review kiehl's midnight recovery concentrate

Did you know your skin never sleeps?

It spends the night repairing itself from all the damage it sustained during the day.

Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate claims to help this process. Kiehl’s says it “works with the skin’s natural nocturnal activity to dramatically restore skin”.

If you don’t know what that means, it’s marketing lingo for “we want people to believe this serum helps skin repair itself at night but we can’t say that because it isn’t true.”

In other words, keep the claim vague enough so it means everything and nothing and you won’t get in trouble with the law. How can you prove this stuff doesn’t do what it claims when you don’t even know what it claims?

But, it’s not all bad. Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate does have a few good things going for it. But they come at a cost…

What’s In Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate?


Squalane is one of the very few oils that doesn’t make fungal acne worse. It’s safe literally for everyone.

Squalane is a natural component of your skin. That means your skin recognizes it and absorbs it quickly. It doesn’t leave a super greasy residue behind as other oils do.

Plus, it’s super moisturizing. It creates a barrier on the skin that slows down water loss, keeping it hydrated and soft for longer. No wonder Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate is so moisturizing.

Related: How To Treat Fungal Acne


I’m not surprised Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate choose evening primrose oil. It’s a multitasker:

Related: Is Evening Primrose Oil The Best Oil For Sensitive Skin?


If you’re a regular here, you know that rosehip oil is my fave natural oil. It’s derived from the hip (the radish-like ball the rose leaves behind after it blossoms) of roses and can fix any skincare woe:

Another good choice, Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate!

Related: Why Rosehip Oil Is My Go-To Oil For Every Skin Woe


So far, we talked about all the good things about Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate. It’s super moisturising and can help you fight wrinkles BUT… way too many irritants are lurking in it.

Rosemary, coriander and lavender oils all have fragrant components that can irritate skin, especially sensitive skin.  🙁

Related: 7 Natural Ingredients That Can Irritate Your Skin


Lightweight, fast-sinking oil.


Strong lavender scent.

How To Use It

You can use it alone or mix it with your moisturiser.

If alone, it’s the last step of your skincare routine. Warm a couple of drops between your hands and gently massage them into your skin.

Performance & Personal Opinion

Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate is super moisturising. That alone makes my skin soft and glowy and plumps it up so that my fine lines look smaller. 

No wonder so many people are fans. But let’s face it, any oil or moisturiser does that. It’s part of the job description. I’m pleased it does what it says on the tin, but I want something extra.

Unfortunately, the only extra you’re getting here is the potential for irritation. Lavender & co can easily trigger a bad reaction in sensitive skin. Stay away.

I also don’t recommend it to oily skin. Although the serum sinks in quickly and doesn’t cause any problems on my dry winter skin, it’s a bit too oily for oily skin. And it may give you a breakout.

Oils always have the potential to clog pores and your skin’s already prone to them. Do your skin a favour and stick to oil-free moisturisers instead.

Related: How To Care For Oily Skin

Kiehl’s midnight recovery concentrate review

Who Is This For?

Dry, non-sensitive skin.

Who Is This Not For?

  • Acne-prone skin
  • Oily skin
  • Sensitive skin


Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate comes in a sleek blue bottle with a drop applicator. It’s both hygienic and practical.

Does Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate Live Up To Its Claims?

One night. A few drops. Younger-looking skin by morning. True. Its moisturises skin and anything that does that makes skin look temporarily younger.
Midnight Recovery Concentrate replenishes skin as you sleep, supplementing its natural overnight recovery process, to reveal a rested and restored appearance by morning.  This claim is quite vague. Replenishes skin in what way? Supplementing its natural recovery process how? They won’t say because all the oil does is moisturise skin.

Price & Availability

Available at: $50.00/£37.00 at Feel Unique, Sephora, and Ulta

Do You Need It?

If you have sensitive skin, stay away. Too many irritants here. Resistant skin? It’s unlikely this’ll bother your skin. But why risk it when there are gentler alternatives out there?


Dupes & Alternatives

Have you tried Kielh’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate? Share your experience in the comments below.


Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Dicaprylyl Carbonate, Squalane, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil, Evening Primrose Oil, Jojoba Seed Oil, Coriander Seed Oil, Tocopherol, Lavender Oil, Pelargonium Graveolens Flower Oil, Linalool, Rosemary Leaf Oil, Citronellol, Geraniol, Lavandula Hybrida Oil, Cucumber Fruit Extract, Turmeric Root Extract, Limonene, Citral, Sclareolide, Rose Flower Oil, Jasmine Extract, Sunflower Seed Oil