Are Fancy Gold-Infused Skin-Care Products Worth the Hype?

Find out what the potential benefits are of these shiny serums, oils, eye patches, and more.

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Photo: SP/Getty

If you've perused the shelves of your local beauty retailer or have been scrolling through social media recently, chances are, you've noted the gold-infused skin-care trend. How could you not when, there are glittering, eye-catching specks of actual 24-karat gold mixed into serums, essences, and oils?

If this has left you with more than a few questions — including whether or not beauty brands are trying to up-sell you on a fancy ingredient that looks pretty but does nothing for you — you're not alone. Believe it or not, there are clear advantages to adding gold into your skin-care routine. "Gold is an antioxidant, and it can help protect against free radicals that accelerate the aging of the skin," explains Corey L. Hartman, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist and founder of Skin Wellness Dermatology in Birmingham, AL.

As gold hasn't been studied as much as other more well-known skin-care ingredients, it's possible that some of the positive results you might experience could be due to other actives that are in a product's formula, notes Dr. Hartman. That said, gold has been found to have strong anti-inflammatory properties, which means it can help soothe and calm acne-prone skin and calm redness from rosacea, he adds. (

In addition to calming properties, Dr. Hartman points out that gold has anti-aging benefits — it can help minimize fine lines and wrinkles, and boost the skin's firmness and brightness. In fact, due to its effectiveness in helping improve skin's elasticity, Dr. Hartman recommends it to many of his patients over the age of 40. Not to mention, it's gentle and can be tolerated by most skin types, but Dr. Hartman suggests consulting your doctor if you have skin sensitivities.

Ready to go for the gold, literally? Keep scrolling for the best gold-infused skin-care products.

01 of 08

ZPM 24K Gold Anti-Aging Face Serum Moisturizer

gold skincare benefits zpm

With more than 1,700 five-star ratings on Amazon and a price tag of less than $20, this might be the gold standard of gold skin-care products. Not only is this anti-aging moisturizer packed with 24-karat gold, but it also boasts vitamin C, vitamin E, and hyaluronic acid to hydrate, plump skin, and reduce fine lines and wrinkles.

One reviewer wrote: "I absolutely love this serum. It leaves my skin moist and dewy. I actually see a difference in my face [since] the serum makes it look plump, therefore wrinkles and fine lines are not noticeable. I use it morning and night!"

02 of 08

Soon Skincare Golden Eye 24K Gold Hydrogel Eye Patches

gold skincare benefits soon beauty

If you struggle with crow's feet and dark under-eye circles, look no further than these gel patches. In addition to being incredibly moisturizing, these patches contain 24-karat gold to banish fine lines, niacinamide to fade dark spots and even out texture, caffeine to brighten, and vitamin E to soothe and hydrate skin. They're also biodegradable, eco-friendly, and won't slip once applied so you can even reap the benefits while you work from home. (Related: The 8 Best Under-Eye Masks That Will Brighten, De-Puff, and Zap Wrinkles)

"The Golden Eye 24k Gold Hydrogel Eye Patches really leave the skin under my eyes looking smooth and hydrated," reported a shopper on the Soon Skincare website. "Even hours after removing the patches, my skin still feels very hydrated."

03 of 08

Physicians Formula 24-Karat Gold Collagen Serum

gold skincare benefits physicians formula

Made with 24-karat gold, vegan collagen, glycerin, and vitamin B3 — which all work to amp up your skin's hydration, firmness, elasticity, and brightness — this lightweight serum helps to deliver more youthful-looking skin with each pump. Also nice: The formula is hypoallergenic and paraben- and fragrance-free, so it's safe for even those with sensitive skin. And if you're wanting to take your anti-aging game to the next level, check out the brand's line of gold-infused products, including a setting spray, an eye cream, and a lip serum.

"This serum seemed to work nicely with my skin," noted a customer. "I didn't have a lot of breakouts when I was using this serum (not saying it's a direct correlation, just an association that I noticed when I was using it). I felt like my skin was particularly smooth when using it. I think it's a great product in general, but especially for the price."

04 of 08

Tatcha Gold Camellia Beauty Oil

gold skincare benefits tatcha

An oil designed to be use on your face, hair, and body, this is about as luxurious as it gets. Made with Japanese camellia oil, licorice extract, crushed 23-karat gold flakes, and Hadasei-3 Complex (Tatcha's proprietary trio of Japanese anti-aging superfoods — green tea, rice, and algae), this oil is packed with vitamins, antioxidants, and nourishing omegas to moisturize, calm and reduce redness, combat signs of aging, and nourish skin and hair. Plus, it won't leave you feeling greasy, since it absorbs quickly — thanks to its unique molecular weight that's an almost identical match for skin. Amazon shoppers love that it's lightweight, minimizes wrinkles, and is safe enough to use on sensitive skin. (Related: The Best Hair Oil for Your Hair Type)

05 of 08

AL'IVER 24K Gold Foil Essence

gold skincare benefits aliver

Combining 24-karat gold flakes, collagen, and peptides, this facial essence brightens, smooths, hydrates and plumps, increases skin's elasticity, and helps to minimize fine lines and wrinkles for one powerful punch. If you're not familiar with essences or what step it would be in your skin-care routine, you should use it after cleansing and toning, and before your serum and moisturizer. (Related: What Are Facial Essences — and Should You Be Using One?)

"Love the lightweight, long-lasting moisture my skin gets from 24K," raved a fan. "I use it daily before my makeup, along with a retinol every evening, and have had multiple coworkers and family members say I look like I'm getting younger. I love it."

06 of 08

Masqueology 24k Gold Serum

gold skincare benefits masqueology

Formulated with 24-karat gold, this serum helps minimize fine lines and wrinkles, slows the breakdown of collagen in your skin, and restore's the skin's elasticity for firmer, more youthful-looking skin. It couldn't be easier to use: After cleansing, apply 3-5 drops to your skin and massage until the product is absorbed, following up with moisturizer. Amazon reviewers laud it for actually reducing their face lines and leaving them with smooth, glowing skin.

07 of 08

Peach Slices Gold Glow Priming Serum

gold skincare benefits peach slices

While gold is already a powerful antioxidant in this serum's formula, it also features an antioxidant-rich berry blend to fight environmental damage and banana to nourish and hydrate skin. It's lightweight, absorbs quickly, and perfectly primes and smooths skin prior to makeup application (although you can totally wear it alone for a gorgeous glow).

One reviewer wrote: "I was unsure about this product because I thought it would have too much sparkle or an unnatural shine, but I'm in love! It looks great as a primer. It keeps my makeup in place and does a beautiful job at creating a dewy look. I'm more comfortable going without foundation as this and other Peach Slices products are improving my skin. This also doesn't break me out in those weird little red bumps since there's no fragrances or dyes."

08 of 08

A Method 24K Gold Snail Growth Factor Serum

gold skincare a method

This serum might be a splurge, but it's infused with lots of powerhouse ingredients, including gold leaf flakes and snail secretion growth factor, which studies say reduces fine lines and wrinkles. It also helps to brighten your complexion, reduce inflammation, and prevent signs of aging. While it's pricey, a little bit of this serum goes a long way, so you won't need to replace it often. (Related: There's a Gross Ingredient In This Anti-Aging Cream, But Everyone Seems to Love It)

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