I received this Goldfaden 3-in-1 Face Tightening & Firming Complex from the Dermstore Fall 2012 Super Lux Grab Bag #2 but had only started using it about 2 months ago.
Goldfaden is a dermatologist brand I haven't tried before, not that I've tried many dermatologist brands. I do want to point out that while the brand is giving itself a makeover, it isn't exactly being efficient at it. There are 2 distinct-looking websites that are both concurrently active, the old Goldfaden website versus the new Goldfaden website. Each website sells a line of skincare product that's pretty much the same (same names, same ingredients, etc.) but with entirely different packaging. The only difference I noticed was that the newer website carries more products. The worst part is that the neither of the websites bothers to explain that the brand is going through an update, not even a passing mention! It's like each denies the other's existence! When I was looking up this brand, I seriously thought I had found a fraudulent copycat! What the hell?!?
Anyway, the website confusion certainly colored my impression of this product. This "complex" is a targeting treatment, for frown lines, crows feet, laugh lines, etc. The claim is that it tightens, smoothes, and firms with "extraordinary results." The outer packaging warns of "the slight tightening sensation upon application," and instructs to follow with the usual moisturizer. It's unscented and comes in a glass bottle with a dropper cap.
Well, let's just say upon opening the bottle, the very first thing I noticed is that the "complex" looks cakey. By cakey, I mean I can tell there are some sort of powder, starch, or clay in it. And not only it looks that way, it feels that way too to the touch, and especially so upon application. There's a "slight tightening sensation upon application" alright - it feels as though I've dabbed wet cornstarch onto my skin and let dry. After application, my fingers are left feeling starchy and chalky, with visible caking on my fingerprints!
So I started googling each and every ingredient listed. And what do you know, I was correct. The 3rd ingredient on the list is Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, and guess what that is - kaolin clay! No wonder the tightening sensation! When you put wet clay on your skin, of course it will pull your skin taut as it dries! A deep cleansing mud mask is nice, but you actually wash the mud mask off whereas this product stays on under moisturizer and whatnot. Don't even get me started on the 2nd ingredient, Sodium Silicate - why don't you read for yourself what it's used for? Is this what they meant by tightening and firming "complex", water + adhesive agent + clay? Are you f*cking kidding me? Have I been putting chalky glue on my face all this time?
Both of the brand's websites tout Dr. Goldfaden's application of red tea extract, which is supposedly a powerful antioxidant. But, umm, red tea extract is also the very last ingredient on the list, which in this country means it's the least by concentration, versus the first 3 ingredients of distilled water, adhesive agent, and clay. I feel like I've been tricked in the worst of ways. Good thing I didn't pay full price for this bottle, because that would have been a scam.
But hey, I did give it a good trial with morning and night use, and almost 2 months later, I can honestly tell you this product is utter crap! Because of the clay overload, it cakes instantly upon application and balls whatever goes on next, be it lotion or cream or whatever. I would apply this, layer on cream, rub balls of it off, then apply another layer of cream because the first layer I just applied is gone. Urgh. And no I didn't slather it on. The websites say to use sparingly and sparing I was with it. I didn't even use the dropper cap. I just opened it up, wiped a little bit of what's on the tip of the dropper!
In conclusion, I gave my bottle to the trash bin. Do I recommend it? Nope, not even as a freebie.