Saturday, March 10th, 2012

Bobbi Brown Extra Repair Moisturizing Balm & Moisturizing Balm SPF 25
Bobbi Brown Extra Repair Moisturizing Balm & Moisturizing Balm SPF 25

Bobbi Brown Extra Repair Moisturizing Balm & Moisturizing Balm SPF 25 Review

This past winter, Bobbi Brown released Extra Repair in balm-form.  (It seems like these were reformulated, because based on googling, these were out previously.)  The range calls out two specific ingredients that make this extra awesome:  Argireline Peptide, which is said to “boost the natural production of new collagen and elastin in the skin, gradually helping to restore natural structure and firmness,” and Clary Sage Ferment, which is said to “improve cell renewal and repair barrier function, so skin looks more radiant and is more hydrated.”  Both come in glass jars with black screw-top lids, so for those who prefer airless pumps, pumps, or tubes, these are not for you.

The Extra Repair product range is focused on anti-aging, which is hard for me to weigh in on.  I have some fine lines around my eyes, but I don’t have too many aging signs yet.  The majority of my review is based on texture, feel, hydration, and the like.

Bobbi Brown Extra Repair Moisturizing Balm ($90.00 for 1.7 oz.) is a thick, gluey cream that really is like a potted lip balm.  Using this put me in such a quandary; at first, I loathed it, because it was such a pain to apply and never fully absorbed, yet it provided excellent hydration.  I cannot emphasize how thick, tacky, and gluey the texture of this product is.  I couldn’t even imagine using this during the day, because it doesn’t fully absorb for me, even after two to three hours.  It’s possible very dry skin types will have skin that just drinks this in, so absorption may be better.  I’m having very dry skin at the moment, and it’s still not quite absorbing for me.

I have just a couple of uses left in this jar, and I’ve been using it consistently as a night cream for about two months.  The best way to apply, which is still annoying, is to warm the product up between your fingers, dab a little bit all over your face (like spots), then pat those dabs into the skin with finger tips.  I don’t recommend attempting to spread the mixture, because it really doesn’t like to move around.

My skin always felt really plump and hydrated the morning after using this, and despite the heaviness, I never had an issue with breakouts.  The amount of acne I had was about the same or slightly less than my normal range.  The texture took some getting used to, as did the application method, and I’d still prefer a cream that was spreadable.  The jar format is less desirable, especially at this price point and with anti-aging ingredients.  It has a citrus and herb scent; I like it, but I tend to like those types of scents–others may find it less appealing.  FutureDerm has an excellent post on Argireline Peptide and its background, which may not be the most effective topical anti-aging ingredient (also see Cosmetics Cop).

Bobbi Brown Extra Repair Moisturizing Balm SPF 25 ($90.00 for 1.7 oz.) is the daytime companion product to the balm, but the texture of this is completely different.  It feels like a heavier cream, but it doesn’t feel too heavy for daytime wear if you have drier skin. I really liked this one, and I was sad when the jar finished (about a month, but my fiance was also using this for daytime wear).  Despite the heaviness, it absorbs after five to ten minutes, and it leaves skin feeling hydrated all day long.  I never began my night time skin regimen feeling like I needed more moisture.  It has the same citrus and herbal scent.

The active ingredients are Octinoxate (7.5%), Homosalate (5%), Oxybenzone (3%), and Avobenzone (2%). Octinoxate, Homosalate, and Oxybenzone cover the UVB spectrum, while Oxybenzone covers part of the UVA range and Avobenzone covers part of the UVA range (the ingredients themselves then cover 290-400nm). Cosmetics Cop has a good breakdown on whether avobenzone is stable or not. SmartSkincare also has a good overview of avobenzone and stability.

These were product samples, so they did not come with boxes, therefore I don’t have the ingredient lists at my disposal. I was able to find this ingredient source for the SPF 25 version.  On that note, I continue to be frustrated by the lack of ingredient lists published online by brands themselves–especially with skincare.

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21 thoughts on “Bobbi Brown Extra Repair Moisturizing Balm & Moisturizing Balm SPF 25 Review

  1. Teri Vogelsberg

    Sounds like I need to invest in this product :-)

  2. Traci

    All of your posts are authentic and sincere, but I have to say it again I love your honesty! And your hard work searching for ingredients…it looks like I would be able to use the SPF 25 balm since it doesn’t contain dimethicone, but I am NOT paying $90 for it. Definitely a luxury splurge from my perspective.

    • I think that unless you NEED the anti-aging benefits (and you’d have to do more research on whether it’s efficacious) to justify the $90. For just a good moisturizer, it’s definitely pricey! I enjoyed it, but I know that the price tag is because of the peptide in it.

  3. PJ

    Lucky you. No lines. I AM at that age where I am aware of each new worry line that I awaken with. I get excited when I see the word”peptide” and SPF 25 in the ingredient list.So I started using this about 2 months ago. I dont use it consistently, because the scent is so strong and chemical. Awful. Cant get past it. Luckily, I bought it as part of a set with balm rinse and eye cream at a special price, and I like those two products better. My skin is sensitive, and a couple of my other faves are Kate Somerville deep tissue repair ( but so $$$$– yikes!)
    and I also like Renee Rouleaus phytolipid comfort cream and hawaiian nourishing creams– they arent heavily scented and cause no irritation. Going to check out “future derm” now. Have a good weekend!

  4. Lenita

    christine, when i use very heavy creams, or oils, for my face, what i do is to warm it up in the center of my palm, then put my two palms together, rub them slightly to spread around the palm area, then spread them around my face and eyes by pressing my palm to my face. do this pressing all over the face, including the eye socket for the eye area (keep your eyes closed).

    this trick i learned from users of la mer creams, which is reported to be very heavy. and it works very well. just don’t spread the stuff too much all over the hands, just the center of the palm area so that you don’t waste too much product.

  5. Roo

    I think it’s crazy that companies send you products for promotional consideration and don’t give you the ingredients. Of course, it’s even worse that companies invest in online marketing and sales and don’t put ingredients on their web sites. We consumers need to demand to know ingredients!

    I often use thick, gummy creams that doesn’t spread well because my skin doesn’t like a lot of the ingredients that make creams spread well. They work a lot better on damp skin. I use a thermal water spray or sometimes a spritzed toner immediately before applying. Something like Fix+ would add even more slip.

    • You would be surprised — I used to try and ask for ingredient lists (and I didn’t email BB in this instance, so this is not against them), but I’d very rarely get anything back and just delays the review so I stopped bothering. A lot of times I’d have to call a local counter and ask them, but with ingredient lists, it’s just hard to translate over the phone. You can usually email the brand via their customer service, but it takes a few weeks to get an ingredient list back.

      It’s definitely easier to spread if I’ve used toner immediately before :)

  6. Mallory

    Christine I am desperate for you help and hope you can assist

    Sorry this is not related to this post, I just wanted to post it on a recent article so you’d be more likely to see it I guess

    I have been desperately searching for Matte pastel eyeshadow
    I cannot seem to find any!!
    The closest I have gotten is Illamasqua’s creep which is a lovely matte pastel lilacy color
    But other than that, nothing.

    Even a little bit of shimmer would be ok though
    Dior garden pastels are a little too shimmer though

    Do you know of any brands with matte or slightly shimmery pastels?
    OR just pastels at all??

    Thank you for your help in advance!

  7. Natt

    To me this line is remind me of mac mineralize charged water line. Can anyone compare this?? Mac is half the price.

  8. K.

    Amen to the lack of ingredient lists available online!

    I have sensitive skin so before buying anything, I would like to ascertain as to whether the product is suitable for me (i.e. does it contain any ingredients I’m allergic to). Unfortunately, it takes quite some time before I’m able to locate ingredient lists for not just skincare products but cosmetics too.

  9. Mandi

    Drives me bananas when companies dont list ingredients. You have to email them and wait days/weeks to get a response back. When they hide ingredients I assume its because it has ingredients that are not good or there is just so many. BAD marketing, imo. Dont they realize, customers when they are interested in something they are more likely to buy it at that time (instant gratification), but often change there mind after a few days. Thank you for the review and love your blog! :)

  10. Nar

    I use the tinted moisturizer version of this and I love it. I have very dry skin and sometimes use EA 8 hour cream on my face before makeup (which, incidentally, this smells like). It’s pretty heavy so I wouldn’t recommend it for anything other than very dry skin, but for my poor, flaky winter skin it’s a life saver.

  11. karen gonzalez

    the one thing that pains me is the fact that it is in a jar. air exposure reduces the efficiency of some ingredients, and it also means that you get bacteria from your fingers transfered into the product. I bought this once, and liked it (but did no love it). the point is, i can find something better to spend that much money on.

  12. Val

    I rosacea and uber sensitive skin! i can only use a physical type sunscreen like zinc! I’m always looking a the ingriedents like crazy! I have to say I actually like CerVae and its really cheap! But I do like Bobby Brown products as a whole! :)

  13. kim

    fiance? congratulations!

  14. It really looks gooey and might really last for a long time. But how about for those with different kinds of skin types? Will it have a different effect?