Because Aveda was, in its day (1978!), such a breakthrough company in bringing high performance, botanically-based products that better serve the planet to a world full of department store cold cream, I expect a lot of its founder’s latest venture, Intelligent Nutrients. I wasn’t blown away though by Intelligent Nutrients’ Harmonic Shampoo, so I am hoping I’ll see the clever side of the Antiaging Serum ($60).

In terms of botanical antiagers, Intelligent Nutrients’ serum has a roll-call of all the obvious ones and more besides. The question to me is whether leaves and buds can perform without backup from wrinkle repairing growth factors and collagen boosting peptides. Intelligent Nutrients’ claims are as modest as the simple paper carton the bottle of serum is packaged in, simply saying it is “restorative”.

I would expect at least that from the cranberry, grape, raspberry and pumpkin – all good antioxidants – in a base of safflower and argan oil. I am particularly intrigued by nigella seed oil. This is a well-researched antioxidant, due to the presence of a component called thymoquinone (source). Although a German study points to potential for allergic reactions from topical use.

The Intelligent Nutrient website promises that its Antiaging Serum “instantly improves skin appearance and luminosity” and will prevent and correct signs of aging. So far, I can say that it lives up to the first claim. This yellowy-green oil certainly gives my skin a non-greasy sheen. Whether it will prevent and correct, I’ll let you know in a few weeks.

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Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil (Safflower, 1), Argania Spinosa (Argan) Kernel Oil (Argan, 1), Vitis Vinifera Seed Oil (Red Grape, 1, 2), Rubus Idaeus Seed Oil (Red Raspberry, 1, 2), Vaccinium Macrocarpon Seed Oil (Cranberry, 1, 2), Cucurbita Pepo Seed Oil (Pumpkin, 1, 2), Nigella Sativa Seed Oil (Black Cumin, 1, 2), Euterpe Oleracea (Acai) Fruit Oil (Acai, 1), Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Flower Oil (Orange, 1), Helichrysum Angustifolium Flower Oil (Everlasting, 1), Daucus Carota Sativa (Carrot) Seed Oil (Carrot, 1), Cananga Odorata (Ylang Ylang) Flower Oil (Ylang Ylang, 1), Rosa Centifolia Flower Extract (Rose, 1), Pelargonium Graveolens Flower Oil (Geranium, 1), Chamomilla Recutita Flower Oil (Matricaria, 1), Anthemis Nobilis (Roman Chamomile) Flower Oil (Chamomile, 1), Cistus Labaniferus (Labdanum) Oil (1), Beeswax (Apis Mellifera) (Cera Alba, 1), Limonene (1, 3), Linalool (1, 3), Geraniol (1, 3), Citronellol (1, 3), Farnesol (1, 3), Benzyl Benzoate (1, 3), Benzyl Salicylate (1, 3), Tocopherol (Vitamin E)

1. Certified organic; 2 Antioxidant Intellimune Seed Oil Complex; 3 Naturally Occurring Component of Organic Essential Oil Blend