AmorePacific is a new brand to the Americas, having tremendous success in Asia (and amongst skin care connoisseurs who order products from Asia) for years. Now available at numerous major retailers, AmorePacific receives a lot of publicity as one of the only skin care lines featuring eight-to-twelve hour time release formulations.
The secret? The line contains minimized ingredients that are 1/100 the size of the particles in most other products. The result? Skin care ingredients with increased efficacy, as written in the journal Nature Biotechnology:
“Engineered nanoparticles are used in personal care products, ranging from cosmetics to sunscreens, where decreasing the size of active ingredients, typically pigments, yields better performance.“
Exciting news! Now, as for which products to buy from AmorePacific and which to skip, read on.
Best Product: AmorePacific Enzyme Peel
This is one of those products that works. The main ingredient in the AmorePacific Enzyme Peel ($100, amazon.com), lactose, has been found to increase skin tensile strength and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles (Skin Research and Technology, 2006), though the lactose used in this study was coupled with melbiose, another sugar. What really excites me in the AmorePacific Enzyme Peel is the papain, which contains proteolytic (i.e., protein-digesting) enzymes that leave skin smoother and softer (The Complete Book of Enzyme Therapy). As skin aesthetician and cosmetologist Zia Wesley-Howard says, “Enzymes gently yet thoroughly dissolve old skin cells without dissolving new ones or harming the skin.”
Indeed, AmorePacific Enzyme Peel leaves skin feeling fresh, clean, and gently exfoliated, as though a magical ingredient dissolved only the dead skin cells…oh wait, one did! Add in the fact that AmorePacific Enzyme Peel contains green tea extract, an anti-inflammatory antioxidant proven to reduce oxidative stress following UV exposure (Carcinogenesis, 2001) and potentially reduce the build-up of glycated end products with age (Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics, 2002), and you have one winning product. Shimmering, glimmering, absolutely glowing review!
Overall Rating: 100%
Not as Worth It (as Much): AmorePacific Treatment Cleansing Foam and AmorePacific Treatment Cleansing Oil
So here’s the thing. Say you’re a multi-millionaire and you asked me if you should you buy AmorePacific Treatment Cleansing Foam ($50, amazon.com) and Oil ($89.95, amazon.com), of course I would say, “Absolutely, definitely, yes.” Why not? It’s a gentle cleanser in line with the traditional Asian method of facial cleansing, without the harsh detergent-like ingredients that can irritate sensitive skin. AmorePacific Treatment Cleansing Foam and Oil feel great, rinse away smoothly, and contain emollient antioxidants olive oil and vitamin E.
The truth of the matter is, AmorePacific Treatment Cleansing Foam (and Cleansing Oil) are excellent products, but there are similar treatments available for less money. For instance, Shiseido Extra Gentle Cleansing Foam Cleaner ($30.95, amazon.com) costs about half as much, and provides many of the same gentle cleansing benefits. As many antioxidants? No. But the same soft, smooth skin? Yes.
Besides, unless you spend a full minute using your cleanser, you’re not actually getting the full effect from it anyway, according to renowned dermatologist Dr. David E. Bank in a January 2008 Health magazine article. It takes a full sixty seconds for the anti-aging ingredients to bind to your skin well enough to create an effect. I don’t know about you, but that’s one minute a day I’d rather spend on something else (my website, for instance)! So while I like the AmorePacific Treatment Cleansing Foam and Cleansing Oil, I’d rather save my money for moisturizers.
Overall Rating: 75%
Bottom Line: AmorePacific = Unique and Efficacious
I think it’s fitting AmorePacific contains Pacific in the title, because it epitomizes the difference between trends in eastern and western skin care right now. The #1 skin care line in South Korea, AmorePacific features the latest in skin care technology: nanoparticles penetrating deeply into the skin; time-release formulas; and highly concentrated polyphenols from green tea extracts. Yet many in the western world have concerns of potential harm from the release of nanoparticles into the bloodstream (International Center for Trade Assessment, 2006) and the environment (Nature Biotechnology, 2003), as well as concerns about the safety of parabens in general.
I personally love AmorePacific products; however, I have to be honest. I have a lot of readers who are more cautious about their skin care, seeking natural and organic ingredients and so forth. These readers may want to look elsewhere.
If you are currently in the market for LaMer, LaPrairie, SK-II, and Erno Laszlo (all of which have some great products, by the way, but that’s another post), I think you should give AmorePacific a try. As always, speak to your dermatologist for specific recommendations!
Ingredients in AmorePacific Enzyme Peel: Lactose, Mannitol, Sodium Lauroyl Glutamate, Sodium Cocoyl Glycinate Dextrin, Water, Zeolite, Silica, Betaine, Papain, Allantoin, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract Starch, PEG-32, Butylparaben, Methylparaben, Polymethyl Methacrylate, Yellow 5, Green 3, Fragrance.
Ingredients in AmorePacific Treatment Cleansing Foam: Water, Glycerin, Potassium Stearate, Potassium Myristate, PEG-8, Sodium Myristoyl Glutamate, Potassium Laurate, PEG/PPG-25/30 Copolymer, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-32, Sorbitol, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, PEG-200 Hydrogenated Glyceryl Palmate, Stearic Acid, Myristic Acid, Lactose, Mangifera Indica (Mango) Seed Oil, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Phyllostachis Bambusoides Juice, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Hydrolyzed Ginseng Saponins,Tocopheryl Acetate, Ultramarines, Disodium EDTA, Lauric Acid, Butylene Glycol, Bht, Cellulose, Ethyl Hexanediol, Alcohol, Olive Oil PEG-8 Esters, Trehalose, Triclosan, Propylene Glycol, PEG-100 Stearate, PEG-14m, PEG-5 Rapeseed Sterol, Hydrogenated Lecithin, PEG-7 Glyceryl Cocoate, Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose, Sodium Benzoate, Methylparaben, Butylparaben, Ethylparaben, Isobutylparaben, Phenoxyethanol, Propylparaben, Fragrance.
Ingredients in AmorePacific Cleansing Oil: Hydrogenated C6-14 Olefin Polymers, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, PEG-20 Glyceryl Triisostearate, PEG-8 Isostearate, Isopropyl Palmitate, Polysorbate 80, Hydrogenated Olive Oil Unsaponifiables, Limnanthes Alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Phyllostachis Bambusoides Juice, Tocopherol, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Hydrogenated Isocetyl Olivate, Glyceryl Linoleate, Glyceryl Linolenate, Glyceryl Arachidonate, Butylene Glycol, Fragrance.
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