Kanapa Luminous Facial Serum is a paraben free, all-natural skin care product manufactured in New Zealand by a company called XtendLife. According to the manufacturer, regular use of this facial serum can firm and brighten your skin, and also reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Of course, many skin care manufacturers make similar claims about their products, and in the end, consumers like you and I are left feeling disappointed. Is this serum really any different?
Before I get started, I think I should first say a few words about XtendLife. I have written reviews about some of their other products, and in those reviews, I provided a brief description of the company, but not everyone who reads this review will have read any of those reviews. In my opinion, I think that it adds value to a review if the author provides some basic information about the company that manufactures the product which is being reviewed. Do not worry, I will keep this as brief as possible.
About the Manufacturer
XtendLife was set up in 2000, but their first products, which were dietary supplements, only became available for the first time in 2001. After enjoying a successful beginning with their bio-available health supplements, the company began developing a range of skin care products. Their goal was to produce premium quality skin care products using only natural ingredients.
The ingredients that were finally chosen were chosen based on research-led data, and then formulated into a number of different creams, lotions and serums. The company also wanted their products to include anti-aging qualities, and this led to the development of a unique blend of ingredients. They called this blend of ingredients their Kanapa™ blend, and so the Kanapa™ range of products was born.
Before making any claims about the blend’s anti-aging qualities, the company first wanted to have it independently evaluated. An independent clinical trial was carried out, and the results showed that the Kanapa™ blend can indeed reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Despite the findings of the clinical trial, I think it is important that people realize that there are no guarantees. Skin types vary, and results will inevitably vary as well from one person to the next.
Paraben Free Skin Care
Given that I have done quite a bit of research relating to the Kanapa™ range of products, I can confidently tell you that the Kanapa Luminous Facial Serum is 100% paraben free. In fact, all Kanapa products are 100% paraben free.
In more recent times, consumers have started becoming increasingly savvy regarding what all goes into the creams and lotions that they rub into their skin day in and day out, and this has resulted in a lot of people becoming highly suspicious of parabens and their prevalence in skin care products. I happen to be one of those people by the way.
While XtendLife skin care products have always been paraben free, the same cannot be said for many other skin care products. To give credit where it is due, I should add that many manufacturers have stopped adding parabens to their products, while many others are in the process of doing so. By now, you may be wondering what all the fuss is about, so let us take a brief look at what parabens actually are, and then we will take a closer look at Kanapa™ Luminous Facial Serum.
Parabens – Good for Manufacturers, but Bad News for Consumers
The term “parabens” refers to a specific group of man-made chemicals. They are abundant, and more importantly, they are dirt cheap. This is obviously great news for skin care manufacturers who are looking to maximize their profits, but unfortunately, parabens are not such great news for you and me. They are widely used as preservatives in many products, including pharmaceuticals, foods, beverages, and of course, cosmetics.
In the not too distant past, it was nearly impossible to find paraben free cosmetics, but as I have mentioned, public demand for paraben free products has been growing rapidly in more recent times. Despite a steady decline in the use of parabens, they are still found in countless products. The most commonly used parabens are:
In 1984, the CIR (Cosmetic Ingredient Review) which represents the cosmetics industry concluded that parabens can safely be used in cosmetic and skin care products. Then, in 2006, the CIR, together with the FDA, decided that the 1984 conclusion did not require any changes. In other words, manufacturers were given the green light to continue adding these chemicals to their products.
According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, a 2005/2006 study revealed that parabens were present in nearly all urine samples that were collected from the more than 2,500 participants that took part in the study. The concentration of parabens in urine samples was also considerably higher in the samples that were collected from adult females than in the samples that were collected from adult males. Widespread use of cosmetics and skin care products among women are thought to be responsible for this.
Parabens can enter our bodies in various ways. They can enter orally when we eat or drink foods and beverages that contain parabens, or when we take medication that contains parabens. They can also enter our bodies via our skin when we use skin care products that contain parabens.
The Paraben Dilemma
Most tests which have been carried out to determine the safety of parabens, have only looked at, and tested one particular type of paraben, used in one particular type of product. However, most of us are exposed to several different parabens on a daily basis, and nobody really understands what the cumulative effects might be.
The American Cancer Society has in the past pointed to a study which found parabens present in the breast tissue of patients that had breast cancer. However, the study was not able to determine if the parabens had actually caused breast cancer. By the way, animal experiments have also shown that parabens interfere with the endocrine system.
Although it has been quite a slow process, a number of parabens are now banned in European Union countries. These include:
Do you really want to expose yourself to more parabens than you already do? My personal advice would be for you to always buy paraben free cosmetics and other paraben free skin care products. And, if you are a woman who likes using lipstick, then I would definitely recommend that you also stick to paraben free lipstick for obvious reasons.
Someone recently asked me, what are parabens in shampoo? Yes, they are even in many brands of shampoo. Once again, they have powerful antibacterial and antifungal properties, and are therefore added to shampoos to serve as preservatives. Anyway, I think I have already spent too much time talking about parabens, so let’s go ahead and take a closer look at the Kanapa™ Luminous Facial Serum.
Kanapa™ Luminous Facial Serum
As I have stated earlier, Kanapa Luminous Facial Serum is a paraben free facial serum made entirely from natural ingredients. As is to be expected, the manufacturer is not likely to share the exact recipe with anyone, but they have revealed some of the core ingredients that are used in this serum. These include:
Swertia Chirata Extract (SWT-7 H)
Known within the skin care industry as SWT-7 H, this is a finely tweaked extract obtained from the leaves of a herb known as swertia chirata. The extract has been shown to support skin cell regeneration, and in so doing, it helps to thicken and strengthen the outer layers of our skin known as the epidermis. This in turn helps to make lines and wrinkles less visible.
Easyliance does not physically reduce lines and wrinkles, but it helps to firm up skin and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. This ingredient is made from an extract obtained from acacia gum and a bio-polymer obtained from sunflowers.
Ascorbic Acid 2-Glucoside (AA2G™)
AA2G™ is essentially a modified form of vitamin-C which is created by binding ascorbic acid and glucose together. It is a potent antioxidant which supports the skin’s natural ability to combat free radicals. Vitamin-C is rich in antioxidants, but the way in which this type is made, makes it easier for the antioxidants in the vitamin-C to reach the skin cells.
Studies have shown that AA2G™ can support and encourage normalized melanin production, and that it has the potential to lighten and reduce the appearance of dark skin spots, such as those caused by photo aging. It is also believed to support the natural function of collagen in our skin, which in turn improves elasticity and causes the skin to appear tighter.
AA2G™ is not manufactured by the company that makes Kanapa™ Luminous Facial Serum. Instead, it is manufactured by Hayashibara, a Japanese company in Okayama, and one which has been around since 1883. As is to be expected, the Ascorbic Acid 2-Glucoside used in Kanapa™ Luminous Facial Serum is 100% paraben free as well.
Hydrolysed hyaluronic acid (Primalhyal 50)
Primalhyal 50 is a type of hyaluronic acid, but a more lightweight version of regular hyaluronic acid. It is derived from wheat and is mostly used in anti-aging and anti-wrinkle skin care products. The molecular structure of Primalhyal 50 allows it to penetrate cells underneath the skin surface to provide moisture. This can give the skin a plumper appearance which can diminish the visual appearance of lines and wrinkles, thereby producing a more youthful appearance.
Because Primalhyal 50 is able to penetrate the skin surface, it can also enhance the efficiency of other ingredients which are used in Kanapa Luminous Facial Serum. All the Primalhyal 50 that is used in the Kanapa range of products is produced from sustainable locally produced wheat.
Brightenyl® is produced by a company called Givaudan, and it is described as being a new generation skin tone and skin color modulator. In recent years, it has been discovered that the outermost layer of our skin is covered by a layer of bacteria. Brightenyl® only becomes activated once it comes into this outermost layer.
Brightenyl® is made from natural ingredients and is therefore also paraben free. It is used almost exclusively in skin whitening products, skin tone enhancers, and anti-pigmentation serums. The manufacturer’s website highlights the following qualities:
- Its ability to block the melanogenesis process allows it to promote an even skin tone.
- It protects skin from environmental stress and helps to prevent inflammation.
- It can reduce the size of pores by up to 65% in a period of 56 days.
- It is 4 times more potent than regular vitamin-C.
- It is 60 times more potent than kojic acid.
Okay, I have talked about the company that manufactures Kanapa Luminous Facial Serum; I have talked about parabens, and I have discussed some of the core ingredients which are used in this facial serum, so now it is time for us to take a quick look at some of the pros and cons. Some of them will be based on my own personal experience, while others are based only on my personal opinion after doing the research which I have done:
- Kanapa™ Luminous Facial Serum is paraben free and contains no other chemicals either.
- I have found it to be an exceptionally good moisturizer.
- In my opinion, it does not actually get rid of lines and wrinkles, but it does make them less visible. I put this down to the way in which the serum tends to plump up the skin.
- I love the scent of this serum, and the fact that the scent is from a natural source and is also very mild.
I cannot really think of any cons because I have been very happy with this facial serum, and also with the service which I have enjoyed when placing orders. If I were forced to mention one con, then it would probably be the price. I am willing to put up with the price, but at nearly $50 for a 15ml tube, I cannot help thinking that it is a little pricey.
Well, that brings me to the end of my Kanapa Luminous Facial Serum review. If you had questions regarding this serum, I hope that you have found some answers while reading through this review. I also hope that you found the section about parabens informative and helpful.
I regularly write and post reviews on my site, so be sure to visit again soon, and thanks so much for reading.