by Ann P.
The Elena Rubin Serenity Calming Cream ($49) interested me with its long list of calming botanicals. I’m approaching fifty and have had thread veins and occasional rosacea breakouts for most of my adult life. I’ve been doing well with Medik8 Red Alert, but still have more of a blush to my nose and cheeks than I would like. The Elena Rubin product does not contain any of the same actives that are in Medik8 Red Alert, so it seemed like a good addition to my usual skin care routine.
My first impression was that the cream was silky and lightweight, pale blue in color and with a pleasant floral fragrance that faded quickly.
The cream felt a little heavy on my skin, in contrast to its light, buttery feel on my fingers. It was almost a pore-clogging sensation, and it worried me. But I used the cream daily and had no breakouts, so the slightly unpleasant feeling didn’t indicate any problems. It absorbs quickly, so maybe that’s the secret.
I did notice a rapid fading of the redness in my nose and cheeks when I used the cream but it doesn’t appear to be a long-term effect. I still have enough product to keep using it for another month or two, so maybe it takes longer to see something more permanent. This did become my go-to anytime I wanted to run a quick errand and not bother with makeup, though. Just one pearl-sized dab was enough to tone down the red and make me look a little less like a cousin of Rudolph. I also discovered that a couple pumps mixed into my usual post-shower lotion helped with any itchiness after shaving my legs. Although this product is very reasonably priced as a facial product, it’s a bit high for daily use on the legs, but I thought it was a feature worth noting. Those botanicals really do work.
So what’s in the Serenity Calming Cream? The base consists mainly of shea butter, glycerin, caprylic/capric triglyceride (coconut oil) and Tocopherol (vitamin E). It also contains beta-glucan, a polysaccharide that when taken as a supplement, is reported to have immune-enhancing properties. Topically, it is thought to promote skin healing and collagen synthesis.
When it comes to botanicals, the Serenity Calming Cream has several heavy-hitters, including calendula which is used for burns, rashes and other skin irritations, and horse chestnut, which is well-known for its ability to improve vascular health and help reduce the appearance of broken capillaries. Chamomile also makes an appearance, as does turmeric, both of which are known for their anti-inflammatory properties.
Overall, there is more to like than dislike in this product. The odd heavy feel on my face doesn’t last and at least in my own case was not an indication of any real problem. The product is priced affordably for the number of useful botanicals it contains and although I’m disappointed to see no evidence of long-term effects, it delivers in the short term and makes a nice addition to any ruddy-cheeked woman’s arsenal.