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.
bareMinerals Purely Nourishing Moisturizer
bareMinerals Purely Nourishing Moisturizer
bareMinerals Purely Nourishing Moisturizer ($28.00 for 1.7 oz.) is a lightweight lotion for daily moisturizing needs. The scent is the same as the rest of the product range–a subtle herbal scent. I don’t find the scent heavy, obtrusive, or noticeable. It’s available in two sub-formulas: one for combination skin and another for normal to dry skin. I started using the Combination initially, because the Normal to Dry launched later, but once it did launch, I switched, since it seemed more appropriate for my skin type.
Ingredients in Normal to Dry: Water/Aqua/Eau, Pentylene Glycol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Acacia Decurrens/Jojoba/Sunflower Seed Wax/ Polyglyceryl-3 Esters, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Zea Mays (Corn) Oil, Hydrogenated Palm Kernel Glycerides, Glyceryl Stearate, Cetyl Alcohol, Soil Minerals, Ceramide Np, Ceramide Ns, Ceramide Ap, Ceramide Eos, Ceramide Eop, Spilanthes Acmella Flower Extract, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Chlorella Vulgaris Extract, Leucojum Aestivum Bulb Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Retinyl Palmitate, Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Tocopherol, Macadamia Integrifolia Seed Oil, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil, Beta-Carotene, Sodium Cocoyl Alaninate, Castoryl Maleate, Hydrolyzed Algin, Sea Water, Glycerin, Lavendula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Lavandula Hybridia (Lavandin) Oil, Anthemis Nobilis Flower Oil, Caproyl Phytosphingosine, Caproyl Sphingosine, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Hydrogenated Palm Glycerides, Behenic Acid, Cholesterol, Peg-75 Stearate, Melia Azadirachta Leaf Extract, Melia Azadirachta Flower Extract, Steareth-20, Sodium Benzoate, Chlorphenesin, Carbomer, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Hydroxide, Ceteth-20, Ceteareth-25, Limonene, Disodium Edta, Coccinia Indica Fruit Extract, Linalool, Xanthan Gum
I used both variations at night time, because the range does not currently have SPF in it (I think enough people have clamored for it, so we’ll probably see it roll out sooner rather than later). I loved the Purely Nourishing Cream for Dry Skin, because it worked well as a night cream on my dry skin. Normal to Dry didn’t hydrate as well as the cream did, which I expected. If this had SPF in it, I would definitely consider using it during the day time, when I prefer a lighter weight product. It works better for my skin during the summer, so I think it’s a better fit for normal skin rather than dry. I didn’t notice any differences in hydration between either formula, though. I didn’t feel less hydrated by using the Combination (which one might have expected) but the same.
The formula is really lightweight, which is my favorite part about it, and it dries down within a minute. It spreads easily across the skin without feeling like you need gobs of the stuff for good coverage. It comes in a convenient skinny cylinder with a pump for easy and sanitary application. I love pumps, because you can figure out just how much you need and stick with that amount each time. I’d consider repurchasing as a daytime moisturizer if they included SPF, but I’d rather use the Cream for Dry Skin at night time based on my skin needs.
Ingredients in Combination: Water/Aqua/Eau, Dicaprylyl Carbonate, Cocoglycerides, Jojoba Esters, Behenyl Alcohol, Sorbitan Stearate, Cetyl Alcohol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Glycerin, Soil Minerals, Propanediol, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Lecithin, Retinyl Palmitate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Sterols, Linoleic Acid, Phospholipids, Honey, Panthenol, Sucrose Cocoate, Lonicera Japonica (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Lavendula Hybrida Oil, Lavendula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Extract, Punica Granatum Sterols, Tamarindus Indica Seed Polysaccharide, Trehalose, Sodium Hyaluronate, Acacia Dealbata Flower/Stem Extract, Aspalathus Linearis Extract, Anthemis NobIlis Flower Oil, Aspalathus Linearis Leaf Extract, Camellia Oleifera Leaf Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matracaria) Flower Extract, Coffea Arabica (Coffee) Seed Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Spiraea Ulmaria Extract, Centella Asiatica Leaf Extract, Myrothamnus Flabellifolia Leaf/Stem Extract, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Tocopherol, Benzyl Alcohol, Polysorbate 60, Limonene, Carbomer, Dehydroacetic Acid, Butylene Glycol, Linalool, Microcrystalline Cellulose, Xanthan Gum, Cellulose Gum
BareMinerals Purely Nourishing Cream
Bare Escentuals Bare Minerals Purely Nourishing Cream
Bare Escentuals Purely Nourishing Cream for Dry Skin ($28.00 for 1.7 oz.) worked so well with my normal-to-dry skin in the spring. I used it as my evening cream for about two months (which I finished at that point), though I definitely doubled up on usage a few times and used this as my morning moisturizer on days when I knew I was staying home.
It’s thick and creamy, feels rich without being heavy, but absorbs quickly and doesn’t leave any greasy feel behind. My skin felt hydrated and lush; like it had a little extra spring in it because it was fully moisturized. Like the rest of the new skincare range, it has a very subtle herbal-ish scent; a little lavender, a little earthiness. It’s not a fragrance, though; it seems like the ingredients coming through but nothing added. It’s always interesting when you try out a product, finish it, switch to something else, and that is when you realize just how much it had done for your skin.
I’m seriously this close to buying another jar, because the combination of products I’m using right now isn’t cutting it with California’s wacky weather and my skin is dying for some real hydration. I’m rotating in their Purely Nourishing Lotion with SPF 15 in this week, so I’m hoping for good results from that since I’ve been suitably impressed with the line so far. The price is right, quantity is good, and the product itself is excellent. Sure, I’d love an airless pump, but otherwise, there’s nothing I don’t like about it.
ingredients: Water/Aqua/Eau, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Squalane, Glycerin, Sorbitan Stearate, Behenyl Alcohol, Stearyl Alcohol, Sorbitol, Dimethicone, Hydroxypropyl Starch Phosphate, Isopropyl Palmitate, Propanediol, Soil Minerals, Phenoxyethanol, Sorbityl Laurate, Jojoba Alcohol, Isopropyl Jojobate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Jojoba Esters, Hydrolyzed Viola Tricolor Extract (Viola Tricolor), Xanthan Gum, Linseed Oil/Palm Oil Aminopropanediol Esters, Sodium Hexametaphosphate, Sodium Citrate, Potassium Hydroxide, Trisodium Edta, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil (Glycine Soja), Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil (Persea Gratissima), Citric Acid, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil (Vitis Vinifera), Punica Granatum Seed Oil (Punica Granatum), Lavandula Hybrida Oil (Lavandula Hybrida), Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil (Lavandula Angustifolia), Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Butter (Simmondsia Chinensis), Linalool, Salicornia Herbacea Extract (Salicornia Herbacea), Butylene Glycol, Fagus Sylvatica Bud Extract (Fagus Sylvatica), Hydrogenated Jojoba Oil, Tocopherol, Ascorbic Acid, Iron Oxides (Ci 77491), Tocopheryl Acetate, Anthemis Nobilis Flower Oil (Anthemis Nobilis), Iron Oxides (Ci 77492), Averrhoa Carambola Leaf Extract (Averrhoa Carambola).
Benefit Triple Performing Facial Emulsion
Benefit Triple Performing Facial Emulsion SPF 15 PA++ ($28.00 for 1.7 fl. oz.) is a new moisturizer from Benefit’s b.right! Radiant Skincare line. It’s designed to be lightweight while being oil-free. This moisturizer does have SPF 15 in it, and it uses chemical sunscreens (Octinoxate, Avobenzone, Octocrylene, and Sulisobenzone).
my skin type: I have normal-to-dry skin that tends to be drier in the winter months but more normal during the rest of the year. I have minor breakouts with the occasional cystic acne spot that seem to be related to hormones/stress (and not typically products). I have some fine lines around my eyes but am not currently concerned about anti-aging (beyond religious use of sunscreen and generally taking care of my skin).
It is a simple moisturizer–it hydrates without leaving behind any greasiness, and it dries down within a few minutes so a semi-matte finish. The consistency is very thin–think a lightweight lotion–and a bit watery, though not runny. It’s housed in a glass bottle with a “cork” (not actually made out of cork) cap that you pull off to reveal a pump dispenser.
Unlike Stay Don’t Stray, which killed me with its pump, this pump works marvelously. I find I use anywhere from five to six pumps per use. What I like about pumps is you can figure out how many you need and be consistent with your usage–plus it’s more hygienic. The glass bottle is lovely without being too heavy.
I’ve been using this for about four weeks, but I’m too sensitive to the scent of the product to continue using it personally. It has a very strong floral scent with some sweetness. To me, it is the scent I smell when I know my allergies are going to go haywire. I catch whiffs of it throughout the day and find it a little cloying. I’m not normally that sensitive to scents in products, and I wouldn’t consider my nose an excellent sensory device either–but I still detect this hours later. It seems to turn more sickeningly sweet as the day goes on. Scent is immensely personal, and for those who prefer subtle to no fragrance in their skin care, I would avoid this. For those who don’t mind scented skincare, it’s still worth checking out and deciding whether it’s a scent you enjoy or not.
good for: I would recommend it to normal-to-oily skin types, because it is such a lightweight moisturizer that it’s not going to provide enough hydratoin for drier skin types. I noticed that on my drier days (when I started using it, which was closer to winter), it didn’t quite seem like enough, but it was usually just fine.
final thoughts: Despite finding it unsuitable to me personally, I don’t think taking away points for scent (just because the scent doesn’t appeal to me) would be a fair assessment of the product. I’ve disclaimed it, my feelings on the fragrance, and it’s something personal enough that individual users will have to determine how that factor weighs in. It’s a nice lightweight moisturizer that spreads easily, moisturizes well on normal-to-oily skin types without feeling heavy or greasy.
where to buy: Sephora
Bobbi Brown Hydrating Gel Cream
Bobbi Brown Hydrating Gel Cream
Bobbi Brown Hydrating Gel Cream ($50.00 for 1.7 oz.) is an incredibly moisturizing cream with the texture of a gel/cream hybrid but all of the hallmarks of a water-based gel. It absorbs within a coupleof minutes, and it never feels greasy or heavy. I have normal-to-dry skin, and especially in the fall/winter, I do tend towards moderately dry. I used this for a month and a half (usually both in the morning and evening, which is why I finished it so quickly), and my skin drank it in.
It wore beautifully under makeup, because it dries down to a near matte finish and doesn’t have any slip, slide, or residual greasiness after application. The texture is more like a cream than gel, but it lacks the density of cream, so it also lacks the heaviness when applied–it has a comfortably lightweight feel. I was so pleased that it worked well in the mornings, though, because it is often the easiest for me to tell just how enduring a moisturizer is–some will leave my skin feeling parched by early afternoon, but this moisturizer worked around the clock. The Hydrating Gel Cream comes in a screw-top jar made out of a hard plastic. It has a clean scent–light herbal-citrus; just very fresh and subtle.
ingredients: Water, Capric Triglyceride, Tribehenin Peg-20 Esters, Butylene Glycol, Cyclohexasiloxane, Glycerin, Glyceryl Stearate, Dimethicone, Imperata Cylindrica Root Extract, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender), Elettaria Cardamomum (Cardamom), Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary), Rosa Canina (Rose) Fruit Oil, Coriandrum Sativum (Coriander) Seed Oil, Jasminum Officinale (Jasmine), Cholesterol, Trehalose, Hydroxyproline, Proline, Caprylyl Glycol, Phytosphingosine, Phytantriol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Cyclopentasiloxane, Acrylates Copolymer, Linoleic Acid, Dimethiconol, PEG-8, Sodium Hyaluronate, Tocopherol, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Glycine, Sodium Carbomer, Ascorbic Acid, Xanthan Gum, Sodium Citrate, Phenoxyethanol
By the by, are we not in the year 2011? Isn’t it about time beauty brands started listing ingredients online? I’m so beyond frustrated when I inquire via email/live chat only to be told to call some 1-800 number. Really — you think the best way to handle this is reading off a laundry list of hard-to-pronounce ingredients?
final thoughts: I love this for morning or evening, really. It makes for an excellent daytime moisturizer (assuming you use a separate SPF, of course!) for those with drier skin types that don’t want to wear a heavy cream underneath their makeup. For those with oilier skin with drier patches or still want a more hydrating moisturizer for the evening (but without the heaviness of true evening creams), I think this would work quite nicely. This moisturizer strikes a good balance between hydration and texture.
where to buy: Bobbi Brown
Fresh Soy Face Cream
Skincare: Fresh Soy Face Cream
Fresh Soy Face Cream ($38.00 for 1.7 oz.) is a lightweight face cream that moisturizes skin without leaving behind any greasy residue. To me, this feels and acts like a no-frills face cream, but it has a surprising amount of ingredients designed to hydrate and freshen the skin.
what it’s supposed to do: It is a paraben-free daily moisturizer for all skin types. It is enriched with moisture-retaining amino acids and protective antioxidants to hydrate and smooth the skin. Provides essential daily moisture while soothing, protecting, and firming the skin. It is scientifically demonstrated to have significant, long-term moisturizing and restorative effects on the skin. The lightweight, fast-absorbing formula can be worn alone or under makeup.
It took me about a month and a half to get through an entire tube, and I used it as my AM moisturizer. My skin type is normal-to-dry, and when I was using this, it was early fall, so my skin was closer to normal. I found this kept my skin perfectly hydrated throughout the day, and I loved how thick and rich it felt when I first applied but then how quickly it absorbed.
There are a few ingredients in the cream that work to give skin a better appearance but not in the vein of delivering you newborn baby skin–it includes rosewater and cucumber extract, both of wihch help to balance/restore skin while calming irritation/redness. There is also meadowfoam and jojoba seed oils that amp up hydration. I felt like this came in handy after doing several cheek swatches–always made my skin feel better about itself.
ingredients: Water, Neopentyl Glycol Diheptanoate, Stearic Acid, PPG-2 Myristyl Ether Propionate, Limnanthes Alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Maltooligosyl Glucoside, Fragrance (Parfum), Polyglyceryl-10 Distearate, Sucrose Polysoyate, C14-22 Alcohols, Sea Water (Maris Aqua), Hydrogenated Starch Hydrolysate, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Rosa Damascena Flower Water, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Sterols, Aspalathus Linearis Leaf Extract, Retinyl Palmitate, Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, Tocopherol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Jojoba Alcohol, Potassium Jojobate, Behenyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, Acrylamide/Ammonium Acrylate Copolymer, Lecithin, Butylene Glycol, Caprylyl Glycol, C12-20 Alkyl Glucoside, Polyisobutene, Benzoic Acid, Ethylhexylglycerin, Hexylene Glycol, Sodium Polyacrylate, Sorbitan Isostearate, Polysorbate 20, Maltodextrin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Pentylene Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Limonene, Linalool, Citronellol, Citral, Geraniol.
It has this fresh scent of cucumbers and rose with a little citrus. It smells natural to me–not synthetic, not flowery–and I liked it personally. It comes in a squeeze-tube, which I liked, because it made it convenient to dispense and hygenic to use.
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- Product: 28/30
- Value: 8/10
- Ease of Use: 4/5
- Packaging: 4/5
final thoughts: I liked this a lot–I would definitely consider purchasing it again in the future. There was enough richness to keep my skin hydrated during the day, but it absorbed into the skin in a minute or less, and so it made for an excellent base under makeup, too.
where to buy: Sephora