StriVectin StriVectin-AR Advanced Retinol Concentrated Serum
1 fl. oz. for $119
Expert Rating
Community Rating (1)Write a Review
Expert Reviews
Community Reviews
Brand Overview
Expert Reviews

First, you don't need to spend nearly this much money to get a good retinol serum; however, if you choose to do so, this silky-textured serum isn't likely to disappoint, assuming you keep your expectations realistic, of course! Retinol can do a lot for skin, but no single skin-care ingredient can do it all.

We suspect StriVectin knows retinol isn't best when used solo, as they've combined it with several other anti-aging ingredients, including a form of cell-communicating ingredient niacinamide (myristyl nicotinate) plus fatty acids from olive oil, a peptide, some repairing ingredients, and a plant extracts that have anti-inflammatory action (though the ginger root may present a risk of irritation). More good news: All of these light- and air-sensitive ingredients are packaged so they remain stable during use!

This fragrance-free retinol serum is best for normal to oily or combination skin. Those with oily skin take note: The inclusion of mineral pigment mica lends a shiny finish that can make oil-prone areas look worse (so perhaps skip applying this during the day and reserve use for night, when it doesn't matter if skin looks shiny or not).

What about StriVectin's claims that this retinol product delivers all the potency of retinol without irritation? That's a loaded claim. Although this serum doesn't contain an over-the-top amount of retinol (its likely about 0.1%, which is moderate), the fact remains that some people cannot tolerate any amount of retinol, no matter how it's formulated. Retinol is an active ingredient and it's not a slam dunk for everyone—so it's good there are lots of other anti-aging ingredients to consider! Bottom line, though: There isn't any reason to buy this on the basis of it being non-irritating compared to other well=-formulated retinol serums. It may or may not irritate your skin, but it's clear StriVectin took steps to reduce this potential—if only they had included greater amounts of anti-aging ingredients for the money!

  • Fragrance-free formula.
  • Contains retinol plus other proven anti-aging ingredients.
  • Packaged to keep the retinol and other light/air-sensitive ingredients stable.
  • Silky texture.
  • Expensive given there are equally good to superior retinol serums for half the price.
  • The ginger root extract is anti-inflammatory but also poses a slight risk of irritation.
Last Updated:12.30.2014
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:Yes
Community Reviews

Advanced Retinol Concentrated Serum combines Retinol and patented NIA-114™ technology in an anti-aging multi-action treatment to deliver all the potency of Retinol with no irritation. Clinically proven to leave skin dramatically more refined and radiant, reducing the appearance of fine lines and smoothing texture for a reduction in the look of pores.


Aqua (Water, Eau), Cyclopentasiloxane, Myristyl Nicotinate, Glycerin, Dimethicone, Isopentyldiol, Polysorbate 20, Disodium EDTA, Olive Oil PEG-7 Esters, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Retinol, Retinyl Palmitate, Zingiber Officinale (Ginger) Root Extract, Palmitoyl Hexapeptide-12, Medicago Sativa (Alfalfa) Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Yeast Polysaccharides, Ceramide 2, Rosa Multiflora Fruit Extract, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Bisabolol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate, PEG-10 Rapeseed Sterol, Sorbitan Oleate, Tribehenin, Xanthan Gum, Acrylamide/Sodium Acryloyldimethyltaurate Copolymer, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Polysorbate 80, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Lactic Acid, VP/VA Copolymer, Sorbic Acid, Phenoxyethanol, Mica, CI 77891 (Titanium Dioxide).

Brand Overview

StriVectin put itself on the skincare map with its original StriVectin-SD cream, designed to treat stretch marks. The product took off and became the cornerstone of skincare collection whose focus is now on anti-aging. Its main selling point is its use of myristyl nicotinate (called NIA-114 in brand literature), which is related to and has many of the same properties as niacinamide.

Overall, the brand has some worthwhile products and for the most part they’re in packaging that will protect their ingredients from light and air. Unfortunately there are a number of options that include fragrance and other potential irritants, which are noted in our individual reviews.

For more information about StriVectin, visit www.strivectin.com.

About the Experts

The Beautypedia and Paula’s Choice Research teams have one mission: To help you find the best products for your skin, whether they’re from Paula’s Choice or another brand. By combining efforts, we’re able to share scientific research and remain committed to the highest standards based on our decades of experience objectively reviewing thousands upon thousands of skincare and makeup formularies in all price ranges.

Beautypedia cuts through the hype to bring you product insights and recommendations you won’t find anywhere else!