Recently Dermelect very nicely provided me with two of their products to review. Both are in their Self-Esteem line of skin care and are designed to work in tandem. The first is the Self-Esteem Beauty Sleep Serum and the second is the Self-Esteem Neck Firming Lift.
The Self-Esteem Beauty Sleep Serum (retail $42) contains one fluid ounce of product. The product itself weighed in at 2.5 ounces. So basic math tells us that the glass bottle weighs 1.5 ounces. I love when the math is straightforward. As with all of my skin care trials, I used the product for two weeks. At the end of the two weeks the bottle of serum weighed in at 2.25 ounces. Since I know the glass didn’t get any lighter, that means that in two weeks I used 0.25 ounces of the serum. A simple extrapolation means that the entire bottle of serum, used at this level would last about eight weeks.
For me the eight week length of serum is more or less compatible with other serums I’ve tried. I actually expected it to be a little less to be honest as it is designed to be used on the neck and face. While I try to use most serums in the same way, I often forget the neck. I think the difference is because it is designed to be used at night rather than both the night and the day. I’m guessing the surface area of face and neck once a day versus just face twice a day evens out. Anyway, what that means in terms of cost is that it breaks down to 56 days of use with $0.75 per day for this product.
But a product is only good if it works and to see if it works it is necessary to see what it is supposed to do. According to the website:
Dual function facial + décolleté overnight serum utilizes three types of concentrated amino-acids to target the appearance of fine lines, wrinkling and large pores resulting in a brighter, more even-looking complexion. Fine lines, dark age spots, clogged pores and wrinkles are all telltale signs of aging, photo-aging and unhealthy skin. Self-Esteem Beauty Sleep Serum is a highly concentrated, anti-aging, exfoliator that stimulates collagen-building cell activity while working to help reduce wrinkling.
The recommended application was to apply from the hairline, over the face neck and décolleté (upper chest area) every evening before bed so it can soak in while you sleep.
So knowing the use and the expected results, I opened the bottle. The serum is a tannish brown and when I took a sniff I found it had a scent that to me smells a bit like toast. I know that sounds strange, but I tried to think of what else it could smell like but kept coming up with ‘vaguely toasted’. I personally liked the scent. I also have no idea what produces the scent. Nowhere in the listed ingredients is ‘toast’ listed. L. Ascorbic, glycolic and Salicylic Acids yes. Toast, no.
So I liked the smell and I applied the serum.. It applied well and to my relief the color disappeared as soon as it was on the skin. There was no staining from the color. It absorbed fast, my skin drinking it in. I was also worried about it getting on the pillow, but it was fully absorbed before I headed off to bed so that was not even an issue.
Since this serum is part of a two part plan to work on helping skin fight time, I’ll switch to the second part of the pair at this point and then put my reactions afterwards.
The second part of the plan is the Self-Esteem Neck Firming Lift cream. Upon arrival it weighed in at 2.75 ounces with a product amount listed as 2 ounces of product. While the serum comes in a glass bottle, the cream comes in a plastic jar. At the end of the two week trial the jar weighed in at an even 2 ounces. So the jar weighs 0.75 ounces and two weeks of use took 0.75 ounces of product so the cream should last a little over 6 weeks. As it too covered face, neck and upper chest, it worked over a lot of skin real estate so to speak. With a retail of $45 spread over six weeks (42 days) it means that the cream ends up costing about $1.07 per day for the cream.
And it’s claims:
A comprehensive blend of ingredients combine to help hydrate and streamline the appearance of the delicate skin of the neck, lower jaw, cheeks and chin area. Non-greasy formula- for all skin types.
When I opened the jar I took a sniff, wondering if this too would smell of toast. It did not. It was a white cream that smelled of absolutely nothing. A sniff let me know it was some sort of face cream, but that’s it. This cream is meant to be applied in the morning over the face and neck.
As it claims it is not greasy at all and it tends to absorb fast as well so there was little delay in continuing my morning routine. It did leave my skin looking shiny, not in a greasy way but more in a really clean way, if that makes any sense. My skin looked dull when I first applied it, the cream was absorbed and my skin looked like I had nothing on. Personally, I am okay with my skin looking clean even after I apply moisturizer. In addition, my skin did feel hydrated.
So serum at night and cream in the morning. Now that I had my recommended application, I started my trial. During the two weeks I did notice that there was a plumping and smoothing of the fine lines on my face, particularly around the sides of my mouth. I’m fairly certain the one line on my forehead is carved daily by my facial expressions and can’t be touched by anything short of an injectable filler, but truthfully it doesn’t bother me. I will say neither it or any other lines on my face deepened during the trial. To be honest I think a six month trial would be needed to really test the deepening of those lines though.
I did notice that my skin looked more even and I wasn’t getting as many clogged pores (those odd little bumps under the skin that look like they want to be pimples but just can’t put in the effort of fully erupting) as before.
While the line on my forehead doesn’t bother me, the skin on my neck does. As I’ve lost weight my neck skin goes through these odd cycles of sagging and then slowly shrinking back. It’s like my skin has to readjust to the body it covers. (which I suppose is exactly what is going on) While the rest of my body is more or less taking the adjustments in stride, mostly because I am going with the slow and steady weight loss and not losing a ton of weight all at once, the skin of my neck shows the adjustments.
Incidentally I tried to get pictures of my neck but the shadows in both the before and after photo obscured everything. To try and get the photo without the shadows I had to lan back and that strained my neck in both, making it look really strange. I need to pick up a light that isn’t an overhead light for these sorts of before and after photos in the future. Trust me, it is on my list.
I have to say, despite the lack of picture, the neck is where this duo really shines. I can study the fine lines of my face with a magnified mirror and debate effects on them for ages, but with my neck and décolleté I noticed the effect within two or three days. The skin on my neck and jaw line was less saggy looking and not as loose. The Self-esteem Beauty Sleep serum I can see using on my face and neck repeatedly. The cream was an okay moisturizer, but not my favorite. It is called a neck firming lift though and that is what it does.
Personally, I want to hoard it simply to use on my lower jaw, neck and upper chest. I will use some other product for my face. This is for my neck. It’s like that lunch you leave in the office fridge where you know if you don’t write your name on it someone else will take it because it looks better than what they brought. This cream is marked neck and now that my trial is done, it is not sharing with the face.
It will last longer and go where it is needed. I have to also add, I really like having something specifically detailed in my skin care regime for my neck. While I know my current issues are due to dieting and weight loss, I know the sagging skin issue is not going to go away over time and will just continue. Having something there reminds me to take care of my neck and not forget it when attempting to fight the signs of aging.
So the final judgement, would I use this again? Yes. I would use the serum as an all over (face, neck and décolleté) nightly serum, but I would restrict the use of the Self-esteem Neck Firming Lift cream to my neck. I understand why the directions call for it to be used for the whole face, but like I said, my neck is no longer sharing. I would get this solely for use on my neck. I am so glad I now know this cream exists.