This French Anti-Aging Cream Is More Potent Than Retinol — and on Sale Before Black Friday

“Age and gravity catch up, but people still guess my age [as] 10 years younger than I am.”

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Photo: Courtesy of Amazon

Black Friday might seem like all anyone can talk about this week, and that's for a very good reason: Expensive coats, durable luggage, and absurdly comfortable sneakers are all at their best prices of the year, and paying under-market for investment pieces feels like quite the win. Even hotels in some of the prettiest parts of the globe are now discounted, but if you can't get away anytime soon, there's another marked-down way to erase some stress lines: French skincare favorite Avène is running a sale, and there are two products you shouldn't miss.

Beloved by the likes of Liv Tyler and Kendall Jenner (the latter told Allure she never travels without the brand's lip balm), Avène was once a hidden gem situated amongst nail files and hydrocortisone creams in understated French pharmacies. That was, until the brand came online with U.S. shipping; now, reviewers on the brand's website can't say enough good things about Avène's anti-aging Retrinal collection. Specifically, the Retrinal 0.1 Intensive Cream and Retrinal Eyes cream are exceptional — and for Black Friday, you can get free shipping and 25 percent off of everything with the code TGIF25.

What sets them apart from your typical drugstore anti-aging cream? The duo rely on retinaldehyde, which is the most potent form of retinol available without a prescription. It smoothes wrinkles and brightens skin, according to the brand, and the Intensive Cream also touts vitamin E to bat away aging free radicals and peptides to help firm skin and increase elasticity.

Courtesy of Amazon

To buy:, $53 (originally $70)

"I'm closer to 60 than I want to admit, and have been using this product (or its French predecessor) since I was in my 30s," wrote a shopper of the cream's effects, adding, "Age and gravity catch up, but people still guess my age [as] 10 years younger than I am. I call this my 'French potion,' and when someone asks me if it is truly the secret to my smooth eyes (I have no wrinkles around my eyes at all), I respond, 'I'm not going to quit using it to find out!'"

Per that sparkling review, there are no limits to where you can set the Intensive Cream to work. But if you'd rather a treatment targeted to your eye area, with hyaluronic acid added to plump skin and dextran sulfate to take on dark circles and puffiness, Avène's Retrinal Eyes cream is the move. "It does not disappoint with it's thick, non-greasy formula," wrote a user. "Fine lines appear less noticeable after 10 days."

As a 70-year-old fan wrote, the eye cream is one of those rare finds that actually gives concrete results. Within a month, they said they were "amazed and thrilled" with the change. "Crow's feet which started out as lines, then progressed to wrinkles, are now very faint," they expanded, adding, "I noticed my daughter staring at me from across the table. When she realized I noticed this, she said that my under eyes looked (her words) 'so pretty and smooth' and asked if I was using a blurring product or filler. Wow. A very nice compliment to me, and a testimony for this product."

Need we say more? Get the eye cream and try it for yourself while it's on sale for Black Friday.

Courtesy of Amazon

To buy:, $37 (originally $49)

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