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Drunk Elephant

T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Night Serum

1.00 fl. oz. for $ 90.00
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Brand Overview

Drunk Elephant’s T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Night Serum’s switched up its formula a tiny bit since we originally checked it out – but fans of this product need not worry, as it still holds up as a great exfoliant for all skin types.

In fact, the only significant change here is that sodium hydroxide (also known as lye, a pH stabilizer that in large amounts can cause sensitization) is no longer present. All of the great ingredients are still here – and that means very good things for your skin.

This lightweight, fragrance-free gel absorbs quickly, and works well for all skin types. The stars of the show here are the alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) glycolic, lactic, and tartaric acids, (citric acid is listed in the claims as one of the exfoliating acids, though it’s much more effective in higher concentrations than what’s present here) which are effective for improving the look and feel of skin, especially when formulated in a product with a pH between 3-4, as this one is at 3.7.

Backing up the AHAs is a good amount of salicylic acid (beta hydroxy acid, or BHA), which helps unclog pores and smooth skin texture. There’s also a nice mix of green tea, horse chestnut, cactus,, and raspberry extracts. For good measure, Drunk Elephant also included skin-repairing sodium hyaluronate and marula oil.

If you’re already a fan of this exfoliant – or are looking to try it out for the first time – rest assured it remains one of our favorites!

Pros:
  • Includes an efficacious amount of alpha hydroxy acids.
  • Contains a good amount of pore-refining salicylic acid.
  • Formulated at a pH to ensure exfoliation can occur.
  • Includes several antioxidants, alongside moisturizing ingredients.
  • Packaged to protect its light- and air-sensitive ingredients.
  • Fragrance free.
Cons:
  • None.
Jar Packaging: No
Tested on animals: No

This high-tech gel resurfaces dull skin, gently lifting dead skin cells away by dissolving the glue that holds them to the surface. Formulated with a dream team AHA/BHA blend of glycolic, lactic, tartaric, citric and salicylic acids, and blended with raspberry extract, T.L.C. Framboos™ sinks in easily and delivers an effective level of chemical exfoliation without the harsh side effects like dryness or sensitization. Fine lines, wrinkles and discoloration, along with excess oiliness and the appearance of pores, will appear dramatically diminished. Horse chestnut, bearberry and white tea help to calm and soothe while improving the appearance of broken capillaries. Go from a drab complexion to an absolutely luminous one, practically overnight.

Water/Aqua/Eau, Glycolic Acid, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Sodium Hydroxide, Salicylic Acid, Lactic Acid, Citric Acid, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Juice Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Opuntia Ficus-Indica Extract, Aesculus Hippocastanum (Horse Chestnut) Seed Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Rubus Idaeus (Raspberry) Fruit Extract, Saccharomyces Cerevisiae Extract, Buddleja Davidii Meristem Cell Culture, Sclerocarya Birrea Seed Oil, Sodium Hyaluronate Crosspolymer, Allantoin, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Galactoarabinan, Propanediol, Disodium EDTA, Xanthan Gum, Hexylene Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium Nitrate, Potassium Sorbate, Pentylene Glycol, Sodium Benzoate.

Drunk Elephant At-A-Glance

Drunk Elephant, based out of Los Angeles, California, was started in 2012 by former skincare executive Tiffany Masterson. As their website describes, Masterson developed the brand out of a desire to create natural-themed formulas that were truly effective. Beyond effectiveness, Masterson wanted to leave out what wasnt effective  - primarily fragrance. We concur, because fragrance isn't skincare.

We were pleasantly surprised by this stance, as in our experience, the inclusion of an abundance of fragrance is where many natural-themed brands seem to go wrong, along with using too few beneficial ingredients or formulas. Fragrance, whether from essential oils or synthetic perfumes, is never helpful for skin because over the long term, it can cause damage that holds any skin type back from being its healthy best.

As for the brands unconventional name, Drunk Elephant is in reference to anecdotes that African wildlife, including elephants, partake on the fallen, fermented fruit of the marula tree, an indulgence that leads to intoxication.

Drunk Elephant avoids using ingredients like non-mineral sunscreen actives, silicones, and parabens, even though countless studies have indicated these ingredients are safe (Journal of the Academy of Dermatology, 2013 and Skin Therapy Letters, 2013). Regardless, were just happy that the line has made it a focal point to use what research has been shown improves skin concerns like sun damage, breakouts and signs of aging, and leave out everything else. They're also using some novel yet potentially exciting ingredients in many of their formulas.

Drunk Elephant line is a small line, but tends to make each product count, or at least puts an unconventional twist on the norm. Overall, we came away impressed with most of its products and (usually) smart packaging.

Many of the formulas include the ingredient marula oil, which is an ingredient the brand favors due to the fact it contains an array of beneficial fatty acids, calming agents, and antioxidants (Journal of Food Lipids, 2004 and Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 2014). It's a good ingredient, but there are many excellent non-fragrant plant oils, including coconut, jojoba, sunflower, and more, of which have similar benefits, meaning marula oil isn't the best out there, just one good oil among many.

Though the price tags are absolutely on the higher end, if you decide to to splurge on some key items, this is a good line to do so!

For more information, visit the brand at www.drunkelephant.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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