by Nerorz

by Kali Kushner

Have you ever looked at someone’s perfect skin and wondered what kind of skincare routine they have, but upon asking they saynone. How is this possible? You have a nightly 13 step ritual and still experience blemishes but their skin is flawless while they rarely splash water on it. It’s all in their genes. That’s where Sunday Riley’s Good Genes gets its name from. When using this serum, you’ll have people guessing if your flawless skin is due to the products you’re using or if it’s just in your genetic DNA. If looking like you were born with good skin is your constant goal, then this serum is for you.


Consistently ranked as one of the best Sunday Riley products, Good genes is an exfoliating lactic acid treatment that can be used nightly as a serum or weekly as a mask. Good geneshas a white semi silky-sticky texture and is designed to improve fine lines, wrinkles, acne, and scars. With continued use it also helps to reduce the appearance of post inflammatory hyperpigmentation, AKA those red marks that linger for ages and are almost impossible to get rid of. Since it contains AHA (an exfoliant) lactic acid, it may be irritating to sensitive skin. It’s perfectly suitable for all other types of skin though; dry, oily, combination, and rough texture. It’s perfect for aging and wrinkled skin because its ability to plump and brighten the layers deep down.


Good genes can be applied either as a serum or a facial. When applied as a “flash facial”, mix one pump of good genes with two pumps of the ceramic slip cleanser; allowing the mixture to sit on your face for up to 10 minutes. This will give you an immediately radiant complexion and a deep detox facial, unclogging any dead skin cells and retexturizing the skins surface. This issupposedly the same facial that’s used on the model’s backstage at NY Fashion Week right before applying theirmakeup.

When applying as a serum use one to two pumps in between your treatment and moisturizer. Start with one pump every 3 days if you have sensitive or dry skin and work your way up from there. In total, the serum can be applied up to five times a week depending on your skin type. Because it contains AHA, it can make your skin more sensitive to the sun so it’s important when using Good Genes to protect yourself with sunscreenevery day.

Active Ingredients (According to

-High Potency, Purified Grade Lactic Acid: Exfoliates dull, pore-clogging dead skin cells to instantly clarify and reveal smoother, clearer, younger-looking skin, while fighting visible signs of hyperpigmentation.
-Licorice (GlycyrrhizaGlabra): Naturally brightens the appearance of hyperpigmentation.
-Lemongrass: Helps boost radiance.
-Aloe: Helps soothe the skin.


It’s a cult classic for good reason. Good Genes has been clinically tested to improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles in as little as 3 minutes. Ina Sunday Riley clinical study:

-100% of women said their skin looked and felt significantly smoother and more radiant, with visibly reduced lines and wrinkles after application
– 100% of women said this was the most effective skin-plumping product they have ever used and would definitely recommend this product to a friend

In my short month and a half of using Good Genes, I’ve not only noticeddiminished acne scarring, plumping and evening ofskin tone, but also fewer and smaller breakouts. Cysts that take up my whole face and lastmonths have transformed into tiny whiteheads that only appear around that time of the month anddisappear in just a few days. And, ifI’m lucky I go weeks without any new breakouts. I have sensitive skin and haven’t had any problems in terms of irritation. I eased into treatment once every three days and with no adverse effects I began using it every other night under my moisturizer.

The feel is kind of a thicker, emollient texture that sits on top of the skins surface. I personally prefer water gel textures that absorb into the skin quickly but it isn’t ahuge issue considering the results it delivers. When applying the treatment before my moisturizer I found it necessary to wait about 10 to 15 minutes for the product to completely absorb before proceeding to the next step. This is a small issue for me since I like to get my skincare done in one foul swoop and the drying process (and texture) slows down my entire routine. I’ve found altering my nightly routine to skip either my oil treatment or moisturizer usually does the trick and speeds up the process. But still, it doesn’t feel like itever fully absorbs- just sitson top of the skin. I’ve read for those with oily skin it does have atendency to do this, while people struggling with dry skin find it absorbinginstantaneously.

The smell isn’t the greatest but its formulated without fragrance or any other unneeded chemicals that might mess with your skin (or your hormones) in the long run so IMO it’s totally worth it. Infact, Sunday Riley formulates all their products that way, with the cleanest natural ingredients possible with a boost of science to amplify results. It’s like the best of both worlds. Plus, you get used to the smell after a while and if you’re anything like me you start craving that scent because that means it’s time for bed.

In all, I’ve found good genes to be an effective treatment for smoothing fine lines and superficial acne scarring as well as speeding up the healing process of hyperpigmentation. It’s definitely helped to further calm down my skin while treating any new blemishes in its path.Stillnot convinced? Check out my before and after photos below!

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I would recommend however, steering clear of Good Genes if you are suffering from a compromised skin barrier or over exfoliation. Always make sure to dive into AHA’s and BHA’s slowly (as they can cause purging) and check the ingredient list to make sure you’re not sensitive to any of the ingredients.

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