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Archive for the ‘Beauty product reviews’ Category

I tried out this moisturiser while on the search for a moisturiser that would help with my slightly dry but acne prone combination skin. I was attracted by the promise of “optimal hydration” for normal to combination sensitive skin, as well as the non-comedogenic properties.

Note that there are 2 versions of this product – one with SPF and one without. The version I tried has SPF20.

For those interested, this is the ingredient list:

Avène thermal spring water (Avène Aqua), ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate, octocrylene, bis-etylhexyloxyphenol methoxyphenyl triazine, cyclomethocone, aluminium starch octenylsuccinate, polymethyl methacrylate, potassium cetyl phosphate, benzoic acid, beta-stiosterol BHT, caprylic/capric triglyceride, carbomer, chlorphenesin, disodium EDTA, fragrance (parfum), glycerin, glycine soja (soybean) seed extract (glycine soja seed extract), hydrogenated cocoglycerides, lecithin, PEG-32, PEG-400, phenoxyethanol poloxamer 188, sodium chondroitin sulphate, sodium hydroxide, tocopheryl glucoside, xanthan gum.

Pros

  • Light feel – great for oily parts of combination skin.
  • Suitable for sensitive skin (according to the box – didn’t cause any adverse reaction for me)
  • Non-comedogenic
  • SPF20
  • Avène does not test on animals for new raw cosmetic materials and finished products

The cream did not have a particularly pleasant or adverse smell – the smell is reminiscent of sun cream (to me, anyway).

Cons

  • Did not seem to help dry areas of my face at all. I think applying the cream was better than applying nothing, still I was a bit disappointed since I hoped this would “hydrate” my skin.
  • Quite expensive – £13.50 for 40ml at Boots (as of May 2015)
  • No mention of UVA protection on the tube, so not  ideal as standalone sun protection.

I think this cream is ideal if you are concerned about acne and want a light, mattifying moisturiser for normal to oily skin. I don’t think it is suitable if you have true combination skin which can be dry or oily in different areas – it didn’t help at all on the drier areas of my face. To be fair, the inner leaflet did state that the “UV textures (of their products) are both lighter than the classic corresponding textures”. However, it would have been more helpful if this statement had actually been on the outside of the box so that I could have found out before buying it! To explore the discrepancy between the description on the box vs. that on the inner leaflet further, the inner leaflet stated that “its airy texture is a real pleasure“, while the box  promised “immediate and intense, long-lasting hydration of the skin”).

Given that it didn’t do that much for me and is quite expensive, personally I wouldn’t buy this moisturiser again . I wish I had been better informed about the true texture/suitability of this product prior to purchasing it.

Based on my personal experience, I give this cream a rating of 2/5.

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Given the recent sunny weather, perhaps it is seasonal that I should be publishing a post about sunscreen. Nevertheless, I have become more conscientious regarding applying broad-spectrum sunscreen recently, after having read from various sources (e.g. the Skin Cancer Foundation) about the role UVA rays play in premature aging, and how they are present during all daylight hours, even during the winter months and on rainy days. Also, 50% of UVA rays can pass through glass, so even staying indoors in a place with windows doesn’t seem a very good excuse not to use some form of broad-spectrum sunscreen daily. After all, the say that prevention is better than cure, and while wrinkles and pigmentation may be low on the list of my personal concerns at the moment, that may no longer be the case should I be fortunate enough to live to a ripe old age.

Missha M Perfect Cover BB Cream SPF 42 PA+++

BB creams are a relatively trendy product at the moment due to their abilities to supposedly multitask as primer, foundation, sunscreen, moisturiser and anti-aging product. Various websites report how they were apparently first formulated by a German doctor for patients with sensitised skin following laser skin surgery, before being adopted and subsequently promoted by Korean celebrities.

Here in the UK, various BB creams are available from brands such as Boots, Maybeline, The Body Shop and Superdrug. However, none of these BB creams give any specifics regarding the level of UVA protection in their creams, and some of them don’t even mention any UVA protection at all. The only ones I have found so far which do mention levels of UVA protection are by Estee Lauder and Clinique, who either test on animals or belong to a parent company who tests on animals – not something I prefer apart from them being too expensive for me.

A quick look around on eBay and blog reviews made me settle on a 20ml tube of Missha M Perfect Cover BB Cream (SPF 42, PA+++), Shade No. 21. I emailed Missha, who say that they do not utilise animal testing – a plus for me.

Having tried a tinted moisturiser/sunscreen formulation before (by L’Oreal, purchase in the days before I gave thought to animal testing), I must say that this BB cream definitely makes my skin look more evenly toned than tinted moisturisers. (In fact, I rather found tinted moisturisers a waste of time…) Also, I appreciate the non-greasy feel (which is one reason why I stopped using Superdrug’s facial sunscreen – although their body sunscreen is fine by me). Being a girl who hates using makeup, the idea of a skincare product I can use on those days when I am either not feeling so confident is also ace. Some reviewers seem not to like the scent, but personally I like the talcum powder-like scent. Perhaps it’s a matter of personal preference.

Lastly, this BB cream is relatively affordable for a sunscreen product if you buy the 50ml tube – as of today “buy it now” ones on eBay range from about £7.50 – £10. (My 20ml tube cost £4.33, as an auctioned item.)

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N.B. there seems to be a multitude of opinions out there regarding Missha’s animal testing policies. Some say they do, others say they don’t. My personal reckoning is that they probably don’t (due to statements on retailers’ websites and reports– unless customer services lied to all those sources which would be really shocking) but as a company they have poor customer services which are difficult to get a response from (see this blog post on emailing Missha). However, this was not my experience as I received a response from Missha in about 30 minutes after I wrote to them regarding testing of their products and ingredients.

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At last I can end my search for a lovely discrete pink. This has to be my favourite shade ever, a lovely nude beige. Now if only I could find a brand which does this plus has a DBP-free/phtalate-free policy…

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Another colour swatch for you! This colour is discrete yet pretty (by now, you should have guessed that these tend to be qualities I appreciate in my choice of colours!) but the pigments in this one tended to separate rather quickly over time. A little nail polish remover and a shake of the bottle seems to do the trick.

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The colour is nice, but the application sucks and it chips really easily (well, what did you expect for £1.79). In short, a much better choice for toenails rather than fingernails.

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I love this shade (how I discovered it). It’s pretty yet discrete enough to be used on a weekly basis. In this picture, I had just used a single coat (not forgetting base coat and top coat of Sally Hansen’s Hard as Nails) of colour so the naturally white tips of my nails are showing through a bit.

Take care when applying though, otherwise you might have a slightly streaky finish.

Here’s a picture of my nails (taken on a seperate occasion) with about 3 coats on.

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