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I get a little jittery when the percentage points of exfoliating actives get above the rate of inflation. I eyed the 1 percent of retinol, 7 percent glycolic (goodness!) and 1 percent salicylic acid of Glo Therapeutics Renew Serum ($43) warily for some time before cautiously starting my trial period with a few patch tests. My concerns proved to be unfounded — although I am careful about how I use this serum. My verdict: Renew Serum delivers a very decent resurfacing formula at a price that won’t move the Consumer Price Index.
Using Renew Serum at night only, I found that I got the best results on my neck. Here the skin is less sensitive than my face, and its scaly rough texture is most in need of some resurfacing help. This serum has made my neck feel and look much softer, and I will certainly continue to use it for even more improvement.
On my face, this serum was tingly for a few minutes and left my skin looking a little red and inflamed. I also used it every other night on my lip lines, since they need the help and I was willing to endure any amount of tingling in return for a reduction of depth. It turned out to be a price worth paying for the visible line smoothing. Renew Serum is a keeper.
Although, glycolic, retinol and salicylic acid are leading the anti-aging charge, there’s a lot more to Renew Serum. For a start, there’s spin trap, a very useful molecule that stops free radicals spinning out of control and causing damage to skin cells. It is the signature ingredient in Your Best Face products, but otherwise you don’t see too much of it around.
There’s an abundance of vitamin B – in four forms no less, biotin, pyridoxine HCI, niacinamide and B5 (panthenol). As well as providing anti-aging benefits (niacinamide, for example, controls melanin and reduces wrinkles), the B family is helpful for acne. This makes Renew Serum with its salicylic acid great for breakout control.
The well-chosen botanical extract is amla, also known as Indian Gooseberry. It is very rich in vitamin C and antioxidant tannins. Amongst other things, it can suppress pigmentation and reduce wrinkles. Although there’s unidentified fragrance and alcohol, there’s nothing else to dislike. Even the preservatives are naturally-sourced, including honeysuckle and Totarol. The latter is supposed to also help with acne and rosacea.
Overall, this is a great exfoliating treatment that is nicely rounded out with anti-aging ingredients. Those like me with sensitive skin will want to approach it with a little care, but those who tolerate glycolic and retinol well will find Renew Serum a welcome warrior in the battle for even skin tone.