Did you know that Lancome and L’Oreal Paris are owned by the same company? That’s good news for us.
It means that, whenever Lancome releases a “revolutionary” skincare product with a new “miraculous” ingredient, it is only a matter of time before L’Oreal follows suit. The multinational doubles its profits, and we get the chance to try what the fuss is about without breaking the bank.
An example. L’Oreal Paris Youth Code Serum Intense Daily Treatment is a dupe for Lancome Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Concentrate. They use the same actives, have similar names, and make similar claims (skin regeneration).
But how well do they really work? And which one is better? Let’s investigate:
Bifida Ferment Lysate
Both the Lancome and L’Oreal serums contain a very high amount of bifida ferment lysate. According to them, bifida ferment lysate can repair DNA, improve skin’s barrier function and hydration, and help maintain and support skin’s natural microflora. The catch? There’s no independent research supporting these claims yet. We just have to take Lancome’s and L’Oreal’s words for it. Mmm…
Alcohol Denat is a very controversial ingredient in skincare. Some experts, like Paula Begoun, claim it is always drying and irritating and a cause of free radicals. Others, like Nicki Zevola of Future Derm, believe that in well-formulated products, full of antioxidants and soothing agents, it can enhance the penetration of active ingredients without causing any harm to the skin.
It doesn’t really matter which side you are on (I still prefer to avoid it when possible). Both serums simply don’t contain enough beneficial ingredients able to counteract the potential harmful side effects of alcohol. If you have dry and sensitive skin especially, you’ll do well to stay away from both.
A lot of anti-ageing serums are loaded with dimethicone. That’s because it can make fine lines and wrinkles look smaller by filling them in. But the results are only temporary. Once you remove the serums, your wrinkles are still there, still as deep as before.
On the plus side, dimethicone doesn’t suffocate skin, as often claimed. Silicones like dimethicone have a particular molecular structure made of large molecules with wider spaces between each one of them. This allows them to create a barrier that slows down water loss without completely occluding skin.
Glycerin and Sodium Hyaluronate
Both serums are hydrating. They contain Glycerin and Sodium Hyaluronate, two humectants that draw water from the environment into the skin. Sodium Hyaluronate is particularly effective because it can bind 1000 times its weight in water, and works well both in high and low humidity conditions!
Ascorbyl Glucoside vs Peptides
Both formulas are low on real anti-ageing ingredients that can fight premature wrinkles. Lancome Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Concentrate uses acorbyl glucoside, a form of vitamin C with powerful antioxidant properties that can stimulate collagen production and reduce hyperpigmentation.
L’Oreal Paris Youth Code Serum Intense Daily Treatment instead contains two peptides, palmitoyl oligopeptide, and palmitoyl tetrapepide-7. The first is said to stimulate collagen production, while the latter to reduce inflammation.
So, which of the two is better, ascorbyl glucoside or peptides? It’s hard to tell. Ascorbyl glucoside is one of the less studied forms of vitamin C and, even if it works well, there is only so much one antioxidant alone can do. Our skin needs a lot of them.
As for peptides, we still don’t know how well they work. Their molecules are too big to penetrate skin, but it’s been suggested they could still be effective when left on the surface. How? By signalling to skin receptors present there how a cell should behave.
What About The Rest Of The Formulas?
The first, most important, ingredients of Lancome Advanced Genefique Youth Activating Concentrate Serum and L’Oreal Paris Youth Code Serum Intense Daily Treatment are identical. So, they do pretty much the same thing.
They can temporarily reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and hydrate skin, but the high amount of alcohol could, potentially, dry it out and even irritate it.
The main difference? The choice of anti-ageing ingredients. One antioxidant for the former and two peptides for the latter. I personally prefer antioxidants because there is a lot more research supporting their benefits, but you need to use more than one of them to see some significant results.
So, regardless of which anti-ageing approach you prefer, both serums remain average.
Lancome Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Concentrate Ingredients
Water, Bifida Ferment Lysate, Glycerin, Alcohol Denatured, 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, Parfum/Fragrance.
L’Oreal Paris Youth Code Serum Intense Daily Treatment Ingredients
Water, Bifida Ferment Lysate, Glycerin, Alcohol Denatured, Dimethicone, Hydroxyethylpiperazine Ethane Sulfonic Acid, PEG-20 Methyl Glucose Sesquistearate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Salicyloyl Phytosphingosine, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Adenosine, Ammonium Polyacryldimethyltauramide, Disodium EDTA, Caprylyl Glycol, Citric Acid, Xanthan Gum, N-Hydroxysuccinimide, Chrysin, Octyldodecanol, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol, Limonene, Fragrance
Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Concentrate is available in a 1oz bottle. It costs $84.00 and can be purchased at Sephora. L’Oreal Paris Youth Code Serum Intense Daily Treatment, housed in a 1oz tube, is priced at a much more reasonable $19.99. It can be purchased at Amazon.
The Bottom Line
L’Oreal Paris Youth Code Serum Intense Daily Treatment is a good dupe for Lancome Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Concentrate. They share the same benefits and side effects.
So, which one should you choose? I prefer the Lancome serum because it contains a form of vitamin C (although that isn’t enough to justify its outrageous high price tag).
The L’Oreal serum is best for those who want to try peptides without breaking the bank. If you do, follow it up with an antioxidant-rich moisturizer that can counteract the drying effects of alcohol and help fight premature ageing.
Have you tried these serums? Which one do you prefer?