I make no apologies for this product line's obscurity - in the US. It's all the rage in Germany and half of Europe is abuzz. My esthetician, Ildi Pekar, tracked down Dr Spiller's Biocosmetic range during her last trip to Europe and is now stocking the rather sleekly packaged range. She gave me samples of Celltresor Gel and Celltresor Creme.

The trial-sized vials held enough for about two weeks of use; long enough to see some results. The idea is to use the gel first, like a serum, and follow it with the cream, which (despite its thick texture) is absorbed within mili-seconds. Those results I mentioned were complexion clarity and skin firming. Perhaps, after more than two weeks, one would see wrinkles diminish as well. Actually, I liked the trial experience enough to purchase full-sized versions next time I see Ildi, so I'll let you know.

Many of Dr Spiller's products seem to be big on aloe (a powerful antioxidant as well as moisturizer) so it is fitting that aloe leaf extract is the second most dominant ingredient in both the creme and the gel. In the gel hibiscus plays an important role. The antioxidant capacities of this flower seem to be well documented and due to the presence of a flavonoid called anthocyanin. Red Clover (deservedly the state flower of Vermont) is an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant that also has a good clinical pedigree to back it up. Less certain is the therapeutic power of uncaria tomentosa (cat's claw). It seems to be an anti-inflammatory but the jury is well out on other claims (that it cures cancer and AIDs).

The gel also contains the usual array of vitamins, which are too common (although perfectly effective) to dwell on here. There is more notably the antioxidant matrixyl (pentapeptide-3), which is also in the cream. Also notable, but for less positive reasons, are the number of perfume ingredients that are also known irritants: alpha-isomethyl ionone, hydroxyisohexyl 3-cyclohexene carboxaldehyde and butyphenyl methylproponial. However, I had no adverse reactions.

The cream has argan oil and mango seed. I just did a bit of research on mangos to discover that they are impressive superfruits worthy of a future post. On the other hand, I'd love to know what amaranthus caudatus is doing here, since I can't find any information about medicinal or therapeutic uses. Boswellia is Indian frankincense and an anti-inflammatory, while cyclopia genistoides leaf extract (honeybush) is deemed to be a potent antioxidant, according to a number of sources.

Apart from a few silicones, there is nothing to dislike.

Ingredients in Celltresor Gel

Aqua, aloe barbadensis,leaf extract, pentylene glycol, glycerin,hibiscus sabdariffa flower extract, trifolium pratense(clover) flower extract, uncaria tomentosa extract, sodium hyaluronate, phospholipids, retinol, sodium ascorbyl phosphate, tocopheryl acatate,panthenol, sodium pca, butylene glycol, hydroxyethylcellulose, xanthan gum, sodium carbomer, propylene glycol, disodium edta, alcohol denat, (sd alcohol 39-c), potassium phosphate, palmitoyl pentapeptide-3, polysorbate 20, parfum(fragrance), hydroxyisohexyl 3-cyclohexene carboxaldehyde, alpha-isomethyl ionone, buttylphenyl methylpropional, linalool, hexyl cinnamal, limonene, benzyl salicylate, citronellol, cinnamyl, alcohol, hidroxycitronellal.

Ingredients in Celltresor Creme:

Aqua, aloe barbadensis leaf extract, isohexadecane, cyclopentasiloxane, polyglyceryl-2,
dipolyhydroxystearate, glycerin,
pentylene glycol, argania spinosa kernel oil, mangifera indica (mango)
seed butter, amaranthus caudatus, c12-15 alkyl benzoate, ethylhexyl
methoxycinnamate, polyglyceryl-3 diisostearate, urea, glyceryl
stearate, cera alba (beeswax), disteardimonium hectorite, magnesium
silicate, stearalkonium hectorite, tocopherol, lecithin, centella
asiatica, leaf extract, boswelia serrata extract, sodium carboxymethyl
betaglucan, cyclopia genistoides leaf extract, trifolium pratense (clover)
flower extract, sodium hyaluronate, ascorbyl palmitate, butylene glycol,
c30-45 alkyl cetearyl dimethicone crosspolymer, octyldodecanol, zinc
stearate, disodium edta,citric acid, sodium lactate,ethylhexyl
isonanoate, carbomer, polysorbate 20, glyceryloleate, palmitoyl
pentapeptide-3, parfum (fragrance), hydroxyisohexyl 3-cyclohexene
carboxaldehyde, alpha-isomethyl ionone, butylphenyl methylpropional,
linalool, hexyl cinnamal, limonene, benzyl
salicylate, citronellol, cinnamyl alcohol, hydroxycitronellal.