Clarifying Booster Drops
e.l.f.’s Clarifying Booster Drops have the potential to help skin look brighter and clearer, but unfortunately also include some ingredients that revive some old-school ideas of what it means for a skin care product to be “clarifying.”
Housed in a clear bottle with a glass dropper, this serum should be stored in a dark place to keep some of its ingredients from breaking down in the presence of light. Its lightweight texture works for all skin types and it dries down to a non-sticky finish.
e.l.f. says this product contains clarifying ingredients that can even skin’s complexion. This does contain niacinamide, or vitamin B3, which research shows can brighten skin and make pores appear smaller, as well as reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles.
The other clarifying ingredients here include tea tree oil, witch hazel leaf extract, and rosemary oil. High concentrations of tea tree oil have been shown to help treat acne in some instances, but there’s likely not enough here to make an impact, and the ingredient also has the potential to irritate skin. Witch hazel extract and rosemary oil are also potential irritants, meaning this product puts skin at risk for damage, which isn’t pretty (see More Info below for details).
In the past, many products claiming to clarify skin have included irritants, but skin irritation should not be a part of achieving a clearer complexion! You’ll find much gentler options on our list of best serums (which includes better boosters as well).
- Lightweight serum texture works for all skin types.
- Includes skin-brightening, pore-minimizing niacinamide.
- Contains irritating witch hazel extract and rosemary oil.
- Tea tree oil has the potential to irritate skin.
- Needs to be stored out of direct light to protect its beneficial ingredients.
Irritating Ingredients: We cannot stress this enough: Sensitizing, harsh, abrasive, and/or fragrant ingredients are bad for all skin types. Daily application of skincare products that contain these irritating ingredients is a major way we unwittingly do our skin a disservice!
Irritating ingredients are a problem because they can lead to visible problems, such as redness, rough skin, dull skin, dryness, increased oil production, and clogged pores, and they contribute to making signs of aging worse.
Switching to non-irritating, gentle skincare products can make all the difference in the world. Non-irritating products are those packed with beneficial ingredients that also replenish and soothe skin, without any volatile ingredients, such as those present in fragrance ingredients, whether natural or synthetic.
A surprising fact: Research has demonstrated that you do not need to see or feel the effects of irritants on your skin for your skin to be suffering, and visible damage may not become apparent for a long time. Don’t get lulled into thinking that if you don’t see or feel signs of irritation, everything is OK.
Generally, it’s best to eliminate, or minimize as much as possible, your exposure to ingredients that are known to irritate skin. There are many completely non-irritating products that contain effective ingredients, so there’s no reason to put your skin at risk with products that include ingredients research has shown can be a problem.
References for this information:
Journal of Dermatological Sciences, January 2015, pages 28–36
International Journal of Cosmetic Science, August 2014, pages 379–385
Clinical Dermatology, May-June 2012, pages 257–262
Aging, March 2012, pages 166–175
Chemical Immunology and Allergy, March 2012, pages 77–80
Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, June 2008, pages 124–135
Food and Chemical Toxicology, February 2008, pages 446–475
American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 2003, pages 789–798
This lightweight booster supercharges your routine with clarifying ingredients for a more even looking complexion. These concentrated drops can be used alone or added into any foundation, liquid or cream.
e.l.f. (it stands for which stands for Eyes, Lips, Face) was founded by Scott Vincent Borba and Joseph Shamah. The story goes that one day Borba was shopping in a dollar store and noticed women dressed in designer clothing and sporting designer handbags loading up their baskets with inexpensive nail polish, eye pencils, and lip balm. He took note of the products being sold in such stores and quickly decided he could offer products of even higher quality at the same competitive price. His idea paid off, as e.l.f. has enjoyed continued success and increased distribution online and in retail stores.
For a line offering many products for just a dollar (OK, there are plenty that cost $3 and $5, too), there are a surprising number of hits in the mix (especially the makeup brushes). True, not everything is going to be as luxurious or innovative as some higher-end brands, but overall you're likely to be impressed with what they developed for so little money, and you may just find some beauty bargains!
For more information about e.l.f., call (800) 231-4732 or visit www.eyeslipsface.com.
About the Experts
The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.
Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.