Product Review: Olay Total Effects Night Firming Moisturiser

Name: Total Effects Night Firming Moisturizer
Brand: Olay
Size: 50ml
Price: €10,99

From Olay’s website:
Olay Total Effects Night Firming Cream gives you multiple age-defying effects working overnight for you.
Minimises lines: Helps to visibly reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
Nourishing Moisturisation: For a Radiant Healthy Glow
Tone Enhancement: Balances colour & helps to visibly reduce appearance of age spots
Gentle Exfoliation: Smoothes and evens skin texture
Pore Refinement: Minimises the appearance of pores
With Anti Oxidants: Helps prevent free radical damage to the skin’s surface layers
Subtle firming: Hydrates for firmer skin appearance.

What I liked:
– consistency is neither too light nor too thick and absorbs quickly
– moisturizes skin well, making it soft and smooth
– temporarily reduces the appearance of fines lines and wrinkles
– reduces the appearance of age spots
– contains antioxidants that help prevent premature aging
– comes in a hygienic tube with a pump dispenser
– the price

What I didn’t like:
– doesn’t minimize the appearance of pores

Olay (or Oil of Olaz as the brand is called in Italy) moisturizers are terribly underrated in my opinion, which is a shame because they work well and yet are quite inexpensive. I believe it’s partly Olay’s fault though. Not only the brand has a very old lady image which may put some people off, but they also like to include Isopropyl Palmitate, which is very comedogenic, in a lot of their products. So, if you’re avoiding Olay because one of their moisturizers broke you out, just opt for one without this ingredient, such as Olay Total Effects Night Firming Moisturizer.

Olay Total Effects Night Firming Moisturizer is my favourite night cream and, even though I may stray from time to time, I always come back to it. It comes in a simple and sleek tube with a pump dispenser which is very hygienic and ensures that the antioxidants the cream contains won’t oxidize (ie became ineffective when exposed to light and air). The pump dispenser also only dispenses the right amount of product you need so that none gets wasted. The cream itself is white in color and has a very subtle, clean scent that disappears quickly. The consistency is just right, not too lightweight and runny, but not thick and heavy either, and just spreads easily and absorbs quickly into the skin.

Olay Total Effects Night Firming Moisturizer claims to provide seven age-defying benefits for the skin. It promises to reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, pores and age spots, moisturize skin, even the skintone, prevent free radical damage and improve skin’s firmness. How? Although the US version of this cream is slightly different from the European one, they both contain a high concentration of Niacinamide, which is a wonderful and multipurpose skincare ingredient anyone should incorporate into their skincare routine.

Niacinamide, also called Vitamin B3, is more effective than petrolatum in reducing water loss and increasing the skin’s moisture levels. It also improves skin’s elasticty, and minimizes the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, hyperpigmentation and age spots. Although Olay exaggerates the benefits of niacinamide, it is still a very effective ingredient. The cream moisturizes my skin, making it soft, smooth and a little bit brighter. It also makes my fine lines appear temporarily smaller, while my skin looks and feels a bit firmer, but only very slightly so. As for the reducing of age spots, I can’t vouch for that as I don’t have any.

The moisturizer also contains Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, a stable form of Vitamin C and Tocopheryl Acetate and Tocopherol which are both forms of Vitamin E. They are all powerful antioxidants that can fight free radicals and thus prevent new wrinkles form forming. But although this cream is full of beneficial ingredients that will improve the way your skin looks and feels, it won’t make you look ten years younger. No cream can do that. In addition, this cream doesn’t make pores look smaller as it promises.

Aqua, Glycerin, Niacinamide, Isohexadecane, Dimethicone, Isopropyl Isostearate, Polyacrylamide, Cocos Nucifera Oil, Panthenol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Tocopherol, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Sucrose Polycottonseedate, C13-14 Isoparaffin, PEG-100 Stearate, Cetearyl Glucoside, Laureth-7, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Cetearyl Alcohol, Stearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Arachidyl Alcohol, Myristyl Alcohol, Titanium Dioxide, Benzyl Alcohol, Behenyl Alcohol, Dimethiconol, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Zinc Oxide, Disodium EDTA, Palmitic Acid, Stearic Acid, Sodium Chloride, BHT, Ammonium Polyacrylate, Methylparaben, Ethylparaben, Propylparaben, Butylparaben, Isobutylparaben, Phenoxyethanol, Parfum, Benzyl Salicylate, Citronellol, Geraniol, Hexyl Cinnamal, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Limonene, Hydroxyisohexyl 3-Cyclohexene Carboxaldehyde, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone.

Available at: and

Olay Total Effects Night Firming Moisturizer has a nice texture that absorbs easily into the skin. It moisturizes skin, making it soft and smooth. It reduces the appearance of age spots and temporarily that of fine lines and wrinkles too. In addition, it also makes skin slightly firmer and contains antioxidants that help prevent the signs of aging. However, it doesn’t make pores look smaller. The packaging is hygienic and the price quite cheap.

Rating: 4/5

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    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Sherry, I’m sure you’ll like it. It’s the best night cream I have tried so far. :)

  1. says

    I’ll keep an eye out for this one since it’s affordable and performs fairly well though I won’t mind splurging for an amazing product.
    Giorgia, is it okay to use body butters on the face? I’ve tried it with my cocoa butter from The Body Shop and I haven’t broken out.
    Janessa´s last blog post ..Perfect Nude Liner for ALL Skin ColorsMy Profile

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Janessa, it is a wonderful cream and it just goes to show that you don’t have to spend a lot of money for skincare products as there are a lot which are effective and cheap. :)

      I’m always weary of using Body Butters on the face because they are thick and I’m afraid they could cause breakouts, but if you tried it and didn’t get any adverse reaction at all, then I guess you can keep using it with no problems.

  2. says

    Wow I neverisopropyl ever knew isopropyl-palmitate breaks skin out – good to know! Now I know why I used to think this was the best Olay moisturizer they had. Btw, I have a question: would dimethicone, a silicone, also clog pores? I see this ingredient in a lot of facial moisturizers and even those which claim to be non-comodegenic…

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Beauty Box, this is definitely one of the best moisturizers from Olay. And I’ve always found it weird that a lot of people malign ingredients that are perfectly fine and safe and not a word is said against Isopropyl Palmitate, which is very comedogenic and should be avoided by those with combination/oily/acne-prone skin.

      Dimethicone, just like other silicones, is NOT comedogenic. However, it works by creating a protective barrier on the skin that traps moisture in, which is good because skin remains hydrated this way. However, if your skin is dirty or you use skincare products with comedogenic ingredients, then dimethicone will trap those in too and breakouts can occur. So, as long as you clean your face well and don’t use products with comedogenic ingredients such as Isopropyl Palmitate, you don’t have to worry about dimethicone breaking you out.

  3. Juliette says

    Thank you for a great review!! I got here browsing the net, and I sooo love your site!! I probably will spend all day here now :)
    You mentioned that the US version of this cream is slightly different from the European one. What exactly are the differences, and which is the best in your opinion? I live in Europe, but might travel to the States soon and was wondering if it would be a good idea to buy some over there (but of course only if they are better for me =)
    If you have any other tips about what to buy in the US, products that we don’t have in Europe or products that are better over there? I would be really happy if you would like to share some thoughts about that. Only if you have the time and want to :)
    Thanks again for great reviews on a lot of products!!

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Juliette, hi! I’m glad you like my site and I hope to see you on here often. :)

      I hope you will enjoy your trip to the US! As far as this cream is concerned, I prefer the EU version because it contains a slightly higher amounts of antioxidant. The difference is minimal though so you can purchase in the US if you find it costs less there than in Europe.

      I’m not sure there are products that are better over there, but there are those that are cheaper. Although brands like MAC, Benefit, MUFE and Urban Decay are pricey in the US too, they still cost a lot less there than they do over here so if you want something from these brands, do stock up while you’re there. Also, check out Wet n Wild and Milani as they’ve come up with some great products lately.. Oh and visit Bath & Body Works.. They have bath, body and lip products in any scent you can think of..

      If you have any further question, just ask. :)

  4. Aigeni says

    From what age would you recommend this creme? I am 27 and very interested in niaciamides because of the moisturizer properties.

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Aigeni, I think now would be a good time to start. I started using niacinamide in my late 20s and I wish I had started earlier!

  5. Aigeni says

    Thank you so much for answering. If I could ask one more question. I am new at reading ingredients and trying to understand what my skincare regime at this age should be and what ingredients should I look for? There is so much information out there and its so confusing. Is that a myth that if you start using anti aging creams too soon your skin will get used to it and later it wont work.?

  6. beautifulwithbrains says

    Aigeni, you’re welcome. That’s just a myth. Antiaging creams can only prevent the signs of aging, so if you start using them only after wrinkles have already appeared, they won’t really do much at all.

    The ingredients you should be looking for are niacinamide, antioxidants (can fight free radicals and prevent wrinkles), retinoids (the only ingredients proven to actually reduce wrinkles, but they work slowly) and glycolic acid (exfoliates skin).

  7. Anna says

    I read many webs that said isopropyl isostearate is very comedogenic (level 5). Olay is the best moisturizer for me, it really works. But i have alot of blackheads because this moisturizer and i can’t find a better moisturizer with the same price. Im so confused.

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Anna, I love Olay moisturizers but unfortunately they often contain comedogenic ingredients that can be problematic for oily or acne prone skin. Isopropyl Isostearate is one of them. Olay makes many moisturizers so if the brand works well for you, switch to one of those that don’t contain this ingredient, such as Complete All Day Moisturizer with Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 15 or Total Effects Fragrance-Free Moisturizer With Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 15. Hope this helps.

  8. loisk says

    I stopped using Olay because I saw more results with the Somaluxe Moisturizer in one week than I have seen in years of Olay. I am 44 and my skin has SOME wrinkles, and considerable discoloration from redness(no porcelian skin like when I was young). My skin is also extremely oily, prone to adult acne and I am beyond pale but otherwise think my skin has faired pretty I have become pretty skeptical of skin products and stuck with Olay.

    After several days of using the Somaluxe Moisturizer – even the big crease between my eyes isn’t as deep, and the discoloration has lessened almost to the point I can go without foundation!

    • Gio says

      Loisk, thank you for sharing your experience. I didn’t know that cream and had to google it! I’m glad it is working so well for you, although I wish it didn’t come in a jar. I’m concerned that won’t keep the antioxidants stable and effective for long as they oxidize when exposed to light and air.

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