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Retexturing Activator Face exfoliator

Retexturing Activator is rated 4.7 out of 5 by 121.
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This oil-free serum simultaneously exfoliates skin and replenishes moisture for radiant, smooth, skin

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Product Details

Retexturing Activator is a revolutionary replenishing and resurfacing serum that helps reinforce the skin’s barrier for healthier, more radiant skin. Using patented technology, this unique serum is highly effective in promoting proper exfoliation while optimizing the skin’s amino acid supply to reinforce the external barrier. Formulated in an efficient oil-free delivery system suitable for all skin types to replenish and exfoliate skin for noticeably soft, smooth skin texture. This oil-free serum has the resurfacing power of daily 20% glycolic acid treatment.

  • Bi-functional exfoliation and hydration
  • Diminishes the appearance of surface lines and smoothes skin
  • Increases the look of overall radiance
  • Balances moisture levels
  • Ideal for all skin types
  • Stimulates enzymes that help break the bonds that bind dead cells to the surface of the skin, to diminish surface lines and wrinkles

How To Use


Twice daily, apply 4-6 drops of serum to the face, neck, and chest, or use as directed by a skincare professional.

  • Science & Proof

  • Science

    Retexturing Activator harnesses two polar mechanisms – exfoliation and hydration – to activate skin’s natural desquamation, or removal of dead skin cells, and visibly diminish surface lines without dryness. This replenishing serum is shown to have the resurfacing power of a daily 20% glycolic treatment.

Key Ingredients

  • 25% hydroxyethyl urea/aminosulfonic acid compound
  • Kombucha
  • Hyaluronic acid

This unique patented combination of ingredients is designed to stimulate enzymes that help break the bonds binding dead skin cells to skin’s surface, to evenly exfoliate skin while maintaining the skin’s moisture levels

Learn more about hydroxyethyl urea

See all ingredients

aqua / water / eau, hydroxyethyl urea, hydroxyethylpiperazine ethane sulfonic acid, pentylene glycol, saccharomyces/xylinum/ black tea ferment, glycerin, sodium hyaluronate, methylparaben, phenoxyethanol

Physician Insight

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My favorite product is Retexturing Activator. I love that it gives the exfoliation and glow of a retinoid, while replenishing moisture for smooth skin.

Dr. Sarah Sawyer – Dermatology and Laser of Alabama

Learn about Dr. Sarah Sawyer

Complete Your Regimen


Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of SC's better products! Excellent product so far; I've only been using for two weeks but have seen an overall improvement in skin tone plus I'm noticing less breakouts. I was using twice a day to see what kind of results I would get, but that proved to be a bit too much as some places began to exfoliate more than I wanted, so, I switched to using every other evening. Although, some mornings, I do mix with a little aloe vera gel from the Best Bath Store which contains manuka honey and makeup application is smoother than with the serum alone. The gel also keeps the serum from being so sticky when turning in for the night. Goes great under the tinted sunscreen!
Date published: 2011-07-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Effective gentle exfoliator This is an excellent product for people who have sensitive skin, use retinol products, and/or those whose skin cannot handle a physical or chemical exfoliator - I am one of those people. I could never get the benefits that others got while using AHA or BHA products. And the difference that I saw in my skin after using this product for a couple of days was amazing. The clarity and texture of my congested skin dramatically improved and I had absolutely no irritation - a plus that someone with sensitive skin like me appreciates. I also love that they formulated this product with hyaluronic acid - genius! I use this along with the Phloretin CF and Retinol 0.5 and my skin has never looked better. I will now only use SkinCeuticals products :)
Date published: 2014-12-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Incredible Serum! I just started using the Retexturing Activator about a month ago and I have seen INCREDIBLE results. I have dry skin (especially because I live in a cold climate) and its been a year since I've been able to get a chemical peel. This serum in combination with the Salicylic Acid Wash Cleanser has renewed my skin. I also use the Serum 15 AOX+, but I first started using the Retexturing Activator on it's own. My face is soft and supple, and the name of the serum is correct: it truly retexturizes your face. I am in love! Highly recommended for sensitive, dry skin.
Date published: 2016-02-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Chemical Peel? Buy This Now! Estheticians & Dermatologists will offer their products post-chemical peel. Smile, say “Thank You” then run home to your pre-purchased Retexture Activator! Made for skin that needs TLC. It will make a huge difference in the quality of your peel and as a wife of a dermatologist.. I can say with confidence.. this is something you should pre-purchase and have ready. That being said, talk about it with your esthetician... spoiler alert... they will recommend it! If they don’t know SkinCeuticals or their products.. Smile.. back away ... get to someone who’s educated in the science behind SkinCeuticals.
Date published: 2019-03-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Game changer! This product helped me simplify and improve my skincare routine. It gently exfoliates and lifts congestion from pores without irritation. At the same time, it diminishes the appearance of fine lines. I no longer get that 'one spot a month' as this addresses the breakout and mitigates it before it becomes noticeable. I have been very satisfied with all of the products I have tried from this brand, and I feel like this is the capstone in terms of what it delivers and the immediacy in which it delivers improvements.
Date published: 2018-05-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Changing my mind about serums Up to this point I have struck out with serums. They usually break me out within 1 week of use. This product has not broken me out and my skin feels softer and looks brighter. I am only 3 wks in but I do think my forehead lines have softened. For reference I'm 35 with very sensitive skin. Struggle with adult acne along chin and have mild rosacea.
Date published: 2015-09-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing This product is nothing short of amazing. It's incredibly powerful and effective at softening fine lines, smoothing out roughness, evening skin tone, lessening hyperpigmentation, and hydrating! What more can you ask for without going and getting work done? My skin is incredibly intolerant to retin-a and retinol. While this isn't exactly the same, I'll take it!! My skin has never been brighter!
Date published: 2016-04-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Gamechanger I was introduced to Skinceuticals at the med spa office. I was having a really hard time managing my rosacea. Even after using prescription products my skin was still red and bumpy. I decided to give this retexturing activator a try. I had never even heard of such a product. It's been about a month and a half and gone are the days of wasted money and disappointment . I am so happy to have found this. It has been an answer to all of my problems. My skin is now soft and smooth. Thank you!
Date published: 2019-06-02
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