: my skin looked brighter and smoother the next morning. That’s not possible, right?? Of course my sample ran out far too quickly, and then I was like a junkie jonesing for a fix. The problem? It’s $140.
I waited patiently until my birthday in early December, and when my parents asked what I wanted, I had my answer at the ready! I was soooo excited to bring that shiny silver bottle home! I applied it that night and couldn’t wait to look in the mirror the next morning, like it was an early Christmas for my skin.
And I had a couple of tiny broken capillaries under my left eye. Huh?? Maybe I sneezed really hard in my sleep. I tried it again that next night.
And I woke up with a couple of tiny broken capillaries under my right eye. So NOT the effect I was aiming for. I put it in the medicine cabinet until the Christmas holiday, then I tried it again.
This time the results were what I’d been hoping for: no broken capillaries, and my skin looked luminous and hydrated. That lasted for 3 days, and then the breakouts started.
WTH?? Sure, I’d single-handedly eaten an entire tin of peppermint bark in that same timeframe. But I’d fallen hard off the paleo wagon before without looking like a pizza-faced teenager, so I wasn’t inclined to attribute it to my dietary failures alone. I researched every. single. ingredient. in the long, long list. The only even questionable one was waaaay at the bottom, behind a lot of really great ingredients. Maybe it was the insanely strong fragrance irritating my skin?
So it is with mixed emotion that I deliver this review.
The Claim: “Triple regenerative molecules in clinical doses for triple rejuvenating effects on skin. The results obtained on this star product are unprecedented. Rarely women have been so convinced of its efficiency on skin rejuvenation: INSTANTLY REDUCED WRINKLES 71%**. In 6 days you will achieve the dream of an Armani skin: a skin with the [3.R]’s aspect that together make a perfect Armani skin.
In 1 month you gain up to 6 years of youth***
In vivo test on 10 volunteers
** % of women – self assessment on 50 women
*** on the appearance of wrinkles on crow’s feet – 36 women from after 3 months”
Bold claims! Very specific percentages! (I’m no scientist, but I’m not sure that 10 volunteers really counts as a representative sampling? But maybe I need to look up “in vivo”….) I do know this: any moisturizer will immediately improve the look of wrinkles if your skin is dry. The claims are all about the perceived effect, not an actual effect. But hey, perception is reality, right?
The Good: This serum contains a stellar list of antioxidants, ingredients that attract and hold water to the skin (a.k.a. humectants), and anti-irritants to help improve the quality and texture of your skin. There’s only one ingredient that isn’t favorable but as mentioned above, it’s way down on the list, unlikely to cause problems. The packaging is also a winner: it’s opaque and dispensed using a dropper. This means limited exposure to the elements (air and light), which will help maintain the stability and efficacy of the ingredients longer. And it really did make my skin look more luminous and hydrated.
I wouldn’t recommend it for those with oily skin, but it isn’t thick or greasy, and it absorbs quickly so most skin types could probably use it without difficulty.
The Questionable: The fragrance is outrageously strong. It’s not a bad smell, but wow! Not sure why that seemed necessary: it’s certainly a potential source of irritation to those with sensitive skin. And then there’s the price: $140. I think it would last about 4-6 weeks if a dropper-full was applied nightly (which would be about the size of a large pea). You do the math on that for a year.
The Verdict: I can’t quite bring myself to hold my inexplicable experiences against the product, but I can’t discount them either. If you have the disposable income, you’re looking for a serum that has a lot of quality antioxidants and humectants, and you don’t mind a strong fragrance right next to your nose, give it a shot. Go see Martina, she’ll take care of you!
Beautypendence Rating (out of 5):
P.S. After writing all this I think I want to give it another shot…. I don’t know how to quit you, Armani Regenessence Serum!!