Whenever new beauty product testers come through our editorial pipeline, Marta can feel like a kid in a candy store. With that said, it's not always easy testing new products when you have sensitive skin. Often times, Marta begins testing a product on her neck, and then moves up to a less delicate area if there are no adverse reactions.
And just like in all of our medicine cabinets, in Marta's you'll find her tried and true (ahem, E'shee KI), some new favorites she is openly obsessing over (Innarah), and some other products that are to be moved to the drawer of broken dreams. Get an inside look at what's in Marta's product-testing lineup this fall.
What Marta is Currently Using:
Royal Nectar Cream Cleanser ($29) is a moisturizing face wash that softens and renews the skin. Though a cleanser-phile, Marta revisits this cleanser for the key actives manuka honey and bee venom, leaving it on for a few moments to benefit from the ingredients.
La Vie Celeste Exfoliating Mother of Pearl Cleanser ($40) is an all-natural, non-foaming cleanser that uses mother-of-pearl along with pink and white clays to gently cleanse, exfoliate and soothe for a clearer complexion. Marta discovered this cleanser four years ago and it has found a permanent place as a solid start to the rest of Marta’s anti-aging regimen.
Amarte Eyeconic Eye Cream works as an anti-wrinkle product in her medicine cabinet. Packed with mother-of-pearl (a source of minerals and amino acids) and antioxidants, it is a juvenator that delivers a 3.8% concentration of retinol with nano-encapsulated epidermal growth factor while giving vitality and resilience to your eyes without irritation. Funnily enough, Marta hasn’t been using this formula to target crow’s feet. Suffciently potent, while being gentle enough for the delicate, thinner skin of her pucker, the Eyeconic Eye Cream doubles in duty as it effectively treats pesky lip lines.
E'shee Clinical Esthetic Elixir of Life KI Therapy Serum ($189 in the shop) is the brand's most potent formula and works to rejuvenate damaged or aging skin while reducing deep wrinkles and improving moisture retention. It combines growth factors (FGF 1 peptide) and Far Infrared Powder (FIR) to firm skin, increase volume, smooth texture, reduce redness caused by rosacea and repair broken capillaries. It has consistently found its way back into Marta’s cabinet, no matter what season.
Amarte Ultra Veil Sunscreen ($45) is perhaps the first chemical sunscreen Marta has reviewed and recommended. Using a unique blend of four physical and chemical sunscreen agents with broad spectrum SPF 50 to protect sun exposed skin, and an epidermal growth factor that stimulates skin repair and collagen production, this sunscreen doubles as an anti-ager and displays no signs of residue, chalkiness, greasiness. Plus, it plays well with makeup.
Sciote Super Moist Hyaluronic Serum ($75 in the shop) is a treatment designed to provide intense hydration while reducing fine lines and wrinkles. This non-comedogenic formula contains active ingredients such as MSM, which is the purest form of sulfur and 50% hyaluronic acid that work to retain moisture and plump the skin. The end result is smooth and radiant skin.
Marta has been replicating Ildi Pekar's "Boost" Treatment by applying the Sciote generously and taking a little time to massage it into the skin. She then layers a peptide serum – currently BRAD Multi-Peptide ($95). Once both products absorb, she follows with ultrasonic treatment using her Truth Vitality Lux Renew ($279 in the shop). This combination really is the next best thing to a salon treatment, with the results being hydrated, plump, radiant skin.
Osmotics Blue Copper 5 Prime for Eye ($98) tackles the perplexing and often stubborn changes to the skin that come with the hormonal change many 40-somethings and older are going through. Using copper peptides and acetyl tetrapeptide-2 — a peptide that is supposed to firm the skin and compensates for the loss of certain hormones, such as thymopoietin, which slows down cell renewal and curbs the skin’s natural immune functions — Prime for Eye visibly lifts the upper lid with its powerful formula. Marta has found that her under-eyes are smooth, the skin is firm, lids are holding up and her eyelashes are darker and thicker.
E'shee Clinical Esthetic Alpha and Omega Gene Therapy Eye Cream ($284 in the shop) remains the best eye cream Marta has found so far for firming. E'shees eye cream uses an advanced restoration formula with breakthrough peptides, Far Infrared Ceramic Powder and the brand's signature epidermal growth factor, FGF1. This powerful eye cream improves skin's firmness and texture, reduces fine lines and deep wrinkles, rebuilds the extra cellular matrix, reduces dark circles and minimizes redness caused by rosacea and broken capillaries. This potent cream can also be used to repair lip lines around the mouth.
MitoQ Moisturizing Anti-Aging Serum ($119 in the shop) supports healthy cell function in order to reduce fine lines and wrinkles, firm skin and fade age spots with a single powerful active: a unique, turbo-charged form of ubiquinone, the antioxidant in CoQ10. One of Marta's predictions for 2014 was that anti-aging potion makers would tout ingredients that target mitochondria. The active antioxidant ubiquinone was developed to do just that. It is accumulated selectively and extensively by mitochondria, in contrast to other antioxidants, which distribute evenly throughout the cell. This accumulation — or concentration — is where MitoQ bases its claims of being 1,000 times stronger than other antioxidants.
Royal Nectar Face Mask ($68) is a wonderfully hydrating, lifting and rejuvenating treatment with anti-inflammatory bee venom as the key active, which gently firms skin and helps reduce lines. This is perhaps one of the longest lasting products in Marta's regimen, as she puts it simply, "It just works."
Innarah Treatment Solution Daily Solution ($150) is a hydrating and exfoliating serum that stimulates cell renewal and helps improve the performance of other skin care products. Although the consistency is akin to a toner, Innarah Treatment Solution Daily Solution is a hydrating and brightening serum. Plant stem cells from alpine rose extract helps to combat signs of aging while organic apple cider vinegar eliminates excess oil and unclogs pores.
Innarah Line Smoothing Treatment Serum Oxygenated Moisture Serum ($175) is a concentrated repairing serum with a powerful complex of plant stem cells, cell growth factors and peptides to firm skin while smoothing lines and wrinkles. This firming serum also helps prevent free radical damage caused by environmental stress and instantly brighten skin, and it has given Marta's skin a more velvety texture, while helping to eradicate some fine lines.
Nutra-Lift Brite & Lite ($34) is a skin-brightening serum that tackles hyperpigmentation and uneven skin tone by exfoliating with glycolic and salylic acid, while brightening with kojic acid. It is also full of botanical extracts such as phyllanthus emblica (Indian gooseberry), an antioxidant that suppresses pigmentation. Marta's conclusion is that for recent or smallish dark spots, Brite & Lite works.
What Marta is Currently Testing:
Osmotics Sleep Tight Mask (Might be a new favorite!)
Skinfinite Advanced C20+ Serum
Sciote's Body Lotion
What’s in the “Toss Pile”
Olie Biologique Huile Claire 006 Calming Oil
Skin Nutrition Cell CPR Eye Serum
Briogeo Be Kind, Be Gentle Cleansing Shampoo