Friday, 17 May 2013

Avon Planet Spa Mediterranean Olive Oil Firming Chest & Neck Serum (review)

I must confess that I'm not using this product for its stated purpose. This is a chest and neck serum. The skin in these areas is thinner and can show signs of ageing earlier than the face, which is why some manufacturers, such as Avon, have created products specifically for them.

Avon Planet Spa Olive Oil Firming Serum

But they're not the only areas where thin skin can cause tell-tale sagging and wrinkling... have you looked at the back of your hands? Pinch the skin. Does it spring back and smooth out immediately? If you're under forty, I should hope so. Now compare to someone in their late teens. It's surprising how quickly the skin on our hands can deteriorate; it's an area of concern for me not because of my age but because the damage continual hand washing and alcoholic anti-bacterial gels has done. My hands dry out very quickly, the skin's lost its springiness and there's a crêpiness developing already!

So, when I bought this serum I hoped it will help reverse this damage, even though it's designed for other, similar areas of the body. The clear gel formula is very quickly absorbed; half a pump on the back of each hand can be completely rubbed in in about 15 seconds. This leaves them looking more even (that'll be the glycerin), the slightly ragged look I get around my knuckles fades a bit and the skin feels quite silken.

Anti-oxidant olive leaf extract should help tackle fine lines and olive oil should nourish. It's not especially moisturising (or oily!), but then I wouldn't expect a serum to be, you should use a cream on top after the serum's absorbed completely to get maximum benefits. If you do this religiously as I have tried to do, you should find your hands do start looking smoother all over and might help to delay the signs of ageing that betray so many celebrities – have you seen Sarah Jessica Parker's or Madonna's hands? If anyone needs targeted serums for their hands, I'm afraid it's them.

When I don't use this serum I notice my hands go back to their less than stellar previous appearance, which suggests to me the effects are not long-lasting and somewhat superficial. It's not enough to turn me off, though, especially as it costs just £5 for 50 ml – which has lasted quite a while. The ingredients, however, are pretty poor: propylene glycol, parabens and artificial fragrance all feature, but it does contain real olive oil and leaf extracts.

Planet Spa is Avon's semi-premium spa-like range, so it's a pleasure to use and a definite notch up in quality over their mainstream products. By all means give this serum a shot, but I'm now intrigued enough to start looking elsewhere for products specifically designed for anti-ageing the hands. Until I find something better, take comfort in the fact Avon's customers like this as much as I do: British customers give it 4.3/5.0 while American customers rate it 4.9/5.0.

Instantly firms and smooths skin
Effects are short-term
Easy to use pump-action container
Not especially nourishing
Good value for money


Brand: Avon

Size: 50 ml
Price: £5.00 (£10.00/100 ml)

Manufactured: Poland

Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Propylene Glycol, Glycolic Acid, Glycerin, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Polysorbate-20, Ammonium Hydroxide, Imidazolidinyl Urea, Panthenol, Methylparaben, Parfum, Olea Europaea Extract, Olea Europaea Oil, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Extract

Alternative: Bio-Oil

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