As a happy TIA “VIP,” I had the chance to try and comment on the KaplanMD Replenishing Night Cream just in time for the start of the holiday (and cold weather) season.  I knew that KaplanMD products have had generally good press from the TIA community,  and hoped that the cream’s good credentials and TIA-approved ingredients would make for noticeable improvements in hydration and appearance.

Yet my overall reaction (entirely out of character, I might add) is ambivalent.  This really bothers me—I’d rather offer a rave, or at least an amusing dis.  But my experience is sadly middle-of-the-road.  And I guess that’s not where I’d want to be on a product sporting a passing-lane price tag.

I’ve been using it for about a month, at night (duh), and often over other products like the tried-and-true Nutra-Lift C serum, sometimes alone, but always with an eye cream.  Perhaps, in fairness to KaplanMD, the mad-scientist tendency that TIA has unleashed in us all (what a monster Marta has wrought!)—mixing and matching across product lines and formulations—doesn’t allow each line to do its best.   I’d be curious to know whether others who use the entire suite in concert have had a better experience.

On the positive side, the product has a really nice, unusually light texture that absorbs immediately (at least on my sometimes dry and always middle-aged face), leaving just a trace and a hint of moisture:  no oiliness, no glop.   Skin feels smoother and fairly well-hydrated as I approach the morning coffee pot.  But I’m not sure it’s out-performed a bevy of cheaper options (e.g., La Vie Celeste), and I can’t say it’s done anything at all for fine lines.  And in fact, in the last week I’ve been plagued by some small and uncharacteristic break-outs.

Now those may be the result of my recent frenetic exercise habit, or of the existential holiday blues:  I hesitate to lay them at Kaplan’s door.  But overall, while I find Replenishing Night Cream an adequate product, I can’t, unfortunately, find a “wow” factor either.  Certainly at $145 list price, it is a better option than the products flogged by preternaturally smooth-faced blondes at department store cosmetic counters, but I am unconvinced that it trumps products selling for half that tariff.