RESIST C15 Super Booster Paula's Choice

Hi Randy and Peter,

I am considering to buy this Vitamin C serum according to the podcast: What do you think of these ingredients?

Water, Ascorbic Acid (vitamin C/antioxidant), Ethoxydiglycol (hydration), PPG-26 Buteth-26 (texture-enhancing), PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil (texture-enhancing), Tocopherol (vitamin E/antioxidant), Ferulic Acid (antioxidant), Sodium Hyaluronate (hydration/skin replenishing), Acetyl Octapeptide-3 (skin-restoring), Glycerin (hydration/skin replenishing), Panthenol (skin replenishing), Sodium Metabisulfite (stabilizer/antioxidant), Triethanolamine (pH adjuster), Phenoxyethanol (preservative).


  • @Tiffany60

    I think the ingredients are very good. But I don't believe the ascorbic acid will stay stable in that packaging, ascorbic acid is extremely unstable and needs to be packaged airless. Even before any color change a considerable amount of ascorbic acid will have been oxidized. But maybe Randy has some studies proving no oxidation occurs. I'm also curious about other antioxidants, like Green Tea Extract, Resveratrol or Superoxide Dismutase, Paula's Choice uses these kind of actives in many products, but none of them are packaged airless.

  • edited November 2016
    According to Paula's Choice, the bottle is UV protected and the top of the bottle is as airless as possible. The dropper has to be "pushed in" every time, so that the product inside is additionally protected. There are some great Youtube videos showing other consumers using the bottle. It's as user friendly as you're going to get while keeping the product as stable as possible. 
  • edited November 2016
    Well the bottle has UV-protecting coating, but it is not airless. Otherwise the product would have been vacuum in the end. Although the opening is smaller than a jar, still if you take the dropper out air will flow in, just like jar packaging.

    But a low pH value, Ferulic Acid and Sodium Metabisulfite can stabilize ascorbic acid to some extend. Paula's Choice claims that all products are stable until the expiry date, maybe it's true, but all companies claim to formulate stable products while many of them are not stable. It's also something psychological, people want to apply something to their face to stop aging, and they heard and read vitamin C is good, Paula's Choice claims its good, so they think it should make their skin at least a bit better. While in reality it could do more harm than good, if it's oxidized. An ingredient like EGCG or retinol can only be formulated in airless packaging, while Paula uses tubes and normal bottles for some formulations.

    Personally I think this dropper might be the best way to package an ascorbic acid solution, because it's difficult to use when it's packaged in a airless pump bottle, but it really is not the most ideal way because after using the product for some time it is very likely you will be applying significant amounts of oxidized ascorbic acid to your skin. In the scientific studies people used fresh batches of ascorbic acid, not a product in an open bottle that's two months old. It's not without a reason derivatives like ascorbyl tetraisopalmitate or  magnesium ascorbyl phosphate are created. They penetrate the skin more easily, are stable, can be formulated at a more skin friendly pH-value, also less oxidation of not absorbed ascorbic acid on the skin itself occurs. Also sudden high doses of Ascorbic Acid are toxic to cells, while other derivatives release it more slowly, for ascorbyl tetraisopalmitate still 75-85% is successfully converted to ascorbic acid. For a scientific study, fresh ascorbic acid is really nice, but for day to day use, I really think for us consumers a stable vitamin C derivative is the thing you should be looking for. Or an anhydrous ascorbic acid formula.
  • edited November 2016

    Agree with @Peter on this. Not an airless bottle. Does minimise air by maybe 10% compared to a jar... the fact is airless bottle have chamber that reduces in size, so at any point of time, the airless bottle chamber is compact with only the product, little air or no air in the bottle. This makes a LARGE difference to product oxidation! 

    I have used a very photosensitive ingredient that came in a jar. (this happened several times to me) I will close the original jar and decant a small portion out. The original jar is SEALED Shut, i don't open it again until i use up the airless bottle i decanted it into. And by the time i have used up the airless bottle, when i go back to the original jar, the product has oxidised. The product's effectiveness has diminished when i go back to the original jar. Once, i had to throw out the product. Once you open it, the PAO commences. Any air at all, no matter how small or how little the opening of the container.... WILL OXIDISE your precious product. Obviously, if the product opening is bigger, oxidation will be faster (in a day) but given a space of 1 month. Any non airless container WILL oxidise just as badly.

    Minimum air = minimum oxidation = maximum benefits from your products.

    You know, the best product ingredients eg antioxidants are ironically (maybe not so ironic) the most volatile to oxidation. Like HIGH RISK HIGH REWARDs i think. The danger of applying oxidised product is actually a reverse of applying antioxidants... better to save the effort and not do anything, don't put the product on!

    2nd what @Peter says about LAA and the Vitamin C derivatives. I rather use derivatives than LAA in anhyrdous or in water (fear of oxidation). The only exception is when i make my Vitamin C serums FRESH! Even then, without proper antioxidants eg ferulic acid (i need to buy) the LAA can also oxidise on the face (not in the bottle). After testing the ordinary LAA in anhydrous. I do not like it. Absorption is crap compared to LAA in water. I rather use Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate or Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate or Ascorbyl Glucoside. Will test the 2 other Vitamin C derivatives and decide which is best. I will DIY my own Vitamin C derivative in the future.

    Peter said:"Personally I think this dropper might be the best way to package an ascorbic acid solution, because it's difficult to use when it's packaged in a airless pump bottle, "

    i disagree i have decanted very liquidy viscuous products. No issue. You just need the RIGHT airless bottle.

  • edited November 2016
    In my experience such liquid formulas of vitamin C leak very quickly in airless pump bottles, and with some also when using it. So indeed maybe you need very special airless pumps. Also many people like the sciency/laboratory look of such dropper bottles, and it's much cheaper to produce. I think that's the reason why companies use these dropper bottles, which are understandable reasons. And if the products stay stable for the 2 or 3 months you are using them it wouldn't be a problem either, although I think oxidation will definitely occur with some ingredients.
  • @Peter no issues. i have a bottle containing very liquid low viscosity vitamin C right now. not a special one. it's cheap lol.

    dropper bottles are much cheaper!

    the general public don't know about packaging so much tbh... even in the forums where the beauty geeks gather... really not much at all!

    At the end of the day, companies (esp big ones) are slow to change. Airless bottles are gaining in popularity tho. i see them in more products now... even inexpensive products! I just bought my 3rd bottle of the NOW Solutions dark spot serum... it comes in airless bottle. one of the reasons i like it is also the packaging.. (and effects/ingredients)
  • edited November 2016
    That's a real issue indeed. The general public doesn't understand many subjects about cosmetic formulations, so still bad or average products are produced. Natural doesn't mean its good for skin automatically, constantly people are talking about chemical free products, which doesn't exist. Also they say lemon oil is good for this and that, people are constantly reviewing products based on how it smells.. Also people are saying silicones are bad, while they are the least allergenic ingredients out there.. nice dropper botlles...pffff.. and you could go on and on with all those misconceptions..

    But all those irritant plant extract and fragrance can simply cause collagen break down and phototoxic reactions in skin, even though you don't see that directly. So why are people willing to add those "natural" plant extracts and oils that have been proven to be irritants and phototoxic, also considering they don't have solid research proving anti-aging benefits.
  • @Peter

    >Natural doesn't mean its good for skin 
    i don't want to start a rant but yes!!!!

    >chemical free products, which doesn't exist.

    >people are constantly reviewing products based on how it smells.. 
    those reviews are worthless

    >nice dropper botlles...pffff
    i want to say more but i shalll zip it. enough said about bottles that open and allows bacteria / human contact.... and air. oxidation. light. 

    >But all those irritant plant extract and fragrance can simply cause collagen break down and phototoxic reactions in skin, even though you don't see that directly
    no.. this is something i am learning from you!

    :) we learn and we grow.. then we improve and stay young forever! lol 
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