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Are Expensive Beauty Products Always Better?

Are Expensive Beauty Products Always Better?

When it comes to cosmetics, expensive doesn’t always mean better. The truth is that there are good and bad products in all price categories. It’s all about the formulation not price. It’s quite interesting to find out which companies really own your favourite brands. It can also help you save money. For example,


  1. Lancome
  2. YSL Beauty
  3. Body Shop
  4. Giorgio Armani Beauty
  5. Kiehls
  6. Urban Decay
  7. Garnier
  8. Maybelline
  9. NYX

Estee Lauder:

  1. Bobbi Brown
  2. Clinique
  3. GlamGlow
  4. Jo Malone
  5. Crème De La Mer
  6. MAC
  7. Smash Box
  8. Tom Ford Beauty

There are other global cosmetic companies that have so many cosmetics brands under their wings like Coty, Unilever, and Procter & Gamble etc. If you look at the ingredients list on products made by the same company, you’ll find that some cheaper brands use the same ingredients as the more expensive ones. Let’s have a look at “Lancôme Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Serum” and “L’oreal Youth Code Serum Intense”. It is quite common for L’Oreal and Lancôme to offer similar products whose only significant differences are price (L’Oreal owns Lancôme).

Lancôme Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Serum 1.0 Oz/30ml – $78

“A powerful youth activating serum that reveals youthful radiance and smoother skin in just 7 days. Drop by drop, this potent serum boosts youthful radiance, restoring smoother, more radiant skin you can see and feel in just 7 days”

Ingredients: Water, Bifida Ferment Lysate, Glycerin, Alcohol Denat., Dimethicone, Hydroxyethylpiperazine Ethane Sulfonic Acid, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Sodium Hyaluronate, Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol, Adenosine, Faex Extract/Yeast Extract/Extrait De Levure, Peg-20 Methyl Glucose Sesquistearate, Peg-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Salicyloyl Phytosphingosine, Ammonium Polyacryldimethyltauramide/Ammonium Polyacryloyldimethyl Taurate, Limonene, Xanthan Gum, Caprylyl Glycol, Disodium Edta, Octyldodecanol, Citronellol, Fragrance.

L’Oreal Youth Code Serum Intense 1.0 Oz/30ml – $25

“Restore fresh glow. Boost Hydration. Rapidly diminish first lines…..Skin looks rested, smoother and youthfully luminous”

Ingredients: Water, Bifida Ferment Lysate, Glycerin, Alcohol Denat, Dimethicone, Hydroxyethylpiperazine Ethane Sulfonic Acid, PEG-20 Methyl Glucose Sesquistearate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Salicyloyl Phytosphingosine, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Adenosine, Ammonium Polyacryldimethyltauramide / Ammonium Polyacryloyldimethyl Taurate, Disodium Edta, Caprylyl Glycol, Citric Acid, Xanthan Gum, N-Hydroxysuccinimide, Chrysin, Octyldodecanol, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol, Limonene, Fragrance

Both serums have these ingredients in common:

Water, Bifida Ferment Lysate, Glycerin, Alcohol Denat., Dimethicone, Hydroxyethylpiperazine Ethane Sulfonic Acid, Sodium Hyaluronate, PEG-20 Methyl Glucose Sesquistearate, Adenosine, Ammonium Polyacryloyldimethyl Taurate, Limonene, Xanthan Gum, Caprylyl Glycol, Sodium Benzoate, Disodium Edta, Citric Acid, Octyldodecanol, Fragrance.

The most important ingredients in both serums are exactly the same. So both serums will do pretty much the same thing. The important ingredients are: Bifida Ferment Lysate, Glycerin, Sodium Hyaluronate and Dimethicone. The rest of the formula is mostly preservatives, stabilizers, and fragrance.

Lets talk about the ingredients.

Bifida Ferment Lysate

It is a type of gram-positive bacteria found in the digestive system. According to L’Oreal, it can repair DNA, improve the skin’s barrier function and hydration but there is no research to prove that it has any anti-aging or gene-stimulating effect when applied on the skin.

Glycerin & Sodium Hyaluronate

They are both humectants. Humectants draw water from the environment into the skin to keep it hydrated.


This is a silicone emollient, which can make fine lines, and wrinkles look smaller by filling them in. These results are only temporary, once the serum comes off, the wrinkles will still be there. Most anti-aging serums have dimethicone in them.

In Conclusion

Lancome Genifique costs three times as much as L’Oreal Youth Code but they will do exactly the same thing. Both serums can temporarily reduce the appearance of fine lines/wrinkles but they will not eliminate them. It’s quite odd that they have alcohol in both serums at high percentages, as alcohol is known to be drying, irritating and cause free-radical damage. If you have dry and sensitive skin, I wont advice you to use any of these products.

Photo Credit: Beauty Tip Smart, Pinterest, Lancome, L’Oreal


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