La Roche-Posay

Substiane (+)

1.35 fl. oz. for $ 56.99
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Brand Overview

The claim for this lightly fragranced product is that it is "replenishing care for mature skin." First, being "mature" is not a skin type. Not everyone over a certain age has the same type of skin. Women of all ages can have oily skin, blemishes, rosacea, blackheads, and more, and this formula won't address any of those skin conditions. Plus, what age is mature skin supposed to be? Is it over 50? 60? 70? It doesn't matter, because as we said, age is not a skin type.

Aside from the issue of age, this emollient, basic moisturizer is decent enough, although its claims exceed what the formula can really do. It does contain a small amount of skin-repairing ingredients and antioxidants, but it should contain a more generous amount—something women of any age need. It also has silica and cornstarch high up on the ingredient list, which are absorbents that have nothing to do with replenishing whatsoever, and, to some extent, these reduce the moisturizing properties of the other ingredients.

What this also contains is something called Pro-xylane,a made-up term representing a group of ingredients in the formula. This patented trade name was coined by L'Oreal, who happens to own La Roche-Posay. You would think that if this blend of ingredients was so special, then other L'Oreal-owned companies would use it, too, but they don't. This ends up being a good emollient base, but there is no research showing it has special benefit for skin. It certainly isn't a must-have.

Overall this is an average moisturizer for dry skin, but that's about it.


  • Contains some good emollients for dry skin.

  • Expensive for what amounts to an average formula.
  • Age is not a skin type, so the "mature skin" designation isn't helpful.
  • Pro-xylane isn't a wonderful, must-have ingredient blend.
  • The absorbent ingredients keep this from being as moisturizing as it otherwise would be.
  • Contains a small amount of fragrance, which isn't the best for skin.
Jar Packaging: No
Tested on animals: Yes

Replenishing care for mature skin. Daily treatment moisturizer formulated with Pro-Xylane 5% and LINACTYL 4% to help re-densify mature skin and restore skin's substance to help visibly reinforce skin structure.

Water, Glycerin, Shea Butter, Cyclohexasiloxane, Apricot Kernel Oil, Pentaerythrityl Tetraethylhexanoate, Isohexadecane, Corn Starch, Silica, Hydroxypropyl Tetrahydropyrantriol, Beeswax, Stearic Acid, Dimethicone, Palmitic Acid, PEG-100 Stearate, Glyceryl Stearate, Propylene Glycol, PEG-20 Stearate, Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ether Dimethyl Silane, Stearyl Alcohol, Dimethiconol, Arginine PCA, Serine, Disodium EDTA, Hydrolyzed Linseed Extract, Acetyl Dipeptide-1 Cetyl Ester, Polysorbate 80, Acrylamide/ Sodium Acryloyldimethyltaurate Copolymer, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-Di-T-Butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol, Benzoic Acid, Fragrance

La Roche-Posay At-A-Glance

L'Oreal-owned La Roche-Posay has a pharmaceutical lineage based in France, and the company speaks of their thermal spring water as the cornerstone of their commitment to dermatological skin care. In fact, the name La Roche-Posay comes from the French town that is the source of this water, which is said to be a rich in selenium. While selenium is an element that has potent antioxidant ability, it's unclear how much the water La Roche-Posay uses contains, since all water has to go through purification processes to be to used in cosmetic products.

That aside, this brand does have a number of standout products, including some good sunscreens and anti-aging treatments. Another positive: All of its skincare is packaged in containers that will keep beneficial products protected from light and air (no jar packaging here!). Unfortunately there are some missteps, namely that some otherwise-excellent products include potentially-irritating amounts of alcohol, fragrance, or other irritants. The line could also benefit from additional products that contain more state-of-the-art ingredients. Still, for a no-frills approach to serious skin care, there are some finds to be had!

For more information about La Roche-Posay, owned by L'Oreal, call (888) 577-5226 or visit www.laroche-posay.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.

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