If the ads for popular beauty products leave you skeptical, relax. Our 4you Beauty Board’s veteran testers are ready to try the latest and greatest when it comes to all things beauty. We’ll share what worked and what bombed with the hope of making your life a little easier.
Jennifer Bradley Time Freeze with Matrixyl 3000
Available at www.jenniferbradley.com and by calling (954) 647-4142; $98 for 1 ounce
“Time Freeze with Matrixyl 3000 is an extraordinary medical grade blend of peptides to reduce wrinkle depth, combined with a powerful collagen booster in a hyaluronic acid rich serum.”
Cloe says: I don’t have a lot of wrinkles, and I want to keep it that way for as long as possible. Beauty guru Jennifer Bradley packed this product with powerful peptides, including hyaluronic acid, and the light, silky serum immediately tightens your skin, lessening the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. And it lasts all day. It isn’t an itchy, uncomfortable tightening as with other time-freeze serums I’ve tried. It also works well as a makeup primer on my oily skin, allowing my foundation to glide on and look smoother. It’s recommended you use the product morning and evening to improve the look of your skin. I used it only during the day, and I still saw visible results.
Cloe Cabrera, 46, writes about entertainment and style for the Tribune, TBO.com and Centro Tampa
Lea Black Advanced Anti-Aging Serum
Available at leablackbeauty.com; $49.95 (regular price $65) for 1 ounce
“Increases skin’s overall elasticity to improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.”
Michelle says: Normally, I would not want to give a single penny to someone who does reality TV — in this case, that would be Lea Black of “The Real Housewives of Miami,” who is married to celebrity lawyer Roy Black. But it’s my duty as a Beauty Board reviewer to be open-minded, so I gave this anti-aging serum a fair trial. And yes, Lea, you sold me. I combined it with the intensive moisture renewal cream, and the two-step process did wonders for my skin — softening and plumping it up and giving it a nice sheen. Turns out Black has more than 20 years of experience in cosmetic formulation and development, so she’s not just lending her famous name to a product line. A serum is something all 50-plus women should add to their daily regime, especially those of us who can’t afford a surgical do-over. Your skin will drink this up and be better for it.
Michelle Bearden, 58, covers faith and values for The Tampa Tribune, TBO.com and WFLA-TV.
Murad Advanced Active Radiance Serum
Available at Sephora and murad.com; $89 for 1 ounce
“A fast-acting treatment serum featuring Resilient-C Complex to rapidly boost radiance and reverse visible signs of environmental damage.”
Clarisa says: I usually don’t check the price of a product until after I test it, and — holy sticker shock — I was surprised when I did. The Murad Advanced Active Radiance Serum is a pricey $89 for 1 ounce. But I experienced few of the promised results. A dark spot on my cheek didn’t fade, and I often had some redness/sensitivity after applying the serum. It wasn’t all negative though. I did see pores shrink on my nose (a trouble spot). I also liked the recommendation to apply it on your neck and chest. Maybe it’s just that I don’t give those areas enough attention, but the serum was a welcome relief there. The serum was lightweight and initially a little sticky, so I applied it before bed versus pre-makeup in the morning. Murad is well known for its skincare line so I’m still not ready to give up on its products. I’m (so far) a fan of an eye cream I’m testing.
Clarisa Gerlach, 42, is a TBO.com news editor.
PRAI 24K Gold Caviar Wrinkle Repair Serum
Available at praibeauty.com, hsn.com and amazon.com; $55 for 1 ounce (currently $44.95 on hsn.com)
“Go for the gold and win back 10 years for your skin! Our proprietary formula jump-starts your skin’s luminosity with powerful wrinkle-fighting peptides and luxurious 24K gold to leave it radiant and glowing. It appears lit from within.”
Kim says: I’ve been using a moisturizer daily since I was in my teens, but I haven’t yet added a serum to my regular routine. I wish I could say this one made a huge difference. This PRAI product has a nice scent, it goes on smoothly and it feels great on my skin. BUT it didn’t seem to tone, tighten or erase deep wrinkles any more than the (very good and very expensive) moisturizer I use twice a day. Since its primary purpose is to repair, I’m not all that impressed. Also, the “radiant glow” I’m supposed to get from this product comes from a glittery shimmer the serum leaves on the skin. Though I think many women like this look, I don’t care for it. I’m still searching for my miracle cream.
Kim Franke-Folstad, 55, is the editor of 4you.