Dr. Barbara Sturm Logo

Dr. Barbara Sturm

Face Cream Rich

1.69 fl. oz. for $ 230.00
Expert Rating

Expert Reviews

Community Reviews



Brand Overview

The reason jar packaging is detrimental to anti-aging formulas such as this is because many antioxidants and key skin-restoring ingredients are sensitive to air and light. Every time you unscrew a jar’s cap, it exposes these beneficial ingredients to the elements that cause them to break down and lose their effectiveness. (We go into more detail about this via the More Info section.)

Otherwise Face Cream Rich would have earned our praise for featuring gentle yet effective ingredients that hydrate and fight signs of aging. It’s not the most state-of-the-art formula, especially considering what you’d expect to get for this price, but it delivers on its promise of fortifying skin with antioxidants that soothe skin.

As you’ll find with many of Dr. Sturm’s products, the brand specifically highlights their use of a purslane as a powerhouse antioxidant. It’s true that purslane is a great source of beneficial vitamins, minerals, and omega-3 fatty acids—all of which contribute to visibly healthier skin by reducing oxidative damage and inflammation. And here it’s combined with a soothing probiotic strain that may help improve skin’s microbiome. But again, the jar packaging here compromises the stability, making both ingredients less exciting.

The texture of Face Cream Rich actually isn’t as dense as we had anticipated given the name, but it’s still plenty creamy enough to supply ample moisture to dry skin.

In terms of the claim that this can tighten skin, keep your expectations realistic. If skin is truly experiencing loss of firmness the antioxidants in here can help with that in a roundabout way, but yet again, their efficacy will be compromised by the packaging, so there are better ways to get those kinds of ingredients.

The bottom line: Face Cream Rich ends up just being a so-so option. Get more bang for your buck out of the formulas on our best moisturizers page.

  • Contains gentle yet effective ingredients that fight signs of aging.
  • Creamy formula replenishes moisture.
  • Fragrance free.
  • Jar packaging compromises many of the best ingredients in the formula.
  • Not likely to live up to the skin-tightening claim.

More Info: Beneficial anti-aging ingredients, which include all plant extracts, almost all vitamins, antioxidants, and other state-of-the-art ingredients, are unstable, which means they begin to break down in the presence of air. Once a jar is opened and lets air in, these important ingredients begin to deteriorate, becoming less and less effective. Routine exposure to daylight is also problematic for these ingredients.

Jar packaging is also unsanitary because you dip your fingers into the jar with each use, contaminating the product. This stresses the preservative system, especially in water-based formulas, leading to further deterioration of the beneficial ingredients.

Remember: The ingredients that provide the most benefit in addressing visible signs of aging must be in airtight or air-restrictive packaging to remain effective throughout usage. Buying products in this type of packaging means that the ingredients have the best chance of remaining effective—to the benefit of your skin.

References for this information:
Molecules, July 2018, ePublication
Pharmacology Review, July 2013, pages 97–106
Dermatologic Therapy, May-June 2012, pages 252–259
Current Drug Delivery, November 2011, pages 640–660
Journal of Agricultural Food Chemistry, May 2011, pages 4676–4683
Journal of Biophotonics, January 2010, pages 82–88
Guidelines of Stability Testing of Cosmetic Products, Colipa-CTFA, March 2004, pages 1–10

Jar Packaging: Yes
Tested on animals: No

A rich face cream formulated with purslane and potent antioxidants that absorb into the skin to soothe, calm, and tighten the skin.

Water (Aqua), Octyldodecanol, Urea, Glycerin, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Decyl Oleate, Zea Mays (Corn) Germ Oil, C12­15 Alkyl Benzoate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Hydrogenated Vegetable Glycerides, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Lactobacillus/Portulaca Oleracea Ferment Extract, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Sorbitol, Propanediol, Potassium Cetyl Phosphate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Dimethicone, Phytosterols, Panthenol, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Baicalin, Phenoxyethanol, Hydrogenated Palm Glycerides, Carbomer, Xanthan Gum, Ethylhexylglycerin, Potassium Sorbate, Alcohol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Pantolactone, Citric Acid, Ascorbic Acid.

As the founder behind her namesake line, Dr. Barbara Sturm has a long history as a physician specializing in aesthetics. As the story goes, Dr. Sturm translated the science from her clinical research on inflammation into what has now evolved into her line of “molecular” skin care products.

The brand is self-described as being “formulated for those who yearn for an uncomplicated, yet highly effective skincare regime that provides hydration, nutrition and regeneration glow.” So, do the products live up to the hype? Yes… and no.

As with most skin care brands, some of Dr. Sturm’s products are well-formulated while others fall short. While many of the formulas are beneficial, we have to point out that they’re not quite as robust in terms of a well-rounded mix of ingredients when compared to the top formulas that we review. That doesn’t make them bad, it’s just less state-of-the-art than we’d anticipate, especially at such a high price point.

One thing that stands out as a positive is that the formulas tend to steer clear of irritating fragrance and other known skin sensitizing ingredients. Dr. Sturm is also known for using beneficial antioxidants, including super antioxidant purslane.

On the downside, a handful of the products come in jar packaging, which compromises their efficacy. As for the cost, we’ll leave it up to you to decide if it’s within your budget.

To learn more about the brand in their own words, visit drsturm.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.

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our terms of use here.