Save Vs Splurge: A Closer Look At Zelens Skincare

by Gio

zelens skincare

My skincare routine has been taken over by Zelens lately. After falling in love with their Vitamin C serum and really digging their algae cream (it’s one of the few algae creams really worth trying, imo), I thought I’d explore the rest of the line, too. Because, why not?
zelens z detox clarifying foaming cleanser

Z Detox Clarifying Foaming Cleanser

Z Detox Clarifying Foaming Cleanser is the coolest foaming cleanser I’ve ever come across.

You know how you need to mix the cleanser with water to make it foam? Not this. Z Detox comes out of the bottle in a cloud of foam. It’s the action of the bottle dispenser that turns it into a lather (or so I’m told).

In case you’re wondering, yep, it works just as well as any other foaming cleanser. It easily removes dirt, grime and most makeup from the skin without leaving it feeling tight and dry.

Its secret is the combination of Sodium Lauroyl Methyl Isethionate and Cocamidopropyl Betaine, two gentle surfactants (ingredients that help water mix with oil and dirt so they can be rinsed away) derived from coconut.

Both are way gentler than more common surfactants like Sodium Lauryl Sulfate. That means that it takes them a bit more effort to get all the makeup off your face but, when they’re done, there’s no hint of dryness anywhere.

I don’t use it to remove my makeup, though. I prefer to use it it in the morning, when there’s not much to remove in the first place, and as the second step of double cleansing at night. It always leaves my skin clean, bright and soft.
zelens transformer instant renewal mask

Transformer Instant Renewal Mask Ingredients

Dr Lens, founder of Zelens, HATES Glycolic Acid. I don’t. I’m a HUGE fan. But, I must admit he has a point. GA is awesome at exfoliating skin and pumping up collagen production, but it can  be irritating (it’s why I NEVER recommend it to sensitive skin).

So, what does he uses instead? Lactobionic Acid. LA belongs to the Polyhydroxy Acids (PHAs) family, a branch of the Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) family. So, yep, it’s related to GA (if you’re behind on the gossip, GA is a AHAs – do you have a headache, yet?).

Alphabet aside, science has shown that 6% Lactobionic Acid gets rid of dead skin cells as well as GA, but without irritating skin. Plus, just like GA, Lactobionic Acid hydrates skin, leaving it softer and smoother.

The best thing about it? It can be used by everyone. It’s compatible with clinically sensitive skin, including rosacea and atopic dermatitis, as well as African American, Caucasian, and Hispanic/Asian skin. 

Lactobionic Acid is the key ingredient in the Transformer Instant Renewal Mask, a thick mask with a slightly sticky consistency. I slather a generous amount on my skin and leave it on for 15 minutes.

When I rinse it off, my skin looks smoother and brighter than before and is much softer to the touch, too. If you’re looking for an alternative to GA, you’ll like this one. 🙂
zelens triple action advanced eye cream

Triple-Action Advanced Eye Cream

Triple-Action Advanced Eye Cream is my least fave product from the line. But, I may be biased. I’m not a fan of eye creams in general. I just use my face cream all over and call it a day (or night).

This cream has a lightweight, silky cream-gel texture that glides onto the skin smoothly and sinks in immediately. As soon as I apply it, I notice the fine lines around my eyes look a little smaller and the whole area is smoother.

That’s the magic of silicones. They feel in fine lines and wrinkles, reducing their appearance. Silicones also give skin that velvety soft feel I adore. I honestly can’t stop touching my skin when I have them on. lol

But, the effects of silicones are only temporary. Once you wash the cream off, your wrinkles are still there, as big as before. Nothing wrong with that, we all need a quick fix most days. But, for £75.00, we do expect more than this ladies, right?

Enter peptides. Triple Action Advanced Cream contains four:

The problem with peptides? Most of these studies were done by the manufacturers. They’re promising, but until we have independent research to back them up, I wouldn’t put my faith wholly on peptides.

I can tell you what the cream did for me, though:

  1. Temporarily reduced the appearance of my fine lines
  2. Moisturized my skin and made it softer
  3. Helped depuff my eyes a little
  4. Absolutely nothing for dark circles

I think I’ll stick to my facial moisturizer for now.
zelens z 22 absolute facial oil

Z-22 Absolute Face Oil

After the “worst” comes the best. This is my fave product. It’s a silky oil that deeply moisturizes skin without leaving a greasy residue behind (mind you, even my t-zone isn’t that oily).

The main oils here are:

Unfortunately, it’s also loaded with citrus oils and lavender, which could irritate sensitive skin. Mine isn’t, so I can safely use it without side effects.

Anyways, oils work because they create a barrier on the skin that slows down water loss. Moisture is now forced to remain into the skin, plumping it up and hydrating it from within.

I use it at night as the last step of my skincare routine to lock in all my serums. When I wake up in the morning, my skin is softer and smoother and has a luminous glow. 

I think I’ll keep what’s left for winter. Oils are fine in summer but it’s in winter, when skin needs extra protection from the cold, that they truly shine.
zelens lip balm

The Balm

Remember when I was complaining Zelens Lip Treatment Oil lasting less than a couple of hours on my lips? I was using it as lip and turns out it’s not a lip balm. Ahem. The Balm is the lip balm in the range.

The Balm uses a mixture of rice bran oil, cocoa butter and shea butter to moisturize your lips. Here’s how it works: these oils and butters form a shield on the skin that keeps moisture in and germs and irritants out.

Yet, it’s not heavy or waxy at all. Its texture feels more like a lightweight cream with a luminous finish to make your pout shine. It keeps my skin soft and kissable for hours – of course, I need to reapply it every now and then. But, not as often as I do the treatment.

Although… if your lips are on the dry and flaky side, I say use them both together. That’ll nurse them back to kissable health that much faster.

The only thing I dislike about it? The packaging. I believe that jar packaging is a pain for lip balm. I need the convenience to apply it in a swipe whenever I want – WITHOUT getting my finger dirty.

Dr Lens sees it differently. He looks at the popularity of By Terry Baume De Rose and thinks the jar packaging is part of its charm.

Maybe. Maybe lots of women like lip balms packaged in jars. I don’t even look at them twice. Ok, I try the odd one when a PR or friend gives it to me and yes, sometimes they turn out to be awesome. But, I would never buy one myself. They’re just not that convenient.

The Bottom Line

Skip the eye cream, get the facial oil. Unless your skin is sensitive. If it is, get your hands on the mask instead. If you can afford the splurge, the rest of the line is a very nice to have, too.

Have you tried Zelens Skincare? If so, what are your fave products? Leave a comment and let me know.

Price & Availability: Z Detox Clarifying Foaming Cleanser, £48.00; Transformer Instant Renewal Mask, £95.00; Triple-Action Advanced Eye Cream, £75.00; Z-22 Absolute Facial Oil, £65.00; The Balm, £35.00 at Cult Beauty and Net-A-Porter


Z Detox Clarifying Foaming Cleanser Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Sodium Lauroyl Methyl Isethionate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Lactobacillus/Pumpkin Fruit Ferment Filtrate, Perilla Frutescens Leaf Extract, Tartaric Acid, Citric Acid, Citrus Limon (Lemon) Fruit Extract, Hydrolyzed Grape Fruit, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Hydrolyzed Wheat Bran, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Glycerin, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Phenoxyethanol, PPG-26-Buteth-26, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium Dehydroacetate, Parfum (Fragrance).

Transformer Instant Renewal Mask Ingredients: Water(Aqua), Lactobionic Acid, Propylene Glycol, Glycerin, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/ VP Copolymer, Cyclopentasiloxane, Polysilicone-11, Sodium Lactate, Dimethicone, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Phenoxyethanol, Mannitol, Laminaria Digitata Extract, Yeast Extract, Acrylates Copolymer, Behenyl Alcohol, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Magnesium Aspartate, Mica, Fragrance (Parfum), Sodium Hyaluronate, Disodium Adenosine Triphosphate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Disodium EDTA, Stearyl Alcohol, Alaria Esculenta Extract, Protease, Subtilisin, Glycogen, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Benzyl Alcohol, Hydrolyzed Pearl, Hydrolyzed Sesame Protein PG-Propyl Methylsilanediol, VP/Polycarbamyl Polyglycol Ester, Silanetriol, Dehydroacetic Acid, Sodium Benzoate, CI 77891 (Titanium Dioxide)

Triple-Action Advanced Eye Cream Ingredients: Water (Aqua), Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Polysilicone-11, Bifida Ferment Lysate, Pentylene Glycol, SinorhizobiumMeliloti Ferment Filtrate, Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Carbomer, Tromethamine, Phenoxyethanol, Acrylates Copolymer, Isohexadecane, Ammonium PolyacryloyldimethylTaurate, Chlorphenesin, Disodium EDTA, Tocopheryl Acetate, Polysorbate 80, Polysorbate 20, Fragrance (Parfum), Caffeine, O-Cymen-5-Ol, Steareth-20, Sodium Dehydroacetate, CetylHydroxyethylcellulose, Lecithin, Caprylyl Glycol, PVP/PolycarbamylPolyglycol Ester, Sodium Benzoate, Hydrolysed Sesam Protein PG-Propyl Methylsilanediol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Potassium Sorbate, Acetyl Tetrapeptide-5, Alchemilla Vulgaris Extract, Betula Alba Leaf Extract, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, ChamomillaRecutita (Matricaria) Flower/Leaf Extract, ChlorhexidineDigluconate, Equisetum Arvense Extract, N-Hydroxysuccinimide, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Leaf Extract, Trisodium EDTA, Acetyl Octapeptide-3, Tocopherol, Citric Acid, Sodium Citrate, Soluble Collagen, Chrysin, PalmitoylOligopeptide, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7

Z-22 Absolute Face Oil Ingredients: Perilla Frutescens Seed Oil, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Germ/Bran Oil, Camellia Oleifera Seed Oil, Squalane, Cetearyl Ethylhexanoate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Isopropyl Myristate, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia Peel Oil, Parfum (Fragrance), Tocopherol, Citrus Limon Peel Oil, Citrus Aurantium Leaf Oil, Litsea Cubeba Fruit Oil, Citrus Aurantium Peel Oil Distilled, Cymbopogon Citratus Leaf Oil, Elettaria Cardomomum Seed Oil, Lavandula Angustifolia Herb Oil, Rosmarinus Officinalis Leaf Oil, Pinus Pinaster Twig Leaf Oil, Pelargonium Graveolens Leaf Oil, Rosa Centifolia Flower Oil, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Citrus Aurantium Peel Oil Expressed, Citrus Aurantium Amara Flower Extract, Jasminum Officinale Flower Oil, Cistus Ladaniferus Leaf Oil, Ocimum Basilcum Herb Oil, Limonene, Linalool, Citral, Geraniol, Citronellol.

The Balm Ingredients: Polybutene, Octyldodecyl Stearoyl Stearate, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Oil, Cera Alba (Beeswax), Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Octyldodecanol, Glyceryl Behenate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Retinyl Palmitate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Perilla Frutescens Leaf Extract, Hydrogenated Coco-Glycerides, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Extract, Lecithin, Caprylyl Glycol, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Arachidyl Propionate, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, CI 77891 (Titanium Dioxide), Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane, Aroma (Flavor), BHT, Butylene Glycol, Ethyl Oleate, Ethyl Linolenate, Ethyl Linoleate, Phenoxyethanol, Tocopherol, Hexylene Glycol.

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