(Skin) Creaming In The Genes. StriVectin and More Reviews!

A few posts back, I wrote about the StriVectin sample I received at the High End Department Store where I work.  Well, over two weeks later I’m still using it, and, as promised, I’m reviewing.

StriVectin is a cream that has been found to reduce, and in some cases, erase stretch marks.  StriVectin also claims to reduce and/or erase wrinkles.

I’m going to be perfectly clear on this.  I gave birth to three children.  My first born was a ten-pounder.  The other two were in the eight-pound range.  I also breast fed each child for three years.  My children are three years apart.  Those numbers equal nine years straight of breast feeding.

Between the belly and the titties, my stretch marks should have been of epic proportions.


My belly was stretched like this at five months! You should have seen it by nine!

Alas.  Although my bodily milk bottles are saggy and I need heavy padding to lift them back up, if I did have any unsightly stretch marks, they were erased by Mother Nature.


This would ALMOST be me, except I had only one little piggy hanging off me at a time–for a long time!

And…my belly is jelly. That is because I’m a lazy old slob who doesn’t do sit ups—or crunches as they are now called.  I also eat what I shouldn’t.  My gut sticks out over my bikini panties. There may be a bit of “tumulite” (the tummy equivalent of cellulite), but there are no stretch marks. And trust me, my gut was stretched to the limit with my first child.


OK. So my belly looks like this blobfish–but there’s no stretch marks!

It’s in the genes. Good genetics saved me from permanent stretch marks. But those genes did NOT save me from wrinkles!!!!

Edina stretch marks

So do my mine. But I iron them out.  Luckily genetics didn’t leave my body with stretch marks! Unfortunately I cannot iron my wrinkles!

But, I’m going to tell you how I really feel about StriVectin and a couple of other products; and I am gearing these reviews to the older ladies of the blogosphere and beyond!


Here’s the generous sample size of StriVectin. I still haven’t finished this tube yet!

StriVectin a Thicker cream

….and it has a thicker consistency than some other creams that I use.

I’ve been using StriVectin twice a day.  I don’t notice any erased wrinkles. They are still on my face and aren’t going away any time soon.

forehead wrinkles

Don’t mind the white roots. I missed a spot. But look. I have those frowny forehead lines. StriVectin did not soften them in any way at all.

I’m bewildered by many reviews of this product because there are incredibly positive comments made by women who have been using this cream. Oh. Those reviews are written by younger women whose ripples and wrinkles haven’t fully surfaced yet! The many ingredients of StriVectin did not work to erase my wrinkles!

However, I do notice an improvement in the texture of my skin.  It is slightly smoother.  It’s almost as though I had a decent share of exfoliation.  The wrinkles are there but at least the rest of my face is a bit smoother. In addition, I also notice a bit of a more evened-out skin tone. This product is not hydrating but it doesn’t dry my skin either.  I’m on the fence.

Wrinkles are there but the skin is smoother

Closeup of my 61 year old wrinkly face. Nothing changed.  I did notice that my skin felt smoother though.

Anyway, would I actually purchase more StriVectin?  No.  Especially after glancing at my latest pay stub from “High End Department Store”.

55 hours in 15 days and my enormous pay was $396.00. That comes out to about $7.20 per hour. I have gone from $25.00 an hour to $7.20.  That is all I’m worth.  A cheap bottle of wine is worth more than I am!

There is a possibility that if I was making the salary that I used to make, I would purchase this, but I truthfully don’t know. I think there are other products on the market that do the same job for a lot less money. If you are an older woman on a tight budget or a fixed income, StriVectin comes at a high cost.

In researching skin care creams, I came across Skin Actives Scientific. Skin Actives is a company that sells various skincare “ingredients” for Do-It-Yourselfers. (SA also sells ready-made products.) I was intrigued because there were many comparisons to one of the kits that Skin Actives sells as being a DIY dupe for Crème de La Mer.  Crème de La Mer is wayyyyyyyy out of my price range.  At $85.00 for 0.05 ounces—I can’t even…


Creme De La Mer.  Off the charts of my affordability….

And so I bought the “Formulation for Beginners” kit. At the price point of $29.50, this was more within my affordability range.

I received the kit three days after ordering. The shipping was quick.  The kit was neatly packaged.

Kit a bag of fun

My kit was neatly packaged in this bag that was placed in a small box. All products appeared to be well-sterilized too!

It contained:

Kit contents

Above was my little check list.  The “Pipettes” are thin plastic tubes for sucking up the liquid–like little turkey basters!

Kit Canvas Base Cream

I received this Canvas Base Cream. A white non-scented cream base.  Hyaluronic Acid is supposed to be good in reducing fine lines. We’ll see!

Kit Shea Mousse and Sea Kelp

Smaller jars of Shea Mousse and Sea Kelp Coral were also included.  I have no idea what Astaxanthin is– a natural dye which, I’m assuming is giving this Sea Kelp it’s “Coral”  Fucoxanthin is another natural colorant, but with health benefits. 

The Shea Mousse, pictured on the left has the consistency of whipped butter while the sea kelp resembles marmalade (why does everything have to remind me of food?)

Kit Sea Kelp customization kit

In this little bag was the Antioxidant Booster and the fragrances.  

Kit Spatulas and Droppers

The Pipettes and Spatulas.  I have a spare eye dropper from an old serum and I’ll use that in the future rather than the pipettes..they were a bit clumsy for me.

Kit empty jar and lid

The empty jar to house my new DIY skin creme!

I mixed a bit of this and added droplets of a bit of that and felt like a beauty scientist!  I did leave out the fragrance. But, I’ll tell you, the fragrances smelled pretty darn good!

Kit cream base

I added the proper measurement of the base cream…

Kit mixing sea kelp into base

..then added the Sea Kelp….

Kit mixing it up

…the Shea Mousse and the Antioxidant Booster and mixed, mixed, mixed!

Can I just tell you that the consistency of my little mixture of cream is nice. Not too thick and not too runny.

The cream glides on nicely and it is incredibly hydrating.  Incredibly hydrating!!!! I’ve actually forgone primer a couple of times after applying this and my makeup stays put. When I apply the cream, it is cold and I can feel the slightest tingle. But I am delighted and amazed at how hydrating this is!

My wrinkles are still sticking around.

But the skin is being hydrated.  And with hydration comes plumping up! That’s important.  And at a price point of $29.50 and change, I’ll have enough of the ingredients to last me about a year (maybe more—maybe less).

I can see this kit as being a repurchase! And, I would like to eventually purchase the serum kit. It’s less expensive than many of the serums on the market!

Lastly, and I’m so torn about this product–Rodan & Fields Essentials Foaming Sunless Tan.  At $24.00 this is expensive compared to the price I normally spend on fake tanners  And at another ten bucks for shipping, the price becomes downright ridiculous. (Luckily, Bonaparte’s daughter sells Rodan & Fields so I didn’t have to pay for the shipping.)

fake tan

This is expensive–especially with a $10.00 shipping charge!

I’m torn because the color is pretty decent—especially after a couple of “coats”, or applications.  The tan is on the lighter side but isn’t orange.  It also dries quickly, which is a plus.

Tan 2

I applied the Rodan & Fields earlier this morning. Don’t pay attention to the nicks and bruises on my legs.  It is common knowledge that I cut my legs every time I shave them and I walk into things so I bruise. But…the one coat application leaves only a light color that needs to be reapplied for the tan you want! As the color builds up, it gives a natural looking tan.

But, the product comes out of the can white in color.  It’s a bit hard to see where you apply once the white mousse dissipates so this can be spotty if you don’t watch out (or pay attention like someone we all know)!


Yeah.  When I apply fake tan I always miss a few spots and look a little uneven. Just like Edina Monsoon!  If  my daughter Oona did this I could call her Oona Monsoona!

It also leaves a drying effect.  My take on perusing the “Essentials” section of R & F’s website is that you apply the daily moisturizer after applying the sunless tanner so that your skin is hydrated.  (Or perhaps you moisturize first?)

That bothers me.  Seriously. I despise that “use this but you have to buy that too” sort of shill.  It seems that all the Essentials products are tied together.  And that equals some serious spending.

If your skin has a tendency to be on the drier side and you want a sunless tanner, my suggestion is to go with the old faithful Jergens Natural Glow.  The scent may be a bit funky but wears down and your legs will be nice and moisturized while acquiring some naturally fake color!  One tube will last all summer!


..and I can bet this will be a winner for 2016 as well!

Will I repurchase the Rodan & Fields Foaming Sunless Tan?  No.  I’ll use either Tan Towels or Jergens.


I feel like such a winner because my two favorite tanning products are so highly regarded!  Tan Towel is another favorite!

But, I think if the price point of $24.00 plus an additional $10.00 for shipping for 4.2 fl. Oz of product doesn’t put a dent in your purse strings, it’s worth it.

Of all three reviews, I have the most hope for Skin Actives.  Their website is very interesting to say the least and I don’t quite know if they are marketing geniuses or if the company is just an honest-to-goodness one with great intentions.

Wrinkles are there natural light

I’m happy so far with the hydrating results from Skin Actives. I think I’ll start using my DIY cream for my turkey neck! In an effort to be transparent, I have no foundation or primer on. I’m wearing brow filler, mascara, blush and chapstick.  My skin is the result of  my DIY Skin Actives cream and earlier when I woke up, StriVectin.

And my point is that, once again, expensive isn’t always the way to go.  We have to work within our budgets and can still manage to look like a million bucks on a limited budget!

I have no relevant song for today but when I was running errands I was listing to one of my favorite CD’s, “The Best of Bobby Darin” and the great song “Clementine”. It’s so cool!


About Catherine

Far from perfect, but enjoying life as a non-perfect and flawed individual at 60 years young. I'm still wondering what I'll be when I grow up! The characters in my life's screenplay include my better half. He is a refined Frenchman who grew up in Paris and summered in St. Tropez. I grew up in Long Island and summered in Long Island. I am not refined. My three grown children are also a big part of my life. For their sake, they happily live where their careers have taken them! But I can still mother them from a distance! I write about the mundane. I write about deeply shallow issues. But whatever I write or muse about--it'll always be a bit on the humorous and positive side! It's all good!
This entry was posted in Ageing, Beauty, Beauty for Older Women, DIY Skin care, Rodan & Fields, Skin Actives Scientific, StriVectin and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

19 Responses to (Skin) Creaming In The Genes. StriVectin and More Reviews!

  1. Christine says:

    Do you think the beginner kit would work for combination skin? I’m 59 and still have an occasional breakout along with fine lines! Oh joy!


    • Catherine says:

      Hi Christine! Honestly, I think that it would work. Their website is so chock-full of information that you can “check” off what you are looking for and they will let you know what would work for you. I get zits on my chin every now and then–but the big painful ones. And so far, I’ve had no issues! Best of luck to you. Let me know if you end up ordering from them. Would love to hear how it worked for you! XOXOXOXO!

  2. Margaret says:

    Thanks for all the great info here, I think I’ll try Skin Actives when I run out of the Cetaphil moisturizer I’m using now. Your skin looks very milky/creamy and bright in the last pic, beautiful! Omg that blob fish is starting to look like Leona Helmsley to me, lol.

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Margaret! Definitely give Skin Actives a try. Yeah. I think my skin is looking better with the Skin Actives. I like the StriVectin’s ability for smoothness but at the price, the SA kit is faring much better. I’m a happy camper! Oh..that blobfish DOES look like Mrs. Helmsley!! XOXOXOXO!

  3. Nancy says:

    Have never tried tan towels…which ones do you recommend?

  4. What I really liked about this post, Catherine, is that it was so honest. I’m sure many women will find this much more helpful than the countless product reviews on the Internet in which the writer unhelpfully claims that whatever it is they happen to be looking at that week happens to be the best X, Y or Z they have ever seen.

    • Catherine says:

      Thanks Bun. Your comment means a lot to me. I’m always trying to be transparent in any product I write about. Whether it works for me or not, I do my best to be honest. Let’s face it. All these potions advertise falsely. NONE of them place older women with wrinkles in their ads. All the ads display younger women and photoshopped ones at that! I keep it real! XOXOXOX. Thanks again!

  5. suzyjbarker says:

    Lots of useful info here Catherine – thank you

  6. Thank you for this, I am definitely going to try StriVectrin for my belly stretch marks!

  7. Terri Black says:

    I do formulate some skin care products. I would like to hear more about your DIY products.

  8. spearfruit says:

    Great and honest post Catherine – always enjoy reading these! Hope your day is going well dear! 🙂

  9. julietC says:

    Looking fabulous, I love your honesty – and the fact that you’ve created a wee family of like minded and rather brilliant women

  10. Julia says:

    New follower. I LUV ur make up reviews. I’m going 2 try the jerseys self tanner. First pic I’ve seen of Bonaparte. He is handsome and suave looking!😎

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Julia! Welcome aboard to the neighborhood! I’m glad to have you as a friend! Oh. I know. I know. Bonaparte is incredibly suave and handsome. And I’m lucky because he appreciates a curvy woman! XOXOXOXOXO!!!!!

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