Monday, May 19th, 2008

EXUVIANCE is a brand I was recently able to check out, and one of my favorite products amongst the three I tried was their CoverBlend, which is a “concealing treatment makeup” that has SPF20 and is designed to really hide any skin imperfections from tone to ine lines. It is a smudge-resistant cream that lasts throughout the day. It is also water-resistant and non-creasing, which makes it great for even oilier skin types.

I can definitely appreciate a waterproof foundation in the summer months, just on the fact that I’m outdoors, and even if I’m not, I’m likely to sweat between the car and my destination anyway. Something that won’t break down immediately is so appreciated! I don’t know if I’d necessarily sport it to the beach and expect to walk out of the ocean with flawless foundation despite it being water-resistant, though. I interpret water-resistant to simply mean that you can splash your face without any noticeable damage, which is all I really need!

It comes in fourteen shades, and I always point out the availability based on range because it allows for more people to find an appropriate shade that matches them. And I bet you think this is pricey (I don’t know about you, but “Exuviance” as a name conjurs up connotations of luxury!), but it isn’t–get CoverBlend for only $22.50!

I also tried their Evening Restorative Complex ($30.50), as well as the Vespera Bionic Serum ($55.00). I really felt like the serum woke up my face, which is probably the result of all of the anti-oxidants found within this serum. Like most serums, it is pricier because it has more “good” ingredients. Serums are more intense than regular creams, they’re usually in a higher conentrate of the active or helpful ingredients.

Their Evening Restorative Complex was gentle enough for me to use on my skin without any problems, and it has a light scent of apple-citrus that is tolerable. It’s harder for me to judge the effectiveness of this product as I don’t have too many noticeable fine lines or wrinkles. I like that they label this as “Evening”, though, because nothing is better than when a brand takes the guess work out of skincare!

Learn more about or purchase Exuviance products at http://exuviance.com/.

Monday, May 19th, 2008

Suki Complexion Brightening Cream ($45.50) is an intensive face cream that brightens, moisturizes, and reduces puffiness. It contains time-released vitamin C as its primary antioxidant that works to stimulate collagen production, increase skin elasticity, and suppress sun damage. It contains pure rose wax to help hydrate along with shea butter, and it also reduces puffiness. This brightening cream is meant to brighten complexion, including dark circles and sun spots. The cream has a light herbal scent that’s pleasing (not one of those organic products that smells like a compost heap!), so you feel like you’re using something fresh and clean on your face.

It comes in a pump-bottle, which I love, because it means no opening the bottle to let light in nor fingers dipping into the product. However, it does come in a glass container, and while the label covers most of it, it does allow for some light to come in. (Light can often destroy certain ingredients and render your product less effective!).  Edit:  I spoke with the brand, and they actually considered packaging and whether or not to use glass or plastic–they determined that glass would not deteriorate their product for 24 months.  So color me informed!  While this on the pricier side, the good news is that you only need one or two pumps, which is less than a dime-size, to cover your entire face, so you can get a lot of usage out of a single bottle.

I noticed my skin reacted well to this product as my complexion looked brighter, a little more of a natural glow, and I didn’t find it burned my sensitive skin (at the time I was testing, my skin was going nutso and most of my staple creams were causing me to bite my lip and scream OW OW OW!) Plus, the product does sink in and absorb pretty quickly, which is always a plus in my book–anything to save time!

Learn more at www.sukipure.com.

Monday, May 5th, 2008

Avon Anew Ultimate Contouring Eye System ($30.00)

You know what I like, I like an anti-aging product that takes the guesswork out of your skincare routine. There is nothing like a product that commits itself to either AM, PM, or both. Of course, skincare gurus can identify when products should be used, but let’s face it–skincare is a vast world that is confusing and ever-changing for the rest of us (which includes me).

This is a nifty system is actually two products stacked on top of each other. The top piece is the Concentrated Elixir that is kind of like a serum (in its marketing for intensity as well as texture), and it is to be used at night on under eye area, over the Intensive Repair Cream. When you unscrew the Concentrated Elixir, it reveals the Intensive Repair Cream, which is to be used both AM and PM.

I couldn’t speak much to the results, as I am still blessed with youthful skin, so I don’t have much to go off of. I did notice that my eyes felt a little uplifted/lighter. I do think that this product will be better for those in the 30s than those in the late 40s and 50s, because it is likely to have better results on newly created fine lines and superficial lines than defined wrinkles.

Find it at www.avon.com.

Monday, April 21st, 2008

SPF30+ with moisturizer | These are products that have SPF 30 or higher and are also meant to hydrate the skin (so a two-in-one product).

philosophy ‘shelter’ tinted spf 30 sunblock ($20.00) contains:

  • Octinoxate 7.5% (UVB)
  • Octisalate 5.0% (UVB)
  • Oxybenzone 5.0% (s-UVA)
  • Titanium Dioxide 1.2% (UVB/UVA)*

Lancôme Sôleil Ultra Expert Sun Care Face Cream SPF 50 ($31.50) contains:

  • Octinoxate 7.5% (UVB)
  • Octisalate 5.0% (UVB)
  • Octocrylene 7.0% (UVB)
  • Oxybenzone 6.0% (s-UVA)
  • Titanium Dioxide 5.81% (UVB/UVA)*

Peter Thomas Roth Max Sheer All Day Defense Moisture Lotion – SPF 30 ($42.00) contains:

  • Octyl Methoxycinnamate (UVB)
  • Avobenzone (UVA)
  • Octyl Salicylate (UVB)
  • Benzophenone-3 (s-UVA)

Laura Gellar Moisture Compound SPF 30 ($25.00) contains:

  • Avobenzone 3% (UVA)
  • Octinoxate 7.5% (UVB)
  • Octisalate 5% (UVB)

Dermalogica Extra Rich Faceblock spf30 ($48.00) contains:

  • Homosalate 6.5% (UVB)
  • Octinoxate 7.5% (UVB)
  • Octisalate 5.0% (UVB)
  • Oxybenzone 4.0% (s-UVA)
  • Zinc Oxide 2.3% (UVA)

* Titanium dioxide is only shown to protect up to 385nm for UVA, while the range for damage is up to 400nm. Industry standard considers it to still be a broad spectrum UVA ingredient, but we wanted to note this so you can decide for yourself.

Make sure you check out our introduction to sunscreen here. These products are typically available at Nordstrom.com or Sephora.com.

Sunday, April 20th, 2008

SPF30+ | These are products currently available that offer SPF 30 or higher but do not fall into the category of water-resistant or moisturizing (at least not marketed as such).

Prescriptives ‘All-Weather Friend’ Daily Sun Protection SPF 40 ($26.50) contains:

  • Octinoxate 7.5% (UVB)
  • Titanium dioxide 5.0% (UVB/UVA)*

Elemis ‘Liquid Layer’ Sunblock SPF 30 ($39.00) contains:

  • Titanium dioxide 7.0% (UVB/UVA)*

Osmotics Age Prevention Protection Extreme SPF 40 ($45.00) contains:

  • Zinc Oxide (UVA)
  • Octinoxate (UVB)
  • Octisalate (UVB)

Clinique Super City Block Oil-Free Daily Face Protector SPF 40 ($16.50) contains:

  • Titanium dioxide 6.0% (UVB/s-UVA)*
  • Zinc Oxide 8.0% (UVA)

Clarins UV Plus ($39.00) contains:

  • Titanium dioxide (UVB/UVA)*

Dermalogica solar defense booster spf30 ($43.00) contains:

  • Avobenzone 3.0% (UVA)
  • Octinoxate 7.5% (UVB)
  • Octisalate 5.0% (UVB)
  • Oxybenzone 5.0% (s-UVA)

* Titanium dioxide covers the UVA spectrum up to 385nm, but the UVA range that is damaging goes up to 400nm; industry standard considers it to still be a broad spectrum coverage, but we wanted to note it here so you can decide.

Make sure you check out our introduction to sunscreen here. These products are typically available at Nordstrom.com or Sephora.com.

Saturday, April 19th, 2008

SPF30+ and Water Resistant | This is a look at some of the products available with SPF30 or higher that are marketed as water-resistant. Remember that water-resistant doesn’t mean you can swim for six hours and not worry about it! Re-application is crucial. If you’re in the water for more than 30-45 minutes, you’ll likely need to re-apply for maximum protection.

MD Skincare Powerful Sun Protection SPF 45 ($42.00) contains:

  • Oxybenzone (s-UVA)
  • Octinoxate (UVB)
  • Octisalate (UVB)
  • Zinc Oxide (UVA)

Korres Watermelon Sunscreen Face Cream SPF 30 ($28.00) contains:

  • Octocrylene (UVB)
  • Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate (UVB)
  • Titanium dioxide (s-UVA)
  • Zinc Oxide (UVA)

Clinique UV-Response Face SPF 50 ($15.50) contains:

  • Homosalate 10% (UVB)
  • Octinoxate 7.5% (UVB)
  • Oxybenzone 5.0% (s-UVA)
  • Octisalate 5% (UVB)
  • Avobenzone 3% (UVA)

Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protection Cream for Face SPF 55 PA+++ ($33.00) contains:

  • Octinoxate 7.4% (UVB)
  • Zinc Oxide 13.9% (UVA)

Dermalogica super sensitive faceblock spf30 ($45.00)

  • Titanium dioxide 6.7% (UVB/s-UVA)
  • Zinc Oxide 9.2% (UVA)

Make sure you check out our introduction to sunscreen here. These products are typically available at Nordstrom.com or Sephora.com.