Friday, May 3, 2013

Dr. Brandt Glow Overnight Resurfacing Serum with 2% Active Retinol Time Release Complex: Review

 Purchased by me
Dr. Brandt Glow Overnight Resurfacing Serum with 2% Active Retinol Time Release Complex is a potent nighttime retinol serum that was formulated to provide"both immediate and long term release to promote radiance from within. It stimulates new cell turnover to improve skin texture and tone. The appearance of lines, wrinkles, and enlarged pores is softened, revealing new, healthy skin with a youthful glow."

Unlike many high percentage retinol based products, this serum contains an ingredient called Oliveactive, an anti-inflammatory, that aids in the reduction of redness and irritation while simultaneously providing protection against oxidative stress.

This retinol will also have a wider appeal to the scores of people who prefer to avoid Parabens, Sulfates, and Phthlates in their skincare products as these ingredients will not be found in this product.

Dr. Brandt posits that their research rendered the following results:

Noticeable to extremely noticeable improvement after 4 weeks of treatment:
- 100% reported that their skin looked radiant and glowing
- 100% reported that their skin had improved its texture and tone
- 100% reported lessening of the appearance of lines and wrinkles
- 100% reported that their skin felt smoother

Dermatologist evaluation of subjects after 4 weeks of treatment:
- 76% volunteers showed much improvement in the look of their pores
- 24% volunteers showed very much improvement in the look of their pores
- 56% volunteers showed much improvement in facial wrinkles
- 44% volunteers showed very much improvement in facial wrinkles
Recommended use:
-After cleansing, apply a thin layer all over face.
-Do not rinse.
-If any discomfort occurs, limit usage to up to three times per week until skin adapts.
-Use daily UV protection and avoid excessive sun exposure.
-Due to the presence of Retinol, this product may change in color over time.
-For external use only.
-Keep out of reach of children.
-Avoid contact with eye area, lips, and nostrils.
-Do not use on irritated or damaged skin.
-If excessive irritation develops, discontinue use and consult your physician.
-Follow all instructions concerning the frequency and timing of use. This product should not be used in conjunction with other exfoliating products.
-2% Retinol Complex: Provides short- and long-term time-release retinol to improves texture and tone while softening the appearance of lines, wrinkles and enlarged pores. 
-Hydra-Balance: Regulates water flow through cell membranes, balancing skin's natural hydro content and preventing dehydration. 
-Oliveactive (Maslinic Acid): Counteracts inflammation to help reduce redness and irritation while protecting skin against oxidative stress. 

My experience after 6 weeks of use: I must first preface the description of my experience by stating that I have used nighttime retinol based products on a nightly basis for several years now. Therefore, my experience with Dr. Brandt's Glow Overnight Resurfacing Serum is tempered by the fact that my skin was already acclimated to the nightly use of retinol. With that in mind, I have to say that I experienced no peeling, redness, or irritation as one often experiences when one sets about using retinol for the first time. In all honestly, I have absolutely no idea whether or not my skin would have been negligibly, moderately, or overwhelmingly irritated by this product if this was my first experience with retinol. However, I can tell you that I would not likely have tried a 2% solution my first time out (a 2% over-the-counter retinol and a 2% prescription strength retinol obtained from a doctor are not the same- the difference in strength is orders of magnitude). As was expected, this serum has left my skin more even-toned, softened fine lines, it diminished the appearance of any enlarged pores, and has overall offered clarity and radiance to my skin. I do feel as though the Shea Butter, Honey, Jojoba Oil, and other moisturizing agents did go a long way in preventing my skin from drying out- which is one of the primary complaints people level against retinol products. I am pleased with the results, but quite honestly can't say that there is a marked difference in the quality and appearance of my skin over the last retinol that I used, but that's not to say that I don't like this one- because I do.

Caveat Emptor: Retinol is not for everyone, and this type of product should be used with great care. Retinoids do cause photosensitivity thereby making it imperative to wear a high SPF sunscreen. This also should not mistakenly be used during the day- it is a nighttime serum. It is redundant and quite often contraindicated to use such potent exfoliating agents with other exfoliants (Lactic Acid, AHAs, Enzyme peels etc.), and such over-use/abuse can lead to the thinning of the skin, increased sensitivities, hyperpigmentation, hypopigmentation, breakouts, and other more serious skin conditions. It is always a good idea to consult your physician to make sure that such a product is well suited to your skin type, and to make sure that it does not contain any ingredients that may be contraindicated with respect to any medications or other topicals that you are already using. I realize that I may sound like a bit of an alarmist, but it only took one trip to the dermatologist who had told me a few grisly tales of what can happen that prompted me to run ingredient lists by my doctor whenever in doubt. Additionally, make sure that the hyperpigmented spots that you seek to treat with retinol or exfoliants aren't actually precancerous, or worse yet cancerous- because treating those with exfoliating topicals is not only ill-advised, but actually dangerous. The best thing that I did was have my doctor evaluate my skin first. Furthermore, beautiful healthy skin takes daily care and diligent protection.

Ingredients: Water, Glycerin, Dicaprylyl Carbonate, Isoamyl Laurate, Cyclopentasiloxane, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Shea Butter Esters, Triheptanoin, Tocopherol, Phenoxyethanol, Behenyl Alcohol, Methylpropanediol, Glyceryl Stearate Citrate, Polysorbate 20, Sodium Acrylates Copolymer, Retinol, Glyceryl Stearate, Simmonsia Chenesis (Jojoba) Oil, Xanthan Gum, Betaine, Polyglyceryl-3 Stearate, Citrus Nobilis Oil, Chlorphenesin, Caprylyl Glycol, Caprylic /Capric Triglyceride, Lecithin, Glycine Soya Sterols, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Maslinic Acid, Phenylpropanol, Bht, Sodium Phytate, Dimethiconol, Hydrogenated Polyisobutene, Honey, Pectin, Phospholipids, Polyglyceryl-10 Stearate, Heliantus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Glycine Soya Oil.

Overall assessment: A very nice nighttime retinol serum. While it may seem a touch pricey, do note that many mid-range to luxury retinol serums run upwards of $50.00 or more for an ounce, and this is a 1.7 oz. bottle. However, if your budget does not include this type of splurge for a single skincare product then be assured that there are many less expensive retinol products on the market.

1.7 oz $85.00 purchased from Sephora. (Unaffiliated link included for your convenience).


  1. Do you prefer this over the FutureDerm retinol product?

    1. I wouldn't say that I prefer it- honestly my skin looks about the same to me from when I was using FutureDerm. What I find interesting is the fact that FutureDerm contains 0.50% retinol and Dr. Brandt contains 2% retinol, and yet If you took a picture of my skin after using each one for at least a month I would not be able to tell you which picture went with which retinol. Now I have to preface it by reiterating that I have been using retinol based products for a long time so my skin is quite acclimated with little need for added exfoliation. Therefore someone else may be able to see a marked difference in the performance between these do, but I have not. I would happily repurchase either of these, but it will be some time before I need to since I have another retinol product in the wings to test after I finish this one. <3


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