Clarins Double Serum contains two anti-aging serums in separate chambers, which are combined together as one fluid each time you press the pump at the top of the bottle. According to the manufacturer, this delivery method guarantees that the precise amount of ingredients contained in Clarins Double Serum is applied each time for maximum results. Speaking of results, Clarins Double Serum is claimed to visibly firm, moisturize and smooth, boost radiance, even skin tone, and visibly minimize lines and wrinkles. Clarins conducted a satisfaction test with 362 women and concluded that the Double Serum visibly firmed, smoothed, and boosted radiance in just 7 days. Interestingly, they did not disclose the percentage of women that experienced these results.
Who is Clarins Double Serum for?
It is said that Clarins Double Serum can be used by all ages, all ethnicities, all skin types—even the most sensitive skin. The marketing for this product suggests that it is best for those with mature skin who want to correct the signs of aging. However, we are skeptical of these claims after evaluating the Clarins Double Serum formula. Read on to learn about the ingredients in Clarins Double Serum and why this formula may not give you the results you are looking for.
Clarins Double Serum Ingredients
Clarins Double Serum is formulated with 21 different plant extracts, but there’s one problem: all of these plant extracts are used in very low concentrations (less than 1%). We know this by looking at the ingredient list (which is in order of descending concentrations). 20 of the 21 plant extracts are listed after the preservative phenoxyethanol, which cannot be used in concentrations more than 1%. The one plant extract that comes before the preservative is Dipsacus sylvestris extract.
Dipsacus sylvestris, also known as wild teasel, is a species of flowering plant native to Eurasia and North Africa. Traditionally, Dipsacus sylvestris extract has been used to treat skin conditions such as warts, fistulae, and cancerous sores. Additionally, Dipsacus sylvestris extracts have been studied against Borrelia afzelii, a bacteria that causes Lyme disease. In skin care products, Dipsacus sylvestris extract is thought to provide anti-inflammatory effects.
On the Clarins website, oat kernel extract, avocado oil, and turmeric are listed as the key ingredients in the Double Serum. We will discuss the benefits of these individual ingredients, but keep in mind they are present in very low concentrations.
Clarins reports that Avena sativa (oat) kernel extract is included in the Double Serum formula to “visibly firm and lift” the skin. Oat kernel extract contains beta glucans (a type of sugar) that may be able to stimulate collagen production, resulting in a firming effect. Beta glucans also improve skin hydration, another property that makes oat kernel extract useful for anti-aging skin care products. Oat kernel extract also contains avenanthramides, a group of active polyphenol antioxidants that provide anti-inflammatory, anti-redness, anti-itch, and antihistamine effects when applied to the skin. Due to these properties, oat kernel extract is known to help a variety of inflammatory skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, acne, and dry, itchy skin.
Persea gratissima (avocado) oil is an excellent skin care ingredient because of its regenerative and moisturizing properties. A typical avocado oil has 76% monounsaturated fatty acids (oleic and palmitoleic acids), 12% polyunsaturated fatty acids (linoleic and linolenic acids), and 12% saturated fatty acids (palmitic and stearic acids). Most of these fatty acids benefit the skin by strengthening the skin’s lipid barrier. A strong, intact skin barrier prevents water loss and keeps harmful environmental irritants out of the skin. Avocado oil is also rich in vitamin E, a lipid soluble antioxidant that protects the skin from free radical damage and strengthens the skin barrier. Lastly, avocado oil has the ability to enhance the absorption of carotenoids and other nutrients. The use of avocado oil in Clarins Double Serum may help to promote soft, supple skin.
Curcuma longa (turmeric) root extract is known for its golden yellow color, and is typically used as a spice in curry dishes. Turmeric is also widely used for its medicinal properties, which are primarily due to the active component curcumin. Curcumin is a potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent, and also has antibacterial properties. Curcumin is known to provide protective effects against skin-damaging chemicals and environmental pollutants, as well as minimize the look of redness.
So if all of these key ingredients are used in very low concentrations, you may be wondering what actually makes up the majority of the Double Serum formula. The second highest concentration ingredient (after water) in Clarins Double Serum is cetearyl isononanoate, a type of emollient that will help the skin feel soft. There is also a high concentration of glycerin in the Double Serum. Glycerin is an effective humectant that grabs onto water and slows it from evaporating, thereby improving skin hydration. There are several more emollients found in high concentrations in Clarins Double Serum, including isononyl isononanoate, caprylic/capric triglyceride, PPG-3 myristyl ether, and more.
Another drawback of the Clarins Double Serum formula is the amount of fragrance present. Parfum/fragrance is present in a higher concentration than the majority of the beneficial ingredients in this serum. The term “parfum/fragrance” represents an undisclosed mixture of various scent chemicals, as well as ingredients used as fragrance dispersants such as diethyl phthalate. According to EWG, fragrance mixes have been associated with allergies, dermatitis, respiratory distress, and potential effects on the reproductive system. Even though Clarins states that those with sensitive skin can use Double Serum, you should use caution if you have sensitive skin due to the high amount of fragrance in this product.
How to use Clarins Double Serum
Clarins Double Serum can be used either in the morning or at night. You can turn the dial on the bottle to select a “customized dose” for your skin’s needs. After dispensing the serum, you have to mix both phases in the palm of your hands. Then, apply to clean face and neck with light pressing motions, working from the center of your face outward. It is suggested to follow with a day or night cream.
References: AOCS.org “What is unrefined, extra virgin cold-pressed avocado oil?” April 2010, EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetics Database “Fragrance”