Wednesday, February 17, 2016

SKINCARE | La Prairie Cellular Swiss Ice Crystal Eye Cream Review

It has been about 6 months since I last mentioned La Prairie (here) and ever since my first experience with a number of their products, I have been itching to try more. I immediately fell in love with the Cellular Swiss Ice Crystal (CSIC) Dry Oil. I also enjoyed the CSIC Cream moisturizer. How I happened upon the La Prairie Cellular Swiss Ice Crystal Eye Cream* (20mL/$350.00 CDN) was my seemingly odd reaction to the Essence of Skin Caviar Eye Complex. La Prairie was generous enough to send me a "second chance" at eye cream and I was determined to make sure it worked! I made sure there was no lactose in the ingredients list and then started my new eye care journey!


What do I look for in an eye cream? After trying so many, I realize that I am fairly uncomplicated when it comes to my undereye needs at this point in my life. I actually prefer a very creamy and hydrating eye cream as opposed to an oil-free one, but there is a fine line between "oh my goodness this is wonderful" and "oh my goodness, this is too rich and now I have milia". The second component I like in an eye cream is one that makes my eyes appear less tired after a late night of blogging after work.


For the last two months plus Oct-Nov, I have been using CSIC Eye Cream specifically at night. This is an eye cream that promises to give skin around the eyes a refreshed and fatigue-free appearance by diminishing the appearance of dark circles, puffiness and fine lines. It also protects the delicate undereye area against environmental aggressors by replenishing skin with nutrients and "age-delaying" fortifiers which in this case is a proprietary blend known as the Cellular Swiss Ice Crystal Complex. This is a blend of ingredients harvested from Alpine survivalist plants known to survive even the most harsh of conditions. This concept of "grafting" plant properties like this into skincare products is something that has been shown to work in vitro, but topically is a bit of challenge because of how thick the epidermis actually is.  


The packaging is nothing short of luxurious. It's La Prairie and I would expect nothing less! The scent of this is now a fragrance I want to bottle up! It is so good! I know I shouldn't be distracted by scent, but I am only a beauty product-loving human. It comes with a little silver-coloured spatula to scoop out just the right amount of product for AM/PM.



I was hoarding this eye cream a little because of the price so I mainly used it at night with the exception of a few mornings where I looked particularly tired. It is quite nice in the mornings because there is a very slight cooling effect upon application and does not leave a tacky residue. You can start makeup application right away. When I saw that there was shea butter in this eye cream, I thought my undereyes would suffocate from too much moisture, but I was so wrong! The texture is like a gel, but moisturizes like a cream. I was also able to use it all around my orbital bone and not just on my undereyes as it did not burn or sting.


The featured ingredients in this eye cream are: glycoproteins, Panax ginseng root extract and horsetail extract which are currently all part of a new patent pending for La Prairie's exclusive Cellular Complex. Though the ingredients list is long, the good stuff is actually relatively close to the top half of the list.

Glycoproteins essentially are cell to cell communicators and my favourite examples of glycoproteins are found in the immune system such as antibodies as they are released in response to stress or foreign bodies (allergies or disease). They bind foreign bodies or antigens in the hopes of clearing the body of the external aggressor. This is probably the most apt example as glycoproteins also play a role in cellular repair and gives rise to derivatives such as hyaluronic acid (oooh!) which we are VERY interested in! (Sear et, al, Feb.2016)

Panax ginseng root extract has been demonstrated to induce the synthesis of type 1 collagen which is another thing we want! This journal article was actually quite educational (Binic et al., Feb. 2016) as it is one of the first NCBI articles that specifically focused on plant ingredients in cosmetic anti-aging products!

Horsetail extract has been shown on many occasions to have an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effect on cells in vivo. I had trouble finding any literature regarding the effects of horsetail extract when used topically with the exception of this article that concluded that horsetail extract is highly more moisturizing than other herbal ingredients.


Ingredients: water (aqua), glycerin, butylene glycol, caprylic/capric triglyceride, coco-caprylate/caprate, sorbitan stearate, butyrospermum parkii (shea butter), cetyl alcohol, PTFE, boron nitride, glycoproteins*, panax ginseng root extract*, equisetum arvense extract*, lactobacillus ferment, saccharomyces cerevisiae extract, saxfriga oppositifolia extract, soldanella alpina 
extract, chlamydomonas extract, saponaria pumila callus culture extract, strelitzia nicolai seed aril extract, nicotiana sylvestris leaf cell culture, caffeine, sodium hyaluronate, soluble collagen, arnica montana flower extract, chondrus crispus powder, chitosan, tocopherol, lecithin, arginine, lysine Hcl, threonine, glycine, histidine, serine, calcium pantothenate, folic acid, tryptophan, ascorbic acid, sodium chondroitin sulfate, lactic acid, ascorbyl palmitate, propylene glycol, PEG-8, sodium hydroxide, citric acid, magnesium sulfate, sodium chloride, potassium chloride, pentylene glycol, glucose, maltodextrin, calcium chloride, carbomer, sodium phosphate, isomalt, fragrance, linalool, benzyl alcohol, citroellol, hydroxycitronellal, alpha-isomethyl ionone, amyl cinnamal, hexyl cinnamal, evernia Furfuracea (treemoss) extract, benzyl benzoate, geraniol, butylphenyl methylpropianol, ethylhexylglycerin, phenoxyethanol (TYPED BY HAND!)  

Final verdict: Let me just say that this is a luxury product so there are certain properties that are inherent in the price. I could never compare this to a drugstore eye cream because this is in a completely different category and targeted for a certain clientele. What I will stick to is whether this eye cream lived up to its claims. Did it help with making my eyes look refreshed? Yes, that cooling effect actually felt like extra puff was getting squeezed out plus there is caffeine. Did it help with dark circles? Not that I could really tell. I've never really believed that dark circles can be erased. Did it hydrate? Of course! And it did this without giving me milia which is fantastic. It was my perfect texture.

Would I buy it? You know what, I want to believe in the ingredients and in the patented complex. In theory, they stand a good chance at working and I do not see the usual list of fillers that I normally see in most
 brands of eye cream. I am going to say MAYBE. I have spent $200 on eye cream before because I liked the ingredients so based on my own personal spending habits I might just spend $350. I don't spend a lot on clothes or even other areas of beauty. Skincare is my #1! 

La Prairie can be found at Holt Renfrew and Nordstrom.
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