I Tried The Stress-Fighting Tinted Serum Everyone’s Raving About

I Tried The Stress-Fighting Tinted Serum Everyone’s Raving About

I always knew that stress could wreak havoc with your skin, but I often associated its effect with rashes, cold sores, pimples and other skin woes. Possibly due to my rise in chocolate consumption at peak stress times too.

But then I spoke to Trinny Woodall, who told me that “cortisol actually lives on the skin” (FYI cortisol is a stress hormone). And as such, it can be very much responsible for a dull and drab complexion, as well as accelerated ageing and the aforementioned ailments. It can also live on there for a while, so even if you’re not a typically ‘stressed’ person, it’ll still get you. 

It was for this reason that she wanted to create something to combat it. Fast forward a few years later and the product is Trinny London’s BFF De-Stress ($75 at Trinny London). It’s a tinted serum – named so because it contains active ingredients deserving of a premium skin care category, but it applies like lightweight makeup – AKA my kind of product.

So for the last couple of weeks I’ve been trying it daily and here’s what I found…

Trinny London BFF De-Stress Review

A lot of Trinny’s makeup advice and ethos revolves around using your fingers to apply and blend, so plenty of her other products come in pots. But this one was more my speed, packaged in a sleek silver tube with a pump dispenser – it reminded me a lot of the IT Cosmetics CC Cream in this aspect.

In the name of Trinny, I refrained from using a brush or sponge to apply. And you know what? I’m so glad I did because the texture is amazing. The word ‘serum’ had me expecting a runny texture, similar to The Ordinary’s Serum Foundation. But BFF De-Stress is certainly on the creamier side. It’s easy to control, spread, and melts beautifully into the skin.

You don’t need a lot, and it’s the kind of product you can pop all over the face in a rush without worry. It’s a light coverage that could be built to a medium if necessary, or paired with a concealer if you need something extra.

This is how much I put on

Put simply, it just makes your skin look better without masking your entire complexion. I was sent the shade ‘Claire’ to try and it was a great match, evening out my redness and adding glow. Due to the nature of the product I’d say there’d be a lot more wiggle room with shades. In terms of finish, I definitely think it’s one for those who prefer their base juicy and fresh, but you could also run some powder over the top to mattify if preferred.

Before and after

But did it actually de-stress my skin?

The tinted serum ticked a lot of boxes for me in terms of skin-like coverage and texture. But the true test (and main purpose of the product) was the stress-fighting capabilities. To get sciency about it, the product contains NP-TriOX™ Technology, which includes the ‘stress-busting’ ingredient Neurophroline. Its main job is to tackle both the short and long-term effects of cortisol on the skin. Essentially, the technology actively neutralises cortisol so it can’t do its nasty thing.

It’s not exactly something you can test from first use or see straight away. However, I just so happened to be experiencing some rare eyelid dermatitis when I began using it. I say rare because it’s a flare-up I’d never had before. I even had a makeup artist notice it and tell me that it’s commonly associated with stress. Funnily enough, I was very stressed at the time. Still, I wasn’t sure if that was the reason, but after a week of using BFF De-Stress, it was certainly clearing.

I had also stopped using any other eye creams (just in case that was it), so it’s tough to say whether it was from cutting products out, adding this one in, or a combination of both that saw the dermatitis pack up and leave. 

However, another thing I’ve noticed since using the product is that my skin looks less puffy and crepey in the mornings. It usually takes me an hour or two of being in the land of the living before I actually look like me and not a squashed pillow version of myself. Again, hard to say if it’s the product or not but it does make you wonder…

The final verdict

I’ve tried a few other Trinny London products and it’s the first one to make it into my everyday kit. It’s an ideal no-makeup makeup base with my kind of finish and texture. It’s a higher price point than what I’d pay for a standard tinted moisturiser, yes. But if you think of it as a treatment serum AND tinted moisturiser (which it is), the price makes sense. Plus. the tube is generous and at a guess it would last up to three or four months, even with daily use.

Trinny London BFF De-Stress, $75 available at trinnylondon.com/au

Have you tried any of the Trinny London products? Does stress affect your skin?

Share your thoughts

Comments 35

  1. Very beautiful look but yes very pricey as well, Trinny London’s BFF De-Stress Serum more than a Tinted Moisturiser if it was ever on Sale I might consider trying this product.

  2. Love the before and after picture!

    In case anyone is wondering, the active ingredients are Neurophroline, Vit C, Vit E, plant extracts.


    Googling Neurophroline brings up Garden of Wisdom’s Neurophroline serum which says:

    > Neurophroline™ is an extract derived from wild indigo, Tephrosia purpurea. This patented extract helps break down cortisol production by skin cells, activates the release of a natural calming neuropeptide acting on mood, and visibly improves skin tone.

  3. I had ignored Trinny’s products until this article. Normally I stay away from tinted moisturisers because they don’t cover the redness on my cheeks. However, the coverage from the BFF De-Stress looks good.

    I’ve reported the spam by Benjamin1123.

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