Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Splurge vs. Steal

Right before my wedding, I went on a skincare product binge (because if you can't justify that right before your wedding you OBVIOUSLY AREN'T WORKING IT HARD ENOUGH). One product that I picked up and luuurrvveeeed is Philosophy's Microdelivery Peel. I'm almost out . . .I have probably one use left, along with the 1 use or so I have leftover in teensy airline approved containers. Yep, I loved it so much I TOOK IT TO WALES with me. Since the price of the Philosophy peel is admittedly pretty steep, when I noticed Olay's copycat product on Target's shelves I pounced. And then, because I love you all so much, I thought I'd do a line by line comparison so you won't have to spend over $100 trying both products:

Philosophy Microdelivery Peel vs. Olay Regenerist Microdermabrasion Peel

SMACKDOWN!

Price
Philosophy: $65
Olay: $29.99


Olay wins, hands down.

Promises:
Philosophy: The Microdelivery Peel Kit not only exfoliates the skin, it delivers vitamin C and peptides to the skin. This completely new approach to skin rejuvenation resurfaces and replenishes the skin at the same time.
Olay: Results you will experience with the Olay Regenerist System: Gently resurfaces skin's texture; Activates surface cell renewal; Conditions skin to leave it feeling soft and smooth; Visibly improves skin tone; Diminishes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.


Same beans.

Smell
Philosophy: Like fresh oranges.
Olay: Like Tang.


Maybe not the most crucial consideration, but Philosophy wins it.

Method
Philosophy: Scrub face with crystals, apply activator, wait and rinse.
Olay: Exactly the same.


Both products are equally easy to use.

Ingredients
Philosophy:
Bicarbonate Vitamin C Crystals: PEG-6, Sodium Bicarbonate, Oleth-20, Glyceryl Stearate (SE), Silica, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Retinyl Palmitate, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Oil, Beta Carotene, Isopropylparaben, Isobutylparaben, Butylparaben, Sodium Hydroxymethylglycinate.
Rapid Activation Gel: Water (Aqua), Lactic Acid, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Linoleamidopropyl Pg-Dimonium Chloride Phosphate, Polyquaternium 10, Propylene Glycol, Diazolidinyl Urea, Methylparaben, Propylparaben.
Olay:

Microdermabrasion Treatment with Derma-Crystals: PEG-8, Sodium Bicarbonate, Silica Silylate, Polysorbate 20, Niacinamide, Tocopheryl Acetate, Ascorbic Acid, Fragrance, Yellow 5, Red 40.
Peel Activator Serum: Water, Sodium Lactate, Lactic Acid, Butylene Glycol, DMDM Hydantoin, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Disodium EDTA.

I'm no chemist, but I see a lot of the same ingredients. Ascorbic Acid is Vitamin C, so both contain that as well as Lactic Acid. Philosophy gets bonus points for the natural orange oil and apparent lack of fragrances and dyes.

Texture
Philosophy: Crystals are quite fine. Activator foams but does not sting.
Olay: Crystals are still finer than in most scrubs (St. Ives Apricot Scrub, I AM LOOKING AT YOU!), but noticeably grittier than Philosophy's crystals. Mild stinging when activator was applied.

Philosophy wins, although not overwhelmingly.

Results
Philosophy: Leaves my skin as soft as a baby's bottom, and feeling especially fresh and clean without any dryness or irritation.
Olay: Left my skin very soft, although with the teensy-est bit of almost imperceptible redness.

Philosophy wins. But by enough to merit the additional $35 price tag?

Essentially, Olay's peel is a knockoff. And frankly, it isn't quite as pleasant to use as Philosophy's. If you have especially sensitive skin, it is without a doubt worth your money to splurge on the Philosophy peel. As far as a budget alternative goes though, especially when purchased on sale at Target with a coupon (for $16.95!!!), the Olay peel is a viable, nearly equivalent alternative.

Anyone have any splurge vs. steal beauty advice to share? I'm all ears!

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