Sunday, February 26, 2012

Ole Henriksen African Red Tea Age Defying Duo

African Red Tea Age Defying Duo is an antiaging kit designed to renew and revitalize the complexion.  I purchased this from Sephora for $14 a few months back and while the set itself is no longer available, the two products featured in it can be purchased separately.  I love generously sized trial sets like this that allow you to extensively sample a product, as it usually takes me several weeks of use to determine if I'm going to like it. 

Highlighted ingredients of each product from Sephora's site, with full ingredient list in the below photo:
African Red Tea See The Difference Serum
-African red tea: A powerful antioxidant that strengthens the skin's immune system, slows the aging process, and soothes the skin.
-Sea kelp: A skin-firming and detoxifying extract that's naturally rich in vitamins, minerals, and amino acids.
-Gingko biloba: Contains phytochemicals that help improve circulation and has potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
-Grapefruit, orange, and tangerine extracts: These extracts are astringent, antiseptic, aromatic, purifying, and brightening. 

 Express The Truth Creme
-African red tea: A powerful antioxidant that slows the aging process.
-Ester C 10% vitamin C complex: An antioxidant that stimulates collagen production.
-Polylysine: A peptide that improves elasticity and muscle tone.
-Hyaluronic acid: A humectant that binds moisture to skin.
-Zinc, copper and manganese gluconate: Antioxidants with calming, soothing, and collagen-production properties. 

The serum, as would be expected, has a lighter texture than the creme.  I used the serum during the day and the creme at night, as my oily skin really does not need a heavy moisturizer during the day.  The creme had a pleasant, slightly nutty smell (it does contain macadamia oil, so perhaps that's why) and the serum a light citrus fragrance.  Both are supposed to be good for all skin types, but my initial impression of the Express the Truth Creme was that it was too rich for my skin.  I've since decided that it works well for me during colder months when my skin does dry out a bit from indoor heating and I've been using it every night.  Not much of the creme is needed, as it is very emollient.  You can see how much is left, even though I've been using it for about a month now.  The serum, on the other hand, is about 2/3 gone, as I use two pumps of it each time. 

Ingredients (click to enlarge)
Of the two, my favorite was the Express the Truth Creme.  I experienced no irritation or break outs from either, the creme is definitely hydrating and makes my skin feel smooth, and the serum was nice and light under my makeup.  I don't have many wrinkles and would like to keep it that way for as long as possible, so I appreciate the presence of a peptide and antioxidants.  However, I do question packaging in clear glass, as antioxidants like vitamin C break down and oxidize when exposed to air and light, so not sure how stable and/or effective these would be long term.  On the plus side, the creme does contain a 10% concentration of vitamin C complex, which is the minimum recommended for effectiveness.  Another plus is that expiration dates are included on the packaging, as these types of ingredients can and do go bad.  Since vitamin C that has gone bad (oxidized, indicated by a yellow or brown color) can potentially increase free radical development, expiration dates are important!

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