Launch List: The Best New Beauty Products Launching in August

Elizabeth Arden Retinol + HPR Ceramide Rapid Skin Renewing Water Cream ($92, launching August 15)

“Retinol has been the holy grail for well over 20 years in the industry, but everyone has been looking for a way to minimize its irritancy,” says Dr. Michael Traudt, vice president of claims, microbiology, analytical chemistry and consumer affairs for the brand. “It’s great stuff, but too many people have discomfort and choose not to use it. That’s why we created this product.”

We don’t typically see retinol included in water cream formulations, and this one has a really addictive, whipped-like texture that melts into skin. It doesn’t sacrifice efficacy—smoothing fine lines, repairing sun damage, firming the skin—but it’s surprisingly tolerable.

“It’s truly a game changer,” adds Susan Zuckerman, the brand’s vice president of global marketing. “It’s formulated with HPR, which is a high-performance retinoid that is 10 times more potent than pure retinol and gentle on skin. You really get the best of both worlds. In our testing, 100 percent of women saw a reduction in lines and wrinkles and firmer, more radiant skin. But what really sets this apart is that 100 percent of women also felt that it was comfortable on their skin, even first-time retinol users.”

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