If you’re schooled in the science of skincare, chances are you already know about the benefits of glycolic acid and Retin-A in boosting cell turnover, key to providing that elusive skincare “glow” written effusively about in beauty copy. But have you heard about salmon egg enzymes?
I had not, except maybe when talking about ikura in sushi restaurants. But now comes Restorsea, a skincare brand with the hero ingredient of an enzyme found in salmon eggs, which is responsible for dissolving their shells as they hatch. This copyrighted enzyme, Aquabeautine XL®, is unique for digesting only dead skin cells (unlike in the cases of Retin-A and glycolic, which affect both live and dead cells, hence the frequent peeling and redness side effects). I tried the Revitalizing Eye Cream, which purportedly uses the enzyme to reduce dark eye circles and crow’s feet.
The eye cream was obviously creamy, but with a texture similar to a dense clotted cream: It was light enough that you could see peaks and valleys. It surprisingly didn’t smell fishy and came with a small, curved applicator. The directions warned that due to the addition of hesperidin, a fruit-based enzyme responsible for increasing blood circulation, there would be some tingling around the eye area upon application. And it stingled (stung/tingled), a sensation I sadomasochistically interpreted to mean, “It’s working!”
Sadly, three days later, the “stingling” abated. For my mom, who tried it as well, there was no stingling effect whatsoever. But we both reported that there was a slight “tightening” effect upon using the cream, and it was moisturizing enough so that it “buffed” away under-eye wrinkles. Tested on one eye, the dark eye circles looked slightly lighter, if not “glowier.” I’m unsure as to whether the enzyme was effective in only “digesting” dead (versus alive) skin cells. It may have been what was happening behind the scenes, but I can report that there was no redness or peeling. I would only recommend using this as a night cream, as its texture was slightly too creamy to apply eye makeup over.