Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Dr Dennis Gross Clinical Concentrate Radiance Booster

What is it?
'A professional-strength time-released concentrate that can be mixed into your favorite products to enhance their benefits, or used alone to visibly optimize skin’s healthy appearance for a refreshed, youthful, radiant complexion.'

Who is it for?
Anyone lacking radiance, vitality and my obsession - 'glow'.

But who can actually use it?
Everyone bar extremely sensitive. But even then I would buy it and avoid cheeks etc...that's me though. You do you. I have no pain threshold anywhere on my body except my face. Bring. It. On.

What’s in it?
Yucca Glauca Root Extract, Glycerin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Polyacrylamide, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Centella Asiatica Extract, Quercetin Caprylate, Pyruvic Acid, Tartaric Acid, Linoleic Acid, Bisabolol, Resveratrol, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Citrullus Lanatus (Watermelon) Fruit Extract, Retinol, Salicylic Acid, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Ellagic Acid, Tocopheryl Acetate, Ceramide 2, Symphytum Officinale Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Extract, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Potassium Azeloyl Diglycinate, Saccharide Isomerate, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Ferulic Acid, Gallic Acid, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Glycolic Acid, Lactic Acid, Commiphora Myrrha Oil, Copper PCA, Sodium PCA, Mandelic Acid, Tetrapeptide-21, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Extract, Glyceryl Oleate, Acrylates/Carbamate Copolymer, Butylene Glycol, C13-14 Isoparaffin, Zinc PCA, Urea, Laureth-7, Polysorbate 20, Disodium EDTA, Phytic Acid, Octoxynol-9, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance.

Possibly acne/allergy/troubling for some ingredients?
Fragrance, albeit a teeny amount.
Acids. But then that's kind of the point....

Natural? Organic? Man made? Vegan?

Tested on animals/sold in China?

What's not in it?

How do you use it?
Apply daily in serum stage - am or pm. I prefer to use it in the morning - I don't particularly need a 'healthy glow' in the evenings, although it would obviously work to help resurface etc overnight. I would definitely travel with it as a multi-purpose serum if I had to pack light. But let's face it, I'm more likely to pack a ton of skincare and no shoes.

What’s good about it?
This is a typical US formulation, in that it contains a bit of everything. Think of a massive buffet of skincare ingredients laid out before you. The French are picky, take 2 or 3 main ingredients and then use those throughout their range in different strengths depending on the products. The Far East usually focus on one key ingredient - take SKII as a case in point, and then build an entire range around it. The American formulators, however, in a lot of cases, fill the plate with everything. It's much more of a 'throw everything at the wall and something will stick' mentality. That's not a bad thing, like the other regions, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.
In this case, a lot of ingredients give you a product that does a little of everything and works quickly. Most acids, including pyruvic to help with hyperpigmentation, tartaric - AHA, glycolic to exfoliate and linoleic to help cell reproduction and turnover, retinol - obvs and peptides just to be getting on with. 

What’s not so good about it?
I would normally be concerned about overkill and maybe the danger of the ingredients cancelling each other out, but based on my usage so far and that like all forms of potato, I have yet to meet a Dr Gross product that I didn't like, I am completely giving this the benefit of the doubt.

Similar products?
Rose Radiance Skin Serum - Aromatherapy Associates (nowhere near as acid-laden though)
Vinoperfect Radiance Serum - Caudalie
Advanced Active Radiance Serum - Murad
Good Genes - Sunday Riley
Revitalise and Glow Serum - Aurelia
Get Up and Glow - OSKIA

Exchange rate – does it punish the UK?
Not yet no. Because I haven't found it here yet!

Dennis Gross MD Clinical Concentrate Radiance Booster is $68.00 from Sephora and available here:


  1. Interesting product! Good morning and thank you for another super review! X

  2. Hi Caroline. The ingredient C13-14 isoparaffin, is this a type of mineral oil???

    1. I was wondering the same thing as I've been avoiding this ingredient thinking that it was. Please enlighten us Caroline :)

    2. It's a derivative. Not neat paraffin don't worry. That's why it's light enough to be in a serum and is toward the end of the inci list. X

    3. Ooh lovely thank you, maybe I'll be able to revisit some of my favourites that I'd dismissed because this was in it. Thank you Caroline for sharing your wisdom with us x

    4. Caroline answered a question I asked. #fallsontheflooranddieshappy#myIdol. Thanks for d advice too๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. Is that mineral oil in the inci?

  4. This looks lovely! And can you believe it, they actually sell this at Mecca here in Australia?! Amazing! Great review Caroline *adds to Wishlist* :)

  5. It's available from Space NK UK online as part of the Dr Dennis Clinical Concentrate Kit. 3x15ml boosters (Radiance, Hydration, Purifying) for £72.50.
    That's a bit of a mark up though, as Sephora US sells the same kit for $58! Albeit that's before tax but still quite a mark up....

  6. So glad you reviewed this! I've been eying this and also the hydration booster.

  7. Thank you for the options!!!!! You see? this is why you are my favorite and many others' because you give such a great review with clear facts that we can put to use. I need this kind of serum but can't get it here so I am going for the Caudalie one,
    Thank you!


    You can get it from feelunique for £55!

    1. How weird it must have come back in stock overnight. It wasn't there when I wrote this!

    2. Wowsers!! Chuffed with your reply! I bet you could fill the o2 with all us loyal fans! You've made my day! X

  9. How funny. I just brought this product. Can't wait to start using it.

  10. Hi! I don't live in the UK, but just saw this on Amazon for £55..... In case someone is interested!!!! I am, of course..... Caroline, still waiting for the box..... When in may???? I am dying here!!!! ๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜‰

  11. Hi Caroline! Might Alpha-H Liquid Gold Radiance be considered a similar product, too? Fewer ingredients, to your point about U.S. formulations, but in the same ballpark?

  12. You can actually get this serum as part of a three- part set from SpaceNK. You get 15mls of this one along with 15 miles of Hydration Booster and Oil Control serums. Cost about €90 or so.

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  14. Hi Caroline! Great review, quick question - when you say super sensitive would this mean if you can't use Alpha H Liquid Gold, you probably wouldn't be able to use this? Thanks ๐Ÿ˜„

  15. I love how different countries use their ingredients...a lot like the food of each country too!

  16. Like many vegan skincare products, it unfortunately contains several plants I'm allergic to, but the info on how different countries formulate is fascinating and valuable! Explains why I tend to get along well with French skincare over American.

    Also makes me want to go looking for Far East skincare... ;-)

  17. Dear Caroline

    I'm a huuuge fan of yours, thanks to you my skin has improved so much!

    I'm in desperate need of your adivce: I'll be backpacking through Thailand and Australia for 3 months in Summer so i need to bring as little as possible with me, which also affects the amount of skincare i can bring. :-(
    It would be lovely if you could give me a thumbs up/down on what i plan on bringing and if you could recommend a serum. Actually i though the Dr. Dennis Gross Clinical Concentrace Radiance Booster could be it? (Or in the Set with the Hydration Booster and the Purifying Booster?)

    What i plan on bringing:

    TBS Nutriganics Softening Cleansing Gel

    Pixi Glow Tonic
    Clearasil Refreshing Super Pads
    TBS Aloe Calming Toner

    First Aid Beauty 5 in 1 Cream
    REN Vita Mineral Daily Supplement Moisturizer
    La-Roche Posay Effaclar Duo+

    Should I bring another cleanser?
    A Serum? See above..
    Obviously I'll bring tons of SPF :-)

    Oh, I'm 27 with combination skin (i think). I would really appreciate a recommendation and I hope i made this as simple as possible for you. Thank you so so sooooooo much in advance already!


  18. Great for a "I need HELP"-kind of day, as it attacks everything.

    LindaLibraLoca: Beauty, Baby and Backpacking