NeoStrata Enlighten Collection Initial Impressions

Neostrata is a brand that I have used in the past and I love their Glycolic Foaming Cleanser so much (see review here).   They use advanced research and science for skin regeneration since 1974 ~ Neostrata’s founders discovered the benefits of Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs).  They believe that visible results come from the renewing layers of our skin and focus on skin resurfacing and rejuvenation.  For over 40 years, Neostrata has continued to be a leader in skincare discoveries ~ such as Polyhydroxy Acids (PHA)s) and Aminofil™,  a patented amino acid that targets collagen and hyaluronic acid in your skin to help plump up and firm your skin.   I am thrilled to introduce to you the Enlighten Skincare Routine to you, courtesy of Neostrata via Brandbacker. NeoStatra Enlighten is a skincare routine that is carefully formulated to promote bright and even skin tones.  

“80% of women observed skin that was more, evenly colored, less blotchy, and had better clarity and radiance with this regimen. In a clinical study, a statistically significant improvement in skin tone/pigment was observed beginning at 4 weeks continuing to 16 weeks p <0.0001.93% of women from ethnically diverse populations showed improvement as early as four weeks with this regimen.” from NeoStrata

Skin type/concerns:  Oily, aging, blemish prone, pores, hyper-pigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles. 

I received these products complementary to review and was not paid.  All reviews are my own honest opinion and  I never have been asked to write copy for a brand.  This blog post might contain promo codes, affiliate and referral links, which using my links will help generate a small commission that helps support my blog at no extra cost to you.

Key Ingredients

  • Alpine Plant Extracts is brightening blend of botanical extracts, including mallow, peppermint, lemon balm and cowslip.
  • B-Resorcinol is the skin-lightening agent and licorice root molecule derived glycyrrhetinic acid, which is also an anti-inflammatory to heal the skin
  • Chardonnay Grape Seed Extract contains proanthocyanidins, resveratrol, flavonoids and more potent antioxidants that help to combat free radicals, preventing new damage while repairing existing damage. This also has soothing and calming properties. 
  • Licorice soothes and calms the skin, while acting as an anti-inflammatory and also reduces hyper-pigmentation.
  • NeoGlucosamine is a non-acid amino sugar, shown to exfoliate dark spots and the surface cells that can cause skin to appear mottled and dull
  • Niacinamide (vitamin B3) is a powerful antioxidant that acts as an anti-inflammatory, improves your skin elasticity, enhance the skin barrier function and also it helps to even out skin tone and reduce post-inflammatory hyper-pigmentation.
  • Retinol stimulates and aids in cellular renewal, which in turn helps diminish photo-aging, hyper-pigmentation dark spots and blemish scars. This also can help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and even out skin tones.   
  • SabiWhite® is a color-free standardized powdered extract from the roots of the Curcuma longa (turmeric) plant with skin whitening, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, as well as providing UVB protection. It scavenges and prevents the formation of free radicals. It also inhibits tyrosinase, which inhibits the skin from producing melanin. This product is color-free, unlike the brilliant yellow color of other turmeric extracts and can be used in anti-aging, skin lightening, sun care and after sun care formulations. SabiWhite® is a registered trademark of Sabinsa Corporation.  (source

NeoStrata does not conduct animal testing and all routine product testing, safety and claims are conducted by human volunteers or using in vitro models. Since they are a global company, they do make exceptions if it is demanded by authorities for safety or regulatory purposes.  NeoStrata sources ingredients from companies that currently follow the international animal testing bans. 

Textures: left, clockwise: Ultra Brightening Cleanser, Illuminating Serum, Pigment Controller, Skin Brightener SPF 25 

NeoStrata Enlighten Ultra Brightening Cleanser  This is one of my favorite items in this line. It is creamy, pearlescent, light yellowish-orange cleanser, which foams up gently, with a lovely light refreshing citrus scent.  This contains exfoliating NeoGlucosamine and brightening alpine botanicals.  This cleanser does not leave my skin dry or tight, leaves my skin clean and refreshed and it works beautifully as a second cleanser. This has a pH level of 6 to 6.5

Ingredients: Water, Disodium Lauroamphodiacetate, Sodium Trideceth Sulfate, Acetyl Glucosamine, Acrylates Copolymer, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Propylene Glycol, Glyceryl Stearate, Phenoxyethanol, PPG-2 Hydroxyethyl Cocamide, Glycerin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Fruit Extract, Achillea Millefolium Extract, Alchemilla Vulgaris Extract, Malva Sylvestris (Mallow) Extract, Melissa Officinalis (Lemon Balm) Leaf Extract, Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Leaf Extract, Primula Veris Extract, Veronica Officinalis (Speedwell) Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Peel Extract, Elettaria Cardamomum Seed Extract, Lavandula Angustfolia (Lavender) Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, Eugenia Caryophyllus (Clove) Flower Extract, Gardenia Tahitensis Flower Extract, Hedychium Spicatum Extract, Hibiscus Abelmoschus Extract, Jasminum Officinale (Jasmine) Flower/Leaf Extract, Plumeria Rubra Flower Extract, Polianthes Tuberosa Extract, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Fruit Extract, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Vanilla Planifolia Fruit Extract, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Glycol Distearate, Laureth-4, Ammonium Hydroxide, Disodium EDTA, BHT, Sodium Metabisulfite, Sodium Sulfite, Chlorphenesin, Limonene, CI 15985 (Yellow 6), CI 14700 (Red 4) cosDNA

NeoStrata Enlighten Illuminating Serum  This is the other favorite item in this series for me.  This lovely concentrated gel serum is lightweight and goes on like a watery dream.  It is clear with that same lovely citrus scent as the cleanser. This serum has 12 active brighteners, including niacinamide and licorice, that are designed to help reduce the appearance of existing hyper-pigmentation while preventing new dark spots.  It also contains exfoliating NeoGlucosamine and anti-inflammatory, brightening B-Resorcinol (4-Butylresorcinol).    Finally, this has tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate, a stable vitamin C that is fat soluble.  This is rated one of the best forms of vitamin C, as it can help aid skin penetration better.  I love the packaging on this one ~ it comes in a metal tube container with a pump applicator.

Due to its actives, I did do a pH test and it comes out at 4, which is mildly acidic, meaning it won’t sting or irritate your skin, perfect for sensitive skin.  It absorbs fairly quickly and leaves no sticky residue on my skin ~ my skin feels soft, supple and hydrated.   It increased my moisture levels by 31% and my oil levels by 29%, but I didn’t fee; that this left my skin greasy or oily.  

  • Before:  Moisture: 36%  Oil: 24%
  • After:    Moisture: 47%  Oil: 31%

It was perplexing to see a different bottle label and ingredient list on NeoStrata’s website.  I have to think this is the newly reformulated version of the product.  The ingredients list below is from the product I received. 

Ingredients: Water, Acetyl Glucosamine, Butylene Glycol, Alcohol Denat., Niacinamide, Polysorbate 80, Dimethicone PEG-7 Phosphate, Lavandula Angustfolia (Lavender) Flower/ Leaf/Stem Extract, 4-Butylresorcinol, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate (Vitamin C Ester), , Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Fruit Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Fruit Extract,  Jasminum Officinale (Jasmine) Flower/ Leaf Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Peel Extract,  Elettaria Cardamomum Seed Extract, Vanilla Planifolia Fruit Extract, Plumeria Rubra Flower Extract, Hedychium Spicatum Extract,  Hibiscus Abelmoschus Seed Extract, Gardenia Tahitensis Flower Extract, , Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Eugenia Caryophyllus (Clove) Flower Extract, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride,  Hydroxyethylcellulose, Caprylyl Glycol, Sodium Bisulfite, Chlorphenesin, Phenoxyethanol, Linalool, Limonene, Hydroxycitronellal, Benzyl Alcohol, CI 17200 (Red 33), CI 19140 (Yellow 5)  cosDNA

NeoStrata Enlighten Pigment Controller  So this is an advanced formula that contains clinically proven technologies to control pigmentation.  This contains several brightening and exfoliation ingredients ~ 0.1% of retinol, which is an ingredient that I actively go out of my way to look for in anti-aging skincare, exfoliating NeoGlucosamine, a stable form of vitamin C in the form of ascorbyl glucoside, which is vitamin C and glucose antioxidant compound,  helping skin look smoother and brighter. Vitamin E will help protect your skin from free radical damage, while protects the skin from further damage.  This also has patented SabiWhite®, which is proven to be an alternative to hydroquinone and it will help reduce the production of hyper-pigmentation. 

This comes in a soft vinyl tube with a pump applicator and it is only to be applied all over the face once daily for 2 weeks and then twice a day after that ~  I guess is for your skin to get used to the retinol.  I found that this yellowish lightweight lotion was easy to apply on my skin and it isn’t smell as nice as the first two products.  It had a light citrus scent but had a stronger bitter medical scent over it. It did absorb nicely with no sticky or tacky residue. This product has “optical diffusers” to brighten the skin immediately, and I did notice an evening out on my skin tone with this. 

Ingredients: Water, Acetyl Glucosamine, PEG-8, Dimethicone, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Octyldodecyl Neopentanoate, Butylene Glycol, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Hydrogenated Polyisobutene, Propylene Glycol Hydroxystearate, Nylon-12, Cetearyl Alcohol, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Arginine, Retinol (0.1%), Citric Acid, Tetrahydrodiferuloylmethane, Tocopheryl (Vitamin E) Acetate, Glycerin, Melissa Officinalis (Lemon Balm) Leaf Extract, Veronica Officinalis Extract, Vanilla Planifolia Fruit Extract, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Fruit Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Peel Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Fruit Extract, Lavandula Angustfolia (Lavender) Flower/Leaf/ Stem Extract, Primula Veris Extract, Alchemilla Vulgaris (Lady’s Mantle) Extract, Plumeria Rubra Flower Extract, Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Leaf Extract, Malva Sylvestris (Mallow) Extract, Achillea Millefolium (Yarrow) Extract, Jasminum Officinale (Jasmine) Flower/Leaf Extract, Hibiscus Abelmoschus Extract, Hedychium Spicatum Extract, Eugenia Caryophyllus (Clove) Flower Extract, Gardenia Tahitensis Flower Extract, Elettaria Cardamomum Seed Extract, Polianthes Tuberosa Extract, Caprylyl Glycol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Steareth-20, Ceteth-20, Polysorbate 20, PEG-75 Stearate, Xanthan Gum, Cetyl Alcohol, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/VP Copolymer, BHT, Disodium EDTA, Hydroxycitronellal, Limonene, Linalool, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin, CI 19140 (Yellow 5), CI 17200 (Red 33) cosDNA

NeoStrata Enlighten Skin Brightener SPF 25  This is a sunscreen + moisturizer and it is my least favorite item, only because I do not like my moisturizer to be part of my sunscreen!  I also prefer more fluid sunscreens and ones with a higher SPF than 25.  That said, this is a triple action moisturizer that will help reduce the appearance of hyper-pigmentation, brighten overall skin tone and protect your skin from UVA/UVB rays with 3 chemical blockers: 7.5% Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate (Octinoxate), 5%  Ethylhexyl Salicylate (Octisalate) and 3% Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane (Avobenzone).  This is a broad spectrum sunscreen, but I wish it had a higher SPF rating.   

Skin brighteners B-Resorcinol and patented SabiWhite® will suppress the production of enzyme tyrosinase, which will prevent hyper-pigmentation.  This also has antioxidant, protecting vitamin E and Chardonnay grape seed extract, a potent antioxidant and soothing ingredient.   This comes in the same type of packaging as the Pigment Controller. 

This is oil free and  fragrance free and is non-acnegenic and non-comedogenic.  The sunscreen is VERY white looking from the tube, but after massaging it into my skin, it doesn’t leave a white cast.  It leaves my skin dewy and moist, which as an oily skinned person, isn’t what I am looking for.  I think if you have drier skin, you would love the texture a lot more than I did.  It didn’t break me out but I felt really glossy when wearing it. 

Active Ingredients: Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate (Octinoxate) 7.5%, Ethylhexyl Salicylate (Octisalate) 5%, Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane (Avobenzone) 3%

Ingredients: Water, Acetyl Glucosamine, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate (7.5%), Ethylhexyl Salicylate (5%), Butyloctyl Salicylate, Dimethicone, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Glycerin, Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane (3%), Cyclopentasiloxane, Glyceryl Stearate, Butylene Glycol, Cyclohexasiloxane, Octyldodecyl Neopentanoate, Cetyl Alcohol, PEG-100 Stearate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Tocopheryl (Vitamin E) Acetate, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Extract, Tetrahydrodiferuloylmethane, 4-Butylresorcinol, Ceteth-20, PEG-75 Stearate, Propylene Glycol, Disodium EDTA, Steareth-20, Xanthan Gum, Ammonium Hydroxide, Sodium Bisulfite, Carbomer, Caprylyl Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin cosDNA

Final Thoughts 

You do need to use these for 4 to 16 weeks to see brightening skin tones, based on the clinical studies, so, I haven’t seen the brightening results yet as this is an initial impressions review.  However, I am really enjoying the Illuminating Serum and the Ultra Brightening Cleanser a lot. The Serum is a treat to use and I love how it brightens my skin while hydrating it.  Have you tried any NeoStrata products?  Which ones? 

Where to Purchase

NeoStrata, of course! You get free shipping and 3 free samples with every order $75.00 or more.  

If you are outside of the USA, check out their International listing and pick the region you are in (click here) It’s pretty comprehensive ~ they list individual countries under the categories of North, Central & South America, Europe, Middle East/Africa and Far East/Asia. I think they need to add Antarctica here ~ haha

[ Powered by BrandBacker ~ products received complementary for review purposes ]


3 thoughts on “NeoStrata Enlighten Collection Initial Impressions

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