Guest Review: Perricone MD Radiant Skin Collection

Treat time! I have a guest review for you today – the wonderful Jane from Modesty Brown ( has given a thorough testing to Perricone MD’s Radiant Skin Prescription set. Perricone MD is a brand that I rate really highly, but I have never been able to get past the fishy smell in some of the products! So thank you, Jane, for such a comprehensive review – amazing to see such clear differences to your skin!

“I’ve been trying the Perricone MD Radiant Skin Prescription for just over a month, so it’s time to report back on how I got on. The set contains travel size versions of the Nutritive Cleanser, Advanced Face Firming Activator Lotion and Face Finishing Moisturizer. All of these are good size travel pots and I have enough left for at least another month’s use.

I was particularly interested to try this set as it gave me the opportunity to try the Advanced Face Firming Activator. Having read London MakeUp Girl’s excellent review, I was certain that this would improve the texture of my 35+ skin. The active ingredients in the Activator serum are Glycolic Acid, Alpha Lipoic Acid and Dimethyl MEA (DMEA).

A couple of words of warning here regarding the Face Firming Activator. This serum contains Glycolic Acid so you will need to use sun protection religiously as your skin will be more susceptible to UV damage. The face cream in the set doesn’t contain sun protection so you either need to use a separate sunscreen or use a different moisturiser with SPF. Also, there’s no getting around the fact that DMEA gives the product a faint fishy smell and I realise this will be a deal breaker for some. It does contain some fragrance to mask it but this fades quickly after application. The fishy aroma also fades and I can’t detect it all after about an hour.

I’m always nervous about adding too many new products at once to my routine, especially ones that contain active ingredients. So, to prevent my skin from freaking out, I introduced the Advanced Face Firming Activator first, adding the moisturiser and cleanser a week and a half later. To begin with I applied the Face Firming Activator daily but I found this left my skin feeling a little uncomfortable. I swapped to application every other day and I found this sufficient to see a difference in skin texture without leaving my skin feeling tight.

I saw a difference in my skin texture within that first week. My skin looked brighter and the surface more refined. I saw an even bigger difference when I added the Nutritive Cleanser and Face Finishing Moisturizer to my routine. The Nutritive Cleanser is a foaming face wash and I realise this won’t suit everyone. I always use a foaming cleanser in my routine without any issue (don’t kill me Mrs Hirons) and I especially like this one as it smells like Johnsons Baby Lotion. For those who are interested, this cleanser contains SLES rather than SLS.

The Face Finishing Moisturizer has an unusual formula and I wasn’t sure if I would get on with it at first. It’s quite a runny lotion with tiny bits of what look like undissolved powder. Like the Activator, this moisturiser contains Alpha Lipoic Acid and DMEA. Despite normally using creams, I found this lotion enough to hydrate my normal skin. It leaves my skin soft and plump without any signs of greasiness. Those with dry skin may not find it sufficiently moisturising.

I got on very well with the products in the Radiant Skin Prescription set. My skin is softer, smoother and the fine lines are less apparent, particularly on my forehead. My skin tone also looks more even and consequently my skin looks brighter. This is the most significant difference for me and I believe this is down to the Glycolic Acid in the Face Firming Activator.

I would recommend this set to anyone in their mid-thirties plus looking for a regime to make a real difference to the appearance of their skin. The set is also a great way to try the products: the Face Firming Activator costs £99 for a full bottle and it can be daunting to lay out such a lot of cash without trying it first. I cannot find the Radiant Skin Prescription set on the Perricone MD website but the Fab Four Travel Set is very similar and costs £58 for four products which include the Face Firming Activator and Face Finishing Moisturizer.”

(The exact set can be found on BeautyExpert – it’s £99)

© 2018 A Model Recommends®: all opinions are my own and any sponsored or paid posts will always be clearly marked as an AD in the title. I accept press samples and receive product and services to review as part of my job. *Outbound links are affiliate links, which means that I receive a very small percentage of any sale made. This does not affect my content in any way and does not cost you anything, but you are most welcome to Google the products on a new page if you prefer. Please see here for full "about" section and disclaimer. A Model Recommends and Ruth Crilly are registered trademarks.



  1. Love in a mist
    May 12, 2012 / 6:38 am

    Hi girls, just thought I’d let you all know this exact set is for sale at QVC for £34.80 plus £3.95 postage item no 229781 and it can be sent back for refund if you don’t like it :-) xxx
    Personally I’m not fussed about fishy smells on the face lol! so will give this a miss xx

    • May 12, 2012 / 2:56 pm

      Thanks for sharing the QVC deal. I spotted that myself, it has a different name but the same products. I hadn’t realised you could return to QVC, it’s such a rarity to be able to do that!

      • Love in a mist
        May 13, 2012 / 7:15 pm

        Oh yes you can return anything QVC Sells within 30 days for full refund ( not postage and you pay return postage) even if you have used the products – really useful if you want to try out anything especially the expensive skincare ranges, which could otherwise be a costly mistake. Xxx

  2. May 12, 2012 / 7:06 am

    I have been using Cold Plasma and Face Finishing Moisturizer and my dry patches disappeared! There is a slight fishy scent in Cold Plasma, but I am ok with it. These are excellent products if you want healthy and glowy skin!

    • May 12, 2012 / 2:55 pm

      Hi Rola. It’s really useful to know that the Face Finishing Moisturizer works well for dry skin too. I always find it a little tricky to judge as my skin in normal to combination.

  3. May 12, 2012 / 7:58 am

    great review. I adore the moisturiser having got it in my Cult Beauty freebie.

    • May 12, 2012 / 2:51 pm

      Thanks Beauty Balm. Was the recent must-haves freebie? I was really tempted by that!

  4. May 12, 2012 / 8:14 am

    I don’t know what it is about the cleansers but they absolutely strip my face as if using detergent. I have a huge pump bottle of the nutritive cleanser and three trial bottles of the nutritive and some other sort of cleanser and I’ve tried “everything” including using it on my feet in order to not throw it out! What is causing this?

    I’ll give the “fish stuff” another go since I have so much of everything. I would LOVE for it to finally work. I feel as if I’m somehow not understanding something quite basic. So frustrating, especially given how expensive it is. Thanks for the help!

    (I did really like the “ceramic smoother,” however.)

    • May 12, 2012 / 12:46 pm

      Hi Upa. I did notice when I was looking at the ingredients for the Nutritive Cleanser that it does contain quite a different foaming ingredients. I can appreciate that this could be excessive for some skin types. I don’t think you’re doing anything wrong, but I imagine that if you’ve never got on with foaming cleanser, this would be one to miss.

      The ceramic smoother sounds interesting!

  5. Mel
    May 12, 2012 / 9:42 am

    I’ve got the firming activator, and the nutritive cleansing gel.. been using the firming activator like you longer than the cleanser. As these are quite pricey, I was expecting more stunning results.. afterall, your paying for better ingredients & their research. The firming activator yes seems good it does do something.. However the cleanser, well its not bad, but I would say its not so much better than say, Liz Earle or Alpha H balancing cleanser.. I know those two aren’t foaming.. but they are what I’ve previously used and loved for their effectiveness, without stripping or being harsh. I got these as I’m in my 40’s so need to go for products that are for mature skin.

    • May 12, 2012 / 12:41 pm

      Hi Mel. I agree that the Activator is the star of the three products. The cleanser is nice but I agree that you could substitute for something else. I like the Alpha H Balancing Cleanser too and I agree that would probably go just as well the Activator as the Nutritive.

  6. May 12, 2012 / 10:33 am

    I think the Activator is an excellent product. I do wish Perricone had the option of a cream cleanser in the range though – I’m not the biggest fan of foaming washes either ;)

    • May 12, 2012 / 3:00 pm

      Hi Grace! It would be nice if they did offer a cream cleanser. A similar weight to the Stem Organics would be great.

      • Janey
        July 24, 2013 / 11:33 pm

        There is a Neuropeptide Cleanser in the range which is a lovely soft cream for rinsing off. It leaves skin super clean and smells fantastic. J Xx

  7. May 12, 2012 / 4:15 pm

    Excellent review Mrs MB!

  8. MariaBent
    May 12, 2012 / 7:38 pm

    I’ve been meaning to order this brand from QVC because I’m curious about it, but some reviews in their site are not very favourable, so I don’t know…maybe I’ll try one of the most consensual products. For cleansing I think I’ll stick with Liz Earl.

    P.S. for Ruth
    I’ve inscribed in the Audible site, but your chosen book “Pigeon English” doesn’t seem to be available, at least doesn’t appear when one searches for it. Could you please check it out? (I’ve kept my one free download credit)

    • Ruth
      May 12, 2012 / 7:57 pm

      @Maria oh booooo! OK, will check it out! xx

  9. virginie
    May 13, 2012 / 4:05 am

    Hi, I would love all these products that you recommend, but I am a breastfeeding mother, would you still recommend??? I have pro acne skin, don’t know if I can use salicylic acid and glycol acid while breastfeeding????

    • Ruth
      May 15, 2012 / 8:26 am

      @Virginie hmm, worth checking with your doctor/midwife I think… I know that it’s usually salicylic that’s the worry. Why not try some peels with fruit acids instead? I still really love the Elemis Papaya peel, I’m wondering how that would be on acne prone skin though.. x

  10. Marisa
    May 14, 2012 / 9:36 am

    Hi everyone

    Has anyone tried the Perricone Skin Clear Supplements? I can’t decide between Perricone Skin Clear and Biocorrex skincare? Has anyone tried either for anti-ageing???? I’m not quite ageing but I do like to look after my skin for the future :)

  11. Darina
    May 14, 2012 / 7:48 pm

    I’m only 22, do you think this is worth a try?

    to Ruth- would you use this yourself?

    • Ruth
      May 15, 2012 / 8:14 am

      @Darina I can’t get past the smell, which is why Jane kindly reviewed for me! I’m not sure that you *quite* need this yet – what are your main concerns? x

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