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{"id":556691062857,"title":"Zo Skin Health Review: Are The Formulations Worth The Price?","created_at":"2022-06-24T23:07:45-04:00","body_html":"\u003cscript type=\"application\/ld+json\"\u003e\/\/ \u003c![CDATA[\n{\n \"@context\": \"https:\/\/schema.org\",\n \"@type\": \"Article\",\n \"headline\": \"Zo Skin Health Review: Are The Formulations Worth The Price?\",\n \"keywords\": \"zo skin health, zo skin health review, zo skin health reviews, zo skin health growth factor serum, zo skin health exfoliating polish\",\n \"description\": \"Our MD and research team review the ingredients in Zo Skin Health's most popular products based on published medical studies to determine if we believe they're likely to be effective for anti-aging. We highlight real user reviews of the brand and explain an issue we have with their claims of clinical efficacy.\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/zo-skin-health-review\",\n\"author\": {\n \"@type\": \"Person\",\n \"name\": \"Taylor Graber MD\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/taylor-graber\",\n \"sameAs\": \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/in\/taylor-j-graber-md-81351642\/\",\n \"jobTitle\": \"Content Partner\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"medicine, health, anesthesiology, iv therapy, science, drugs, pharmaceutical, medical research, scientific research, medical journals, entrepreneurship, healthcare, orthopedic surgery, biomedical engineering\",\n \"alumniOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"EducationalOrganization\",\n \"name\": [\n \"University of California San Diego\",\n \"Arizona University\",\n \"University of Arizona College of Medicine\"\n ]\n },\n \"memberOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n }\n},\n\"creator\": {\n \"@type\": \"Person\",\n \"name\": \"Taylor Graber MD\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/taylor-graber\",\n \"sameAs\": \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/in\/taylor-j-graber-md-81351642\/\",\n \"jobTitle\": \"Content Partner\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"medicine, health, anesthesiology, iv therapy, science, drugs, pharmaceutical, medical research, scientific research, medical journals, entrepreneurship, healthcare, orthopedic surgery, biomedical engineering\",\n \"alumniOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"EducationalOrganization\",\n \"name\": [\n \"University of California San Diego\",\n \"Arizona University\",\n \"University of Arizona College of Medicine\"\n ]\n },\n \"memberOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n }\n},\n\"contributor\": {\n \"@type\": \"Person\",\n \"name\": \"Calloway Cook\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/calloway-cook\",\n \"sameAs\": \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/in\/calloway-cook\/\",\n \"jobTitle\": \"President\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"entrepreneurship, dietary supplements, herbal supplements, eCommerce, medical research\",\n \"alumniOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"EducationalOrganization\",\n \"name\": \"S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University\"\n },\n \"memberOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n }\n},\n\"editor\": {\n \"@type\": \"Person\",\n \"name\": \"DJ Mazzoni\",\n \"honorificSuffix\": [\n \"M.S.\",\n \"R.D.\",\n \"C.D.N.\",\n \"C.S.C.S.\"\n ],\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/dj-mazzoni\",\n \"sameAs\": \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/in\/dj-mazzoni-rd-cdn-cscs-00a33038\/\",\n \"jobTitle\": \"Medical Reviewer\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"exercise, drugs, pharmaceutical, health, workout, strength and conditioning, nutrition, dietetics, medicine, medical research, scientific research, scientific method, healthcare, patient care, wellness\",\n \"alumniOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"EducationalOrganization\",\n \"name\": [\n \"State University of New York College Oswego\",\n \"D’Youville College\"\n ]\n },\n \"memberOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n }\n},\n\"image\": {\n\"@type\": \"ImageObject\",\n\"url\": \"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Zo_Skin_Health_Thumbnail.png?v=1656127239\",\n\"width\": \"3149\",\n\"height\": \"3149\"\n},\n\"citation\": [\n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/31077089\/\", \n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/22998411\/\",\n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/18510666\/\",\n\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC8395926\/\",\n\"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/nexxus-shampoo-review\",\n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/25599186\/\",\n\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC5124675\/\",\n\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC2923951\/\",\n\"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/beautycounter-review\",\n\"https:\/\/zoskinhealth.com\/pages\/clinical-proof\",\n\"https:\/\/www.fakespot.com\/product\/zo-skin-health-exfoliating-polish-formerly-offects-exfoliating-polish\"\n],\n\"mentions\": [{\n \"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"glycerin\"\n },\n {\n \"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"fragrance\"\n },\n {\n \"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"artificial dye\"\n },\n {\n \"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"FakeSpot\"\n }\n],\n\"datePublished\": \"2022-06-24\",\n\"copyrightHolder\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n},\n\"publisher\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/\",\n \"description\": \"Illuminate Labs is the most transparent supplement company in the U.S., and is a leading publisher of research-based health information.\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"supplements, science, nutrition, exercise, health, medication, pharmaceutical, wellness, diet, weight loss, medical research\",\n \"publishingPrinciples\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/editorial-guidelines\",\n \"logo\": {\n \"@type\": \"ImageObject\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Illuminate_Labs_Logo.png?v=1641249064\", \n \"width\": 150,\n \"height\": 150\n},\n \"foundingDate\": \"2019-01-30\",\n \"Address\": {\n \"@type\": \"PostalAddress\",\n \"streetAddress\": \"50 Union Street, Unit 9\",\n \"addressLocality\": \"Northampton\",\n \"addressRegion\": \"Massachusetts\",\n \"postalCode\": \"01060\",\n \"addressCountry\": \"US\"\n},\n \"sameAs\": [\n \"https:\/\/www.instagram.com\/illuminatelabs\",\n \"https:\/\/twitter.com\/illuminatelabs\",\n \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/company\/illuminate-labs-supplements\",\n \"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/channel\/UCpgSJAsIPb-fZ25djtTxBEA\"\n ]\n }\n}\n\/\/ ]]\u003e\u003c\/script\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cimg src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Zo_Skin_Health_Review_Article_Header_Image_Optimized.png?v=1656126886\" alt=\"\"\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan class=\"dc\"\u003eZ\u003c\/span\u003eo Skin Health is a skincare brand that’s been highly-lauded by reviewers. Their products have won awards from Cosmopolitan, Reader’s Digest and Good Housekeeping. The brand suggests that their products have an anti-aging effect, and that they may shield the body from signs of aging in a proactive capacity.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIn this article we’ll review the ingredients in Zo Skin Health’s best-selling products based on published medical research to determine if we believe they’re properly formulated for anti-aging effect. We’ll highlight reviews from real users and suggest some alternatives we believe may be superior.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eZo Skin Health Exfoliating Polish Review\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cimg src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Zo_Skin_Health_Exfoliating_Polish_Ingredients_Optimized.png?v=1656127145\" alt=\"Zo Skin Health Exfoliating Polish ingredients\" style=\"display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;\"\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOne of Zo Skin Health’s most popular products is an exfoliating polish. The brand claims that the magnesium oxide crystals in the formulation “slough away dead skin cells” which has the effect of “leaving skin instantly soft and smooth.” The brand does not cite these claims, and we cannot find any medical research suggesting that topical magnesium oxide has any beneficial dermatological effects.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOne of the first active ingredients in Zo Skin Health Exfoliating Polish is \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003esodium bicarbonate\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e, and we do not understand this inclusion in a skincare formulation. The only \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/31077089\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emedical trial\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e we could find on topical sodium bicarbonate found the ingredient ineffective at improving symptoms of psoriasis.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOne potentially effective ingredient is \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003eMelaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Leaf Oil\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e. This essential oil may be effective at improving damaged skin. A \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/22998411\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emedical review\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e on tea tree oil for dermatological conditions found that early research proved this botanical compound effective at treating acne and skin lesions due to its antibacterial effect.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOur only issue with this ingredient listing on Zo Skin Health’s site is that the concentration isn’t listed. Tea tree oil, like most essential oils, is effective in a narrow range of concentrations and may be damaging to skin at too high of a concentration. For this reason cosmetics manufacturers should always list the concentration of essential oils.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cb\u003eGlycerin\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e is an effective and common active ingredient in this formulation which \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/18510666\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eis proven\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e to positively impact skin hydration and skin barrier function.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis product contains an interesting compound called \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003eTetrahexyldecyl ascorbate\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e which is an ester of Vitamin C. Zo Skin Health claims this ingredient “helps to brighten skin” however we would disagree with this assessment. \u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eA \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC8395926\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emedical review\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e of this ingredient published in 2021 in the \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ci\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/i\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e suggested that this compound was likely ineffective for improving skin quality unless another stabilizing compound was included in the formulation (which Zo Skin Health Exfoliating Polish doesn’t have): “[Tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate] may itself lack stability within the dermal microenvironment. This study showed that [tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate] has limited oxygen radical absorbance capacity and undergoes rapid degradation when exposed to singlet oxygen…This degradation, however, could be prevented by the addition of acetyl zingerone.”\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis serum also has several ingredients that we recommend consumers avoid for health reasons. \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003eFragrance\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e provides no dermatological benefits and may be unsafe. As we discussed at length in our recent review of \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/nexxus-shampoo-review\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eNexxus Shampoo\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e, another personal care product containing fragrance, this ingredient may be harmful to human health based on medical research.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis formulation also contains an artificial dye \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003eGreen 5\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e which we rarely have seen in skincare products. We would strongly recommend that consumers avoid putting products with artificial dye on their face. Artificial dyes can be absorbed through skin according to \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/25599186\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emedical research\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e, and may be harmful to human health. The study authors of the linked research review state the following: “The consuming public is largely unaware of the perilous truth behind the deceptive allure of artificial color.”\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOverall we find this to be a poor formulation and definitely worse than the majority of skincare products we’ve reviewed. We cannot identify one single active ingredient with a documented anti-aging effect, and the product contains several ingredients we would recommend avoiding for health reasons.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThere are a few ingredients which may benefit skin health in this product, but for a price of $68 for 2.3 ounces (oz) we would expect a much better formulation.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\n\u003cb\u003eZo Skin Health Growth Factor Serum\u003c\/b\u003e \u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cmeta charset=\"utf-8\"\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cimg src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Zo_Skin_Health_Growth_Factor_Serum_Ingredients_Optimized.png?v=1656127167\" alt=\"Zo Skin Health Growth Factor Serum ingredients\" style=\"display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;\"\u003e\u003cspan\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eGrowth Factor Serum is the second-most-reviewed product on Zo Skin Health’s site, with 701 reviews. It’s also on their best-seller list. The brand claims that this product can reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis formulation contains a novel compound called \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003ehydrolyzed sericin\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e which is an effective anti-aging ingredient. A recent \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC5124675\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emedical review\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e documented the cosmetic benefits of this compound. It has anti-wrinkle effects when applied topically, and can also cause an increase in skin hydration and elasticity.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAnother efficacious ingredient in this serum is \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003edipeptide diaminobutyroyl benzylamide diacetate\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e. This compound was studied in a formulation used in a \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC2923951\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eclinical trial\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e for its effects on facial wrinkles and demonstrated positive effects. 86% of patients reported reduced wrinkles around the eyes after 3 months of treatment with this ingredient, and 71% of patients reported reduced wrinkles around the upper lip.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe study authors also reported clinical improvements in wrinkles which matched those reported by the participants. We cannot assign these results to the dipeptide ingredient alone, but it’s still promising early research.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cb\u003eTocopherol\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e is included in this formulation, and it’s a good choice for a topical serum because of its photoprotective effects. As referenced in our \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/beautycounter-review\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eBeautycounter reviews\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e article, this ingredient has significant medical backing for its ability to reduce the damaging effects of UV rays on skin.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eUnfortunately, like the Exfoliating Polish, this product contains fragrance. The serum does not contain any artificial dyes which makes it a safer choice than the previous product reviewed in our opinion.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe do believe that this formulation is likely to be effective for anti-aging because it has multiple ingredients proven in legitimate medical studies to be effective for that outcome.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eQuestionable Efficacy Claims\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eZo Skin Health has \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/zoskinhealth.com\/pages\/clinical-proof\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003ea page\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e on their site called “Clinical Proof.” It lists statistics about the supposed efficacy of some of their products based on clinical trials. The problem is the claims are entirely uncited. The brand is just stating statistics claiming their products work without linking to the studies proving their products work. \u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe find this practice to be deceptive and misleading. Claims of clinical efficacy without proof are unacceptable in our opinion. You cannot claim your product is proven to work and highlight stats without linking to the research so that consumers and researchers can evaluate for themselves.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eUsually at the very least a skincare brand will link out to some research funded by a for-profit research firm. Even if this research is not published in any legitimate scientific journals, it still allows consumers to review the study themselves to come to a conclusion. But these efficacy claims entirely without citation made by Zo Skin Health are not something we come across often, and we consider this a serious red flag.\u003cbr\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eZo Skin Health User Reviews\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eZo Skin Health is sold on Amazon as well as their website, which provides a way to assess user reviews. We tend to believe that Amazon reviews are more legitimate on average than reviews on company websites, as they’re more difficult to game.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe Exfoliating Polish we reviewed at the outset of this article has relatively positive reviews on Amazon. It scores a 4.8 out of 5 stars, with 554 overall reviews. This is one of the highest reviews we’ve seen of products we’ve analyzed.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe top positive review of the product from a verified purchaser comes from an anonymous Amazon Custome\u003c\/span\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003er who claims the product has had an anti-aging effect:\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cb\u003e“My aesthetician introduced me to the product and naturally when I ran out I turned Amazon to re-order. My complexion is much clearer dark spots have faded and my skin tone is smoother. I highly recommend this product!”\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe top negative review from a verified purchaser is written by a user named “Eva” who claims that the product is illegitimate and not from the real manufacturer:\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cb\u003e“I have used Z products and usually I buy it from my dermatologist, however, this time I ordered from Amazon seller. The product is diluted not 100% the real product, the box is Z obagi but the first impression when you see the box you would know that it was used and diluted.”\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe product receives a B grade \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.fakespot.com\/product\/zo-skin-health-exfoliating-polish-formerly-offects-exfoliating-polish\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003efrom FakeSpot\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e which is a good sign that the majority of the reviews are legitimate. FakeSpot is a software tool that detects manipulation of Amazon reviews.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eYouTube Unsponsored Review\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOne of the most popular reviews of Zo Skin Health is published by a channel called “Sydney Nicole.” She claims the review is unsponsored. She provides before-and-after videos and explains whether or not she believes the brand is worth the money:\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003ciframe width=\"560\" height=\"315\" src=\"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/sp1vsFJSl50\" title=\"YouTube video player\" frameborder=\"0\" allow=\"accelerometer; autoplay; clipboard-write; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture\" allowfullscreen=\"\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eZo Skin Health Pros and Cons\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHere’s our take on the pros and cons of this brand generally:\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e\u003cspan style=\"text-decoration: underline;\"\u003ePros:\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\n\u003cul\u003e\n\u003cli style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eSome effective ingredients\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003cli style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eGrowth Factor Serum is well-formulated for efficacy\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003cli style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003ePositive user reviews\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003c\/ul\u003e\n\u003ch3\u003e\u003cspan style=\"text-decoration: underline;\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eCons:\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\n\u003cul\u003e\n\u003cli style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eContains fragrance\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003cli style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOne best-seller contains artificial dye\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003cli style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eRelatively expensive\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003cli style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eClaims of clinical efficacy without proof\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003c\/ul\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eConclusion\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe do not believe Zo Skin Health products are worth their relatively high price, and we recommend that consumers avoid this brand. For consumers who are set on purchasing from this brand, we believe that the Growth Factor Serum is a better option than the Exfoliating Polish because it appears to have more clinically-backed ingredients and is free of artificial dye.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe disagree with Zo Skin Health’s practice of making clinical claims of efficacy without citing those claims, and we would urge the brand to at least link to the research backing those claims.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eUsers appear to be happy with their purchases from the brand, so that’s one positive for interested consumers.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e","blog_id":49281925193,"author":"Calloway Cook","user_id":26601750601,"published_at":"2022-06-24T23:25:49-04:00","updated_at":"2022-06-25T19:38:13-04:00","summary_html":"We review the ingredients in skincare brand Zo Skin Health's most popular products based on published medical studies to determine if we believe they're likely to be effective for anti-aging. We highlight real user reviews of the brand and explain an issue we have with their claims of clinical efficacy.","template_suffix":"","handle":"zo-skin-health-review","tags":"_related:anti-aging, _related:skincare"}

Zo Skin Health Review: Are The Formulations Worth The Price?

Zo Skin Health Review: Are The Formulations Worth The Price?


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Read our Editorial Guidelines to learn more about what makes our site the premier resource for online health information.


Read our Editorial Guidelines to learn more about what makes our site the premier resource for online health information.

Zo Skin Health is a skincare brand that’s been highly-lauded by reviewers. Their products have won awards from Cosmopolitan, Reader’s Digest and Good Housekeeping. The brand suggests that their products have an anti-aging effect, and that they may shield the body from signs of aging in a proactive capacity.

In this article we’ll review the ingredients in Zo Skin Health’s best-selling products based on published medical research to determine if we believe they’re properly formulated for anti-aging effect. We’ll highlight reviews from real users and suggest some alternatives we believe may be superior.

Zo Skin Health Exfoliating Polish Review

Zo Skin Health Exfoliating Polish ingredients

One of Zo Skin Health’s most popular products is an exfoliating polish. The brand claims that the magnesium oxide crystals in the formulation “slough away dead skin cells” which has the effect of “leaving skin instantly soft and smooth.” The brand does not cite these claims, and we cannot find any medical research suggesting that topical magnesium oxide has any beneficial dermatological effects.

One of the first active ingredients in Zo Skin Health Exfoliating Polish is sodium bicarbonate, and we do not understand this inclusion in a skincare formulation. The only medical trial we could find on topical sodium bicarbonate found the ingredient ineffective at improving symptoms of psoriasis.

One potentially effective ingredient is Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Leaf Oil. This essential oil may be effective at improving damaged skin. A medical review on tea tree oil for dermatological conditions found that early research proved this botanical compound effective at treating acne and skin lesions due to its antibacterial effect.

Our only issue with this ingredient listing on Zo Skin Health’s site is that the concentration isn’t listed. Tea tree oil, like most essential oils, is effective in a narrow range of concentrations and may be damaging to skin at too high of a concentration. For this reason cosmetics manufacturers should always list the concentration of essential oils.

Glycerin is an effective and common active ingredient in this formulation which is proven to positively impact skin hydration and skin barrier function.

This product contains an interesting compound called Tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate which is an ester of Vitamin C. Zo Skin Health claims this ingredient “helps to brighten skin” however we would disagree with this assessment. 

A medical review of this ingredient published in 2021 in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences suggested that this compound was likely ineffective for improving skin quality unless another stabilizing compound was included in the formulation (which Zo Skin Health Exfoliating Polish doesn’t have): “[Tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate] may itself lack stability within the dermal microenvironment. This study showed that [tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate] has limited oxygen radical absorbance capacity and undergoes rapid degradation when exposed to singlet oxygen…This degradation, however, could be prevented by the addition of acetyl zingerone.”

This serum also has several ingredients that we recommend consumers avoid for health reasons. Fragrance provides no dermatological benefits and may be unsafe. As we discussed at length in our recent review of Nexxus Shampoo, another personal care product containing fragrance, this ingredient may be harmful to human health based on medical research.

This formulation also contains an artificial dye Green 5 which we rarely have seen in skincare products. We would strongly recommend that consumers avoid putting products with artificial dye on their face. Artificial dyes can be absorbed through skin according to medical research, and may be harmful to human health. The study authors of the linked research review state the following: “The consuming public is largely unaware of the perilous truth behind the deceptive allure of artificial color.”

Overall we find this to be a poor formulation and definitely worse than the majority of skincare products we’ve reviewed. We cannot identify one single active ingredient with a documented anti-aging effect, and the product contains several ingredients we would recommend avoiding for health reasons.

There are a few ingredients which may benefit skin health in this product, but for a price of $68 for 2.3 ounces (oz) we would expect a much better formulation.

Zo Skin Health Growth Factor Serum 

Zo Skin Health Growth Factor Serum ingredients

Growth Factor Serum is the second-most-reviewed product on Zo Skin Health’s site, with 701 reviews. It’s also on their best-seller list. The brand claims that this product can reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

This formulation contains a novel compound called hydrolyzed sericin which is an effective anti-aging ingredient. A recent medical review documented the cosmetic benefits of this compound. It has anti-wrinkle effects when applied topically, and can also cause an increase in skin hydration and elasticity.

Another efficacious ingredient in this serum is dipeptide diaminobutyroyl benzylamide diacetate. This compound was studied in a formulation used in a clinical trial for its effects on facial wrinkles and demonstrated positive effects. 86% of patients reported reduced wrinkles around the eyes after 3 months of treatment with this ingredient, and 71% of patients reported reduced wrinkles around the upper lip.

The study authors also reported clinical improvements in wrinkles which matched those reported by the participants. We cannot assign these results to the dipeptide ingredient alone, but it’s still promising early research.

Tocopherol is included in this formulation, and it’s a good choice for a topical serum because of its photoprotective effects. As referenced in our Beautycounter reviews article, this ingredient has significant medical backing for its ability to reduce the damaging effects of UV rays on skin.

Unfortunately, like the Exfoliating Polish, this product contains fragrance. The serum does not contain any artificial dyes which makes it a safer choice than the previous product reviewed in our opinion.

We do believe that this formulation is likely to be effective for anti-aging because it has multiple ingredients proven in legitimate medical studies to be effective for that outcome.

Questionable Efficacy Claims

Zo Skin Health has a page on their site called “Clinical Proof.” It lists statistics about the supposed efficacy of some of their products based on clinical trials. The problem is the claims are entirely uncited. The brand is just stating statistics claiming their products work without linking to the studies proving their products work. 

We find this practice to be deceptive and misleading. Claims of clinical efficacy without proof are unacceptable in our opinion. You cannot claim your product is proven to work and highlight stats without linking to the research so that consumers and researchers can evaluate for themselves.

Usually at the very least a skincare brand will link out to some research funded by a for-profit research firm. Even if this research is not published in any legitimate scientific journals, it still allows consumers to review the study themselves to come to a conclusion. But these efficacy claims entirely without citation made by Zo Skin Health are not something we come across often, and we consider this a serious red flag.

Zo Skin Health User Reviews

Zo Skin Health is sold on Amazon as well as their website, which provides a way to assess user reviews. We tend to believe that Amazon reviews are more legitimate on average than reviews on company websites, as they’re more difficult to game.

The Exfoliating Polish we reviewed at the outset of this article has relatively positive reviews on Amazon. It scores a 4.8 out of 5 stars, with 554 overall reviews. This is one of the highest reviews we’ve seen of products we’ve analyzed.

The top positive review of the product from a verified purchaser comes from an anonymous Amazon Customer who claims the product has had an anti-aging effect:

“My aesthetician introduced me to the product and naturally when I ran out I turned Amazon to re-order. My complexion is much clearer dark spots have faded and my skin tone is smoother. I highly recommend this product!”

The top negative review from a verified purchaser is written by a user named “Eva” who claims that the product is illegitimate and not from the real manufacturer:

“I have used Z products and usually I buy it from my dermatologist, however, this time I ordered from Amazon seller. The product is diluted not 100% the real product, the box is Z obagi but the first impression when you see the box you would know that it was used and diluted.”

The product receives a B grade from FakeSpot which is a good sign that the majority of the reviews are legitimate. FakeSpot is a software tool that detects manipulation of Amazon reviews.

YouTube Unsponsored Review

One of the most popular reviews of Zo Skin Health is published by a channel called “Sydney Nicole.” She claims the review is unsponsored. She provides before-and-after videos and explains whether or not she believes the brand is worth the money:

Zo Skin Health Pros and Cons

Here’s our take on the pros and cons of this brand generally:

Pros:

  • Some effective ingredients
  • Growth Factor Serum is well-formulated for efficacy
  • Positive user reviews

Cons:

  • Contains fragrance
  • One best-seller contains artificial dye
  • Relatively expensive
  • Claims of clinical efficacy without proof
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Conclusion

We do not believe Zo Skin Health products are worth their relatively high price, and we recommend that consumers avoid this brand. For consumers who are set on purchasing from this brand, we believe that the Growth Factor Serum is a better option than the Exfoliating Polish because it appears to have more clinically-backed ingredients and is free of artificial dye.

We disagree with Zo Skin Health’s practice of making clinical claims of efficacy without citing those claims, and we would urge the brand to at least link to the research backing those claims.

Users appear to be happy with their purchases from the brand, so that’s one positive for interested consumers.





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