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Skin Actives Lip Trio- reader reviewed and rejected

January 14, 2010 Reviewed by TIA Community Member 7 Comments
Reviewed by Kim

I recently got the opportunity to test Skin Actives Lip Trio set ($18.50). I was psyched to give this trio a try since I’m all about lip health. And from my experience, almost anything I put on my lips has the end result of just drying them out.

This set consists of Skin Actives top three lip health products. Liquid Rainbow, which claims to be a moisturizing anti-oxidant protection, Lip Collagen Serum, which boasts the ability to build and maintain collagen specifically formulated for lips, and finally the Lip Balm, which is also a moisturizer with anti-oxidant protection.

The packaging for this brand seems a bit cheap and homemade, which is fine by me if it means a smaller brand, producing smaller lots of product hopefully with more personal care.  Although I’m not above judging a book by its cover, what I really wanted to know was what’s inside these little bottles with big promises (“The most nutritive, moisturizing lip care product available on the market” Liquid Rainbow,  “Our serum will provide your lips with nutrients and growth factors that will improve health and looks” Collagen Lip Serum).

Allow me to break it down. The Liquid Rainbow, despite having a strangely unnatural iridescent glow, may be the least harmful of the bunch in terms of ingredients. It’s got a bunch of lipids and proteins, a form of vitamin c, lycopene (that great nutrient found in tomatoes), pomegranate seed oil, rosehip seed oil, even alpha lipoic acid. Its crazy iridescence comes from the cholesteryl oleyl carbonate, which is literally an organic liquid crystal.  I found this iridescence to give my lips a glow that was reminiscent of an 80’s frosted lip. However, when I used just barely a smidge, so little that the brush almost felt dry, it actually gave my lips a nice moisturized look, which I liked. The feel of it wasn’t much different from your typical gloss or balm.

The Collagen Lip Serum seemed most interesting to me at first glance, but when I started to get into its ingredients I was beginning to question the line all together. It has a bunch of parabens, which I generally avoid (especially if I’m going to be eating them). It also has propylene glycol, which like parabens, is the type of ingredient more natural brands brag about NOT having. Propylene glycol is a cosmetic form of mineral oil found in automatic brake and industrial antifreeze. The Material Safety Data Sheet warns users to avoid skin contact with propylene glycol as this strong skin irritant can cause liver abnormalities and kidney damage… eesh.  All the ingredients listed above these toxins actually seem pretty awesome.  But for me, it’s not worth it.  Despite that, I did test out the product so that I could give an honest assessment of how it performs.  It goes on like a light liquid, and although it’s brown, it doesn’t leave any color on your lips. The taste didn’t bother me. After it dries your lips feel ever so slightly sticky and that’s why you need to follow with the Liquid Rainbow or the Balm.  Which brings me to the third and final product in this little trio.

The first ingredient in the Lip Balm is petrolatum, a form of petroleum, banned in European cosmetics (unless the product states that it doesn't contain impurities). So basically I didn’t even need to read the rest of the list. This product is not for me. I did test it just to make sure it didn’t perform any miracles that I needed to share with you all. And no, it’s just your basic potentially hazardous lip balm.

For about two weeks I used the Collagen Serum with the Liquid Rainbow. And I have to say there were quite a few moments along my journey where I did think my lips looked a bit fuller and moisturized.  Despite hating some of the ingredients I didn’t hate the results. However, in a world filled with unavoidable toxins, I personally do everything I can to avoid them. In the long run, I imagine not just my lips will be healthier by keeping it natural and pure.

Ingredients in Liquid Rainbow

Cholesteryl Oleyl Carbonate, Cholesteryl Nonanoate, Cholesteryl Chloride, Peppermint essential oil, Pomegranate (Punica Granatum) Seed Oil, Rosehip (Rosa Affinis Rubiginosa) Seed Oil, Alpha-D-Tocopherol (vitamin E), Lycopene, Tocotrienols, Astaxanthin, Lutein, Alpha Lipoic Acid, Ascorbyl Palmitate,BHT

Ingredients in Lip Collagen

Distilled water, cherry juice, sea kelp (Macrocystis pyrifera) bioferment, pomegranate (Punica granatum) juice, sodium PCA, coconut (Cocos nucifera) endosperm, magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, sodium chondroitin sulfate, natural active peptides, fucoidan, L-carnosine, niacinamide, N-acetyl glucosamine, hyaluronic acid, liquorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra) extract, resveratrol, lycopene, epidermal growth factor, keratinocyte growth factor,  stevia (Stevia rebaudiana) extract, propylene glycol, diazolidinyl urea, methylparaben (and) propylparaben

Ingredients in Lip Balm

Petrolatum, safflower seed oil, candelilla wax, beeswax, cholesteryl oleyl carbonate (and) cholesteryl nonanoate (and) cholesteryl chloride, honey, pomegranate seed oil (and) astaxanthin (and) lycopene (and) alpha-D-tocopherol (and) tocotrienols (and) lutein (and) thioctic Acid, wax tree (/Rhus succedanea/) fruit wax, shea butter, peppermint essential oil
  • February 9, 2018

    by Nancy

    Wow! All I can say is that I use the Collagen Serum, Antiaging Cream, UV Repair cream, Antioxidant serum and the lip products. I've used these products for 5 years and at 56 my skin has never looked better. I get complements on my skin on a daily basis and I am told that I have beautiful skin. I have seen major improvements in y skin with Skin Actives. I trust Skin Actives. The owner and formulator is a real scientist and there is real science published on their website about the safety of parabens and all their other ingredients. I don't believe that they would ever use harmful ingredients in their products. Such a scathing review for such an ethical company.

  • February 10, 2010

    by Skin Actives

    I can't even try to convince people that our ingredients are safe and good for you. When it comes to parabens and vaccines, I found that scientifically supported arguments (please see our forum and newsletters) will not convince a sector of the population.

    It would be silly for our science-based company to be using unsafe ingredients when we are providing the most advanced ingredients ANYWHERE (yes, in caps because we are very proud of this). We don't save money in ingredients. Why, then, do we use petrolatum in our lip balm? Because it is a fantastic protector and non-allergenic and we use parabens because they are safe and effective. We do provide alternatives (see our website).

    The objective of our lip collagen serum is to re-build the proteins in our aging lips rather than to plump.

    Contact us at for more info.

  • January 16, 2010

    by marta

    Petrolatum is listed as a probable human carcinogen in the European Union's Dangerous Substances Directive (UNECE 2004), and its use in cosmetics was going to be banned by September 2004 with the following caveat:

    “The classification as a carcinogen need not apply if the full refining history is known and it can be shown that the substance from which it is produced is not a carcinogen.”

    Chemical industry sources have interpreted this clause to mean that petrolatum will continue to be allowed in cosmetics in the EU if it is refined and meets PAH purity standards for food set by FDA (Faust and Casserly 2003).

    I have asked Erin, our ingredients editor, to clarify and update the status of petrolatum in the EU and US and we'll post in a few days.

  • January 15, 2010

    by JulieK

    I've never had "plump, full" lips- not even in my glorious youth. It was in my (probably) late 30s that my daughter examined my face and declared, "Mom, your lips are disappearing." GREAT! This was in the 80s, and I was a single mom, had no time to worry about disappearing lips. Forget about it! But I did keep an eye on them through the years. I mean, come on- I didn't really want a straight line there. Yet somehow I also never used any product claiming to puff those puppies up. I didn't then believe it, nor do I now believe that we can do much to change what our lips are gonna do naturally as we age. But good news- after that pre-feminist "review" of my lips- they've pretty much stayed the same. With the help of YBF Quench and now Define (for the outer vertical lines that were of far more of a concern) I'm happy to say I still have a pucker! ~jk

  • January 15, 2010

    by Arandjel

    But since you are publishing these reviews on your blog, it seems a bit irresponsible of you to let people make all kinds of wild claims; not to mention the impact it has on your credibility. Which is probably why you've now added on to the reader's original sentence (still not completely truthful, though).

  • January 15, 2010

    by marta

    Kim is a reader reviewer and I don't expect our readers to fact check everything. However, it is true that it is not banned but the EU requires product makers to provide a certificate saying the petroleum used is carcinogen-free - otherwise they can't use it..

  • January 15, 2010

    by Arandjel

    Petrolatum banned in European cosmetics? Uhm...ok. Whatever happened to double checking facts? Just because you say it, doesn't mean it's true. I currently live in Europe, and can assure you it's far from banned here.

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