Kiehl's Daily Reviving Concentrate Review and Ingredients Analysis

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Kiehl's Daily Reviving Concentrate is Kiehl's latest face oil, and is the day counterpart to their iconic product, the Midnight Recovery Concentrate (which I've made mentioned of on my blog before). The idea behind the Daily Reviving Concentrate is that you use it during the day to protect your skin, and you use the Midnight Recovery Concentrate during the night to help your skin repair itself. For facial oil lovers, this is pretty great!

Kiehl's Daily Reviving Concentrate: A companion to the iconic Midnight Recovery Concentrate

The Kiehl's website calls this a face oil that "strengthens skin’s defenses against daily aggressors to keep skin youthful and radiant-looking all day", and "provides antioxidant protection with a powerful blend of naturally-derived oils, including Ginger Root, Sunflower and Tamanu". It also claims to be "Paraben free, 100% natural origin, Mineral oil free, Non-comedogenic, Non-acnegenic". I guess that's going to appeal to a lot of people!

Kiehls Daily Reviving Concentrate DRC
Kiehl's Daily Reviving Concentrate: The latest facial oil product from the brand

Of course, I'm sure there will be questions - for one, what is in the Kiehl's Daily Reviving Concentrate that's so special? And can a facial oil really be non-comedogenic and non-acnegenic? We shall see!

Kiehls Daily Reviving Concentrate Ingredients
Kiehl's Daily Reviving Concentrate ingredients

The main ingredients in the Daily Reviving Concentrate are emollients (Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Dicaprylyl Ether, Dicaprylyl Carbonate, Squalane), most of which are quite commonly found in other face moisturizers and similar products. These probably make up the backbone of the product.

There are also a variety of plant oils and extracts (Canola Oil, Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil Unsaponifiables, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis Peel Oil, Calophyllum Inophyllum Seed Oil, Coriandrum Sativum Seed Oil, Rosa Rubiginosa Seed Oil, Citrus Grandis Peel Oil, Zingiber Officinale Root Oil, Limonene, Linalool, Citral, Geraniol, Malpighia Punicifolia Fruit Extract), all with various properties. Most of them have emollient properties, as might be expected of oils, while some have anti-irritant functions (Canola Oil, Calophyllum Inophyllum Seed Oil) and anti-oxidant effects (Rosa Rubiginosa Seed Oil, Malpighia Punicifolia Fruit Extract). Some others, however, could be irritating to the skin (Citrus Aurantium Dulcis Peel Oil, Citrus Grandis Peel Oil, Zingiber Officinale Root Oil, Limonene, Linalool, Citral, Geraniol), but these are in pretty small amounts, so unless you are very sensitive to them, I probably wouldn't be too bothered. There is also Tocopherol, which is Vitamin E, an antioxidant.

Kiehls Daily Reviving Concentrate Box
Kiehl's Daily Reviving Concentrate: Main ingredients are emollients and occlusives, as well as plant oils and extracts

So, now that we know what's inside the Daily Reviving Concentrate, is it really all that? First, certainly it is "Paraben free, 100% natural origin, Mineral oil free" - there aren't any parabens (that said, parabens are safe as used in cosmetics and skincare), there's no mineral oil (which is also safe, although it can be comedogenic for some people), and everything in the product can be naturally derived.

Kiehls Daily Reviving Concentrate Bottle
Kiehl's Daily Reviving Concentrate: As advertised, it's paraben-free and mineral oil free (not that you need to avoid either ingredient)

As for "Non-comedogenic, Non-acnegenic", my view is that while the main ingredients (Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Dicaprylyl Ether, Dicaprylyl Carbonate, Squalane) aren't likely to give anyone acne. In fact, most of them are found quite commonly in other non-oil makeup and skincare products, such as moisturizers, lotions, foundations, and the like, and I'm personally quite fond of both Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride and Squalane in my skincare products, as they tend to work well for me as emollients. So unless you happen to be sensitive to one of the main ingredients or some of the plant extracts in the product (and certainly sensitivity can vary among different people), chances are, the product may feel oily on your skin, but it might not break you out any more than your typical makeup or skincare product. For what it's worth, the folks at Kiehl's stressed to me that the Daily Reviving Concentrate was tested on people prone to acne, and found that it worked fine on them (I guess that's what they mean by "non-acnegenic").

Kiehls Daily Reviving Concentrate Dropper
Kiehl's Daily Reviving Concentrate: It's an oil, but also not too likely to cause pimples

Now that we've looked at the formulation and the ingredients of the product, let's take a look at how the product itself functions on our skin. This is definitely an oil, and spreads and feels like an oil, but the spreadability of the Daily Reviving Concentrate is great - it spreads out easily and isn't as thick as say, olive oil or a common oil. It also has a floral-herbal scent that is quite light. The Midnight Recovery Concentrate has a more herbal, stronger scent. While I'm not usually a fan of fragrances in skincare products, I do quite like the scent of the Daily Reviving Concentrate - if this were a perfume, I'd wear it!

Oil-based skincare products can often leave skin looking or feeling oily, and in the case of the Daily Reviving Concentrate, how much shine and residue my skin feels really depends on how much I apply, and how much I massage the oil in. I found that 2 or 3 drops was more than sufficient for my face. With a very light application, skin feels silky but not too oily, but if you want something more emollient, then a heavier application will feel more oil-like on the skin.

Kiehls Daily Reviving Concentrate Oil
Kiehl's Daily Reviving Concentrate: The fragrant oil requires only 2-3 drops for each use

Kiehl's recommends that you use this as a serum, under your moisturizer, but because this is primarily composed of emollient and occlusive ingredients, I've found that this sometimes works better over my moisturizer, depending on how emollient and occlusive my moisturizer is. In general, I've found that I get best results when I layer my more occlusive products over my less occlusive ones. And most times, I find that this is usually sufficient by itself as a moisturizer - I often pair a lightweight lotion under it, top it up with a few drops of Daily Reviving Concentrate, pat into face, and this is sufficient as a skincare base. I imagine that layering this over or under another moisturizer would probably work best for those with dry skins, or who live in cold or dry climates.

Kiehls Daily Reviving Concentrate 1
Kiehl's Daily Reviving Concentrate: A well-formulated, lightweight facial oil for those who love this class of product

So, would I recommend this? If you like facial oils, or want to try out a facial oil, this is a fairly well-formulated facial oil, with emollient properties that is also made to be fairly lightweight, as far as face oils go. It might work best for those with dry skin, or those who want an emollient, occlusive product. On the other hand, if you've got oily skin and can't stand the thought of adding more oil to your face, then you might want to give this a pass. Although this might not initially seem cheap at $80 a bottle, because you use only a few drops used each time, one bottle will last for quite awhile.
Recommended? Formulation Packaging Ease of Use Effectiveness
Yes, if you like face oils 7/10 9/10 8/10 8/10
The Bottom Line: The Kiehl's Daily Reviving Concentrate is an emollient, occlusive face oil with a variety of plant extracts.

(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.)


  1. Oo pricey, but like you said it would probably last forever. I loved the Midnight Recovery so it would be fun to try this daytime version!

  2. Great review thank you!

  3. i love this! you ent so in-depth with the ingredients! this was flawless!

  4. I have extremely dry skin and have tried too many products to count, including prescriptions as well as those sold at my dermatologist's office . I LOVE this product. It keeps my skin fresh, feels hydrated yet not oily and will be using the night version as well. Oh, and it smells amazing!

  5. Unfortunately, this broke me out terribly. I never have acne EVER, but the Daily Reviving Concentrate gave me the deepest painful pimples :( which was upsetting, since I love Kiehls and was really excited about trying this product.

  6. I use the Midnight recovery concentrate every night and my whole life was change. I'm looking forward to use this product as well. thank you Kiehl's. you are the best skincare brand when it comes to beauty product.


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