That said, I'll do my best for Philosophy's Time in a Bottle, because I think for the right skin type, it's pretty extraordinary.
According to Philosophy, Time in a Bottle promises to "defy the appearance of all major signs of aging" by "helping to promote skin's natural renewal and protections processes".
It is indeed loaded with a LOT of antioxidants and skin-benefiting extracts, and has mix-when-you're-ready format for integrating the high potency vitamin C (the little pink jar in the photo below). The later helps to preserve the vitamin C's integrity, and effectiveness.
Ingredients: Water, Dimethicone, Alcohol Denat., Bis-Peg-18 Methyl Ether Dimethylsilane, Cyclopentasiloxane, Peg-8, Butylene Glycol, Polyethylene, Glycerin, Dimethiconol, Methoxy Peg-18, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Coffee Arabica (Coffee) Seed Extract, Pongamia Pinnata Seed Extract, Angelica Archangelica Root Extract, Citrus Aurantium Amara (Bitter Orange) Peel Extract, Punica Granatum Fruit Extract, Plankton Extract, Ptfe, Bifida Ferment Lysate, Peg-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Squalane, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Tocopherol, Polysorbate 60, Lecithin, Sclerotium Gum, Hydrolyzed Soy Flour, Retinyl Palmitate, Propylene Glycol, Caprylyl Glycol, Micrococcus Lysate, Bacillus Ferment, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Maltodextrin, Trisodium Edta, Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein, Disodium Edta, Sodium Phosphate, Sodium Hydroxide, Potassium Phosphate, Potassium Chloride, Sorbic Acid, Adenosine, Sodium Benzoate, Citric Acid, Parfum/Fragrance, 1,2-Hexanediol, Silica, Xanthan Gum, Ascorbic Acid, Lactic Acid, Sodium Chloride, Alcohol, Acetic Acid, Phenoxyethanol, Bht, Mica, Titanium Dioxide (Ci 77891).
Kind of overwhelming to look at, but the fact that the extracts and antioxidants are right up there as opposed to the end of the list is a good indicator that they're not token amounts, good for nothing but label appeal.
A couple of the more interesting ones I found while googling the ingredients:
Coffee Arabica (Coffee) Seed Extract - helps to smooth and tighten the skin, and protect against photo-aging. (Link to survey of studies.)
Bifida Ferment Lysate - has been shown to reduce skin sensitivity. (Link to study.)
Pongamia Pinnata Seed Extract - has been shown to reduce inflammation. (Link to study.)
Squalane has a pretty established skincare record as a great lubricant and moisturizer, as does glycerine as a humectant. This formulation also contains alcohol - and a lot of it, as it is a primary ingredient. While this does give the serum a very lightweight feel and is a good carrier for the extracts and other ingredients, it can exacerbate dry skin, or provoke an overcompensation of oil production.
Despite the alcohol content, I am extremely fond of this product for the effect it has on my skin, and the loads of positive comments I have received about how nice my skin looks on days that I've used it.
I think in terms of creating a smoother, firmer, more radiant-looking skin, Time in a Bottle wins across all categories. The effects were marginally visible after one use, and more so with every use until the difference was obvious at one week. My skin looked more taut, the grain appeared finer, and my pores looked diminished. I also had a definite glow that wasn't shiny or shimmery.
As nice as the effects were, they were magnified dramatically when I applied makeup. I don't know if it altered the way my foundation sat on my skin, but something about it also provides an excellent priming function. The effect was most pronounced with my Lancome Teint Visionnaire (which has skincare benefits as well), but it made all of my foundations look smoother, more radiant, more skin-like, and with near invisible pores. Friends, family, even random makeup counter SAs stopped to tell me how lovely my skin looked.
All that to say - this is almost my new best friend. However, I do find that I have to take occasional breaks from it, or else reserve it for days when I need my skin to look outrageously good. When I used it for four weeks straight, I found that my skin started to get more distinctly combination - oilier in my oily areas, more dry in my dry areas. Not dramatically so, but enough that I noticed. It's worth mentioning that this is also the time of the year when heating and dry air can wreak havoc with my complexion, so it's difficult to parse out how much the alcohol component is responsible.
As of right now, I'm using it part of the time, and almost like a primer for it's skin-smoothing and tightening properties. (Though I still layer a moisturizer over it in my dry areas.) It might not be true love, but it's pretty darn close!
Availability: At Sephora stores and online, as well as www.philosophy.com. Price is 74$ CAD and USD.
Have any of you tried Time in a Bottle? Has it been a skin saviour for you?
(This item was provided by the brand/PR to be considered for review. This post is not sponsored or compensated. Contains affiliate links. All opinions are my own.)