A month or so ago, Idi (my esthetician) said “Marta, you are going to have to start taking care of your hands.” They hadn’t come through the summer very well and were looking parched and a large, a-hem freckle, was getting larger and darker. More were lurking. I grabbed Celazome Gly Repair ($54) and it has become my de facto hand cream.  Now more than half way through the pot, I look down at my hands and no longer want to sit on them. In fact, I am rather liking them again.

However, I am recommending Celazome Gly Repair with a couple of significant reservations. The first is the smell. Now, let it be known that despite never having had a cocaine habit (honest!), I have the sense of smell of someone who had an expensive one. So, normally, a product’s fragrance rarely gets to me. This one does. It makes my eyes water. This potion’s pong is why it became my hand cream; there was no way I could test it on my face – or even my neck.  I asked Sarah for a second opinion and she said that it smelled like a Crayola crayon – after meeting an arsonist.

And it is mysteriously noticeable only to women. Men can’t smell it (so Dr Watson, the lab rat behind this formulation is, in my opinion, a guy). My husband said (in the tone of voice he uses when he is totally unconvinced but thinks he should sound supportive) that it might smell vaguely medicinal. Sunil (whose byline you will see on Truth In Slimming) said, “what smell?”.  (I need to teach him about managing up).

Anyway, enough. Celazome Gly Repair really does deserve some kudos for giving me my hands back. They are very smooth, all plumped up and much more even in tone. None of this happened in the first three weeks, mind. But once it kicked in, it kicked ass. The main active is glycolic acid at a 10% concentration, It is joined by other exfoliating alpha hydroxy acids – lactic, citric and malic. It should be noted that this cream never stings.

I may find that now the initial work has been done that I can cut back using Gly Repair to, say three or four times a week.  Although it has green tea, aloe and yeast, I’ll be needing some additional actives to boost collagen and so I am thinking that I’ll supplement it with a peptide rich moisturizer. Also, I need to be careful to use a sunscreen (I’m heading to Central America this Thanksgiving).

Despite the good results, I cannot wholeheartedly recommend Celazome Gly Repair. The EWG gives it a hazard rating of 7 out of 10. This is due to ingredients such as sodium hydroxide. I think this is behind the smell. It is used in cosmetics as a pH balancer, but it is a lye and has an ammonia smell. It can actually be harmful to respiratory tract and is a known skin irritant (although I haven’t experienced skin irritation).  I could also do without triethanolamine, another irritant that animal studies show causes sense organ effects at very low doses, especially when used around the mouth, eyes and lips.


De-ionized water, glycolic acid (partially neutralized with sodium hydroxide), caprylic/capric triglycerides, aloe barbadensis, yeast extract, cetearyl alcohol, polysorbate 60, peg-150 stearate, steareth-20, glycerin, lactic acid, citric acid, malic acid, green tea, triethanolamine, stearic acid, cetyl alcohol, jojoba oil, salicylic acid, polyacrylamide, c13-14 isoparaffin, laureth-7, alcohol, lecithin, diazolidinyl urea, iodopropynyl butylcarbamate, methylparaben.