I recently found myself looking at a $10,000 face mask with disbelief. No miracle cream could ever make me drop that much cash. At the behest of a Truth In Aging community member who had succumbed to a sale’s person peddle, I had stumbled on the website of L’Core Paris where a diamond-dusted mask goes for $2,200 (a real bargain compared to the former). Surely there had to be some justification for these prices — or are these gilded products all fool’s gold?
Gold, I presume, is the justification for the 24K Royal Face & Neck Deep Tissue Masks that’ll run you more than a facelift itself. (But, hey, you do get 12 of them.) You might expect these masks to provide miracles, but if you dig in as I did, you’ll find a goldmine of worrying research. When using colloidal (suspended, very fine particles) gold, one researcher found that migration of the cells and the ability of the cells to contract collagen is actually suppressed. It was also noted that size matters — the larger the nanoparticles, the more toxic gold was likely to be. When the gold particles disrupted vital cell processes, wrinkle formation increased. The shorthand for this is that gold could make you look older.
I should mention that the gold mask has little else to write home about other than a couple of forms of vitamin B, vitamin C and hyaluronic acid. It is worth a cautionary note that, in addition to sticker shock, there’s the slight chance of toxic shock since the formula contains sodium benzoate, which doesn’t play nice with vitamin C at all.
Now, what about the Crystalline 60 Second Face Lift at $2,200? This uses a girl’s best friend, but is there any real value to formulating with bling? Randy Schueller, a cosmetic chemist and editor at The Beauty Brains, says that diamonds are inactive and any effects are superficial. There is a bonafide active here, acetyl hexapeptide-8 and otherwise known as Argireline. It is a neuropeptide that inhibits expression lines and you will find it in hundreds of formulations that cost less than a tenth of this.
These ridiculous price tags for such mediocre products may serve the purpose of making some of the other products in the range seem reasonable. Our TIA community member fled the store only a couple of hundred dollars lighter. One of the two products she was clutching was the Crystalline Wrinkle Filler, $999 but currently on offer for only $199, which makes one wonder. Promising to smooth wrinkles, eradicate fine lines, lift sagging bags and lighten dark circles, this little bargain has but one key active ingredient: the aforementioned neuropeptide Argireline.
That was a really good sales person — kudos…I guess?
Ingredients in 24K Royal Face & Neck Deep Tissue Masks
Deionized Water, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Niacinamide, Pantethine, Sodium Benzoate, Propylene Glycol, Algae Extract, Hyaluronic Acid, Beta-Glucan, Phenoxyethanol, Allantoin, Ethylhexylglycerin, Xanthan Gum, Ascorbic Acid, Carbomer, Disodium EDTA, Vitis Vinifera Fruit Extract, Rose Flower Oil, Tocopherol, Iodopropynyl Butyl Carbamate, Gold, Polysorbate 20.
Ingredients in Crystalline 60 Second Face Lift
Water, Diamond Extract, Sodium Silicate, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Butylene Glycol, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, Lycium Barbarum Fruit Extract, Coffea Arabica (Coffee) Seed Extract, Euterpe Oleracea Fruit Extract, Morinda Citrifolia Extract, Punica Granatum Fruit Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Garcinia Mangostana Fruit Extract, Kaolin, Mica, Xanthan Gum, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Fragrance.
Ingredients in Crystalline Filler
Purified Water (Aqua), Sodium Silicate, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8 (Argireline), CL 77489 (Iron Oxide), Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin.