Describe the brand in three words.
Doctor. USA. Hi-tech.

Who is it for? Suggested skin type and age?
All ages, but older skins will notice the benefits sooner and get a more noticeable result (as with most product to be fair).

What’s in it?
Water/Aqua/Eau, Glycerin, Propanediol, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Niacinamide, Pentylene Glycol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Alcohol Denat., 1,2-Hexanediol, Cannabis Sativa Seed Oil, Sodium Hyaluronate, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, Caffeine, Plankton Extract, Tephrosia Purpurea Seed Extract, Sigesbeckia Orientalis Extract, Rosa Damascena Flower Extract, Spilanthes Acmella Flower Extract, Indigofera Tinctoria Leaf Extract, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Tocopherol, Urea, Yeast Amino Acids, Trehalose, Inositol, Taurine, Betaine, Caprylyl Glycol, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Carrageenan, Algin, PEG/PPG-17/6 Copolymer, Xanthan Gum, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-di-t-butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Hydroxyethylpiperazine Ethane Sulfonic Acid, Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, Synthetic Fluorphlogopite, Phenoxyethanol, Mica, Tin Oxide, Iron Oxides(CI 77491), Titanium Dioxide(CI 77891), Fragrance (Parfum), Linalool, Citronellol

How does it smell?
Strangely it doesn’t, but it is listed as containing a small amount of fragrance so I imagine that was added merely to mask the smell of the raw ingredients, as opposed to bring a stronger ‘sensorial’ experience.

Suitable for pregnancy/breastfeeding?


Air-tight, pump dispenser, two separate sections.
This is dual-packaging, the oil-based spheres are only mixed with the water-based gel when you dispense the product and not before, meaning Murad can eliminate traditional ‘binders’ from the formula and allow for a more potent, concentrated formula with a higher delivery of actives with each use.

Cruelty-free status?
Cruelty-free. Not sold in China, which is frankly admirable given their longevity. Most brands have caved by now.

How do you use it?
Use AM and PM over face and eyes.

Best for winter or summer?

Will you visibly ‘see’ results or does it work behind the scenes?
Both. The immediate gratification of this product should be seen to be believed. If you are on the duller end of the scale, or stressed, you’ll see the effect immediately through the light oil content and the light reflective ingredients. It gives a mild rose gold look on application but that immediately dissipates into just a great ‘glow’. The active ingredients obviously work behind the scenes, making this a nice 2 in 1.

What’s it all about?
“Cultural Stress™ is the unnecessary man-made stress we put on ourselves in our attempt to live up to everyone’s expectations. Our hyper-connected, fast-paced society triggers a constant flood of damaging stress hormones, like cortisol, that fatigue our bodies and could show in our skin as dehydration, sallowness, roughness and deep expression lines. The best way to manage stress is through balance, and I formulated Revitalixir Recovery Serum for face and eyes with a balancing blend of relaxing and reviving extracts to help manage the visible effects of stress, minimise skin fatigue and renew vibrancy in an instant and over time.” – Howard Murad, M.D., FAAD

Back in 2003, when Dr Murad first diagnosed ‘cultural stress’, he was way ahead of his time. Recent research suggests that a stressful lifestyle can make you look up to 3.5 years older. Personally, I sense that figure is higher if you are older.
This serum is designed to target the visible and invisible signs of cultural stress on both the eyes and the face.

What’s good about it?
Firstly, it’s from Dr Murad, who if you have not been made aware of, is an absolute ledge. Watch this video first, and then come back:

This product is in the ‘Treat’ category, so for Murad obsessives it’s No. 2 in your routine.

I think this is my favourite Murad serum to date. It was made for my face and my current ‘life stresses’, of which there are many.
It’s loaded with niacinamide, which on its own is made to help strengthen a weakened skin, improve enlarged pores, uneven skin tone and fine lines. Score.
Add in to that the neuropeptide acetyl hexapeptide-8 and cannabis sativa seed (hemp) oil, and you can see the goal of this serum, and why younger people don’t yet need this. Hemp oil is great for all skins, including both acneic and eczemic, it’s not contraindicated to either. (It’s cold pressed from the seed, as opposed to CBD Hemp oil, which involves the whole plant.)
Caffeine invigorates and helps with puffiness and the under-eye area.
Although the immediate effect is one of glow and hydration, after a couple of minutes, it settles onto the skin and you see the smoothing effect in action. The effect stays. This isn’t a flash in the pan serum that floods the skin with hyaluronic acid but then dissipates leaving you needing the moisturiser on top. You could easily use this on its own if you are oily or combination.

What’s not so good about it?
Nothing. I’d like a super-sized bottle though. Thanks.

Would I purchase/repurchase?
Yes. It’s new to me, but I sense it’s a ‘lifer’.

You need this if:
You have any of the following:
signs of stress on your face

You don’t need this if:
You are at the beginning of your skincare ‘life’ (young)
You’re a 20-something that lives in the gym, doesn’t drink or smoke

Works well with/suggested combinations/routine?
Use under your favourite moisturiser. Depending on your needs, this works perfectly alongside the Retinol Youth series. Again, not for you if you’re 20, but if you are closer to and above 30, crack on. In Murad you use the Retinol at night, so the Revitalixir would be your AM, and it can go on top of the Retinol serum at night if you are addicted to the effects (just sayin).

Murad Revitalixir Recovery Serum is £70.00 for 40ml and is available from

Murad Retinol Youth Renewal Range starts at £65.00 and is here.