Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation

Product:  Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation.  If you don’t like to feel like you are wearing makeup, this high-definition foundation may spoil you from ever wearing anything else.

Overall Rating = 4 stars4 Stars – Excellent

Cost: $62.00 (1.0 fl. oz.) ($62 per fluid ounce)  Price Category: Expensive

Sold By:  KohGenDo; Nordstrom; Sephora.

Container:  Glass bottle with pump, outer plastic cap, paper carton.

Description:  If you are not familiar with Koh Gen Do, this is another Japanese company.  I don’t know what it is with companies from Japan, but they have some exceptional products.  The line was formulated for use in the film industry and the entire product line functions well under the rigors of long hours on movie sets and flaw-enhancing high-definition cameras.  I have been using this line for over a decade.  I was introduced to the line on the set of a TV show and became an instant fan.

Formula:  Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation is a lightweight cream.  The formula provides light-coverage opacity and dries to a slightly velvety finish.  It feels silky to the touch and is hydrating.  The product was reformulated a few years ago and the bottle used to state that the SPF was 15.  The SPF is no longer listed, but it still contains Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide, so there is sun protection in the formula.  Please note that the ingredients listed on Sephora are the old formula and are not current or correct.

Sensitivity:  Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation is free from fragrance, mineral oil, parabens, phthalates, sulfates, and synthetic pigments and is appropriate for those with sensitive skin.

Animal Friendly:  The brand is cruelty-free and does not test on animals.

Company Claims:

“Designed to give skin the same youthful glow you experience right after a facial, Aqua Foundation’s long-wearing liquid formula instantly illuminates dull skin. Formulated with light-diffusing minerals to brighten and minimize pores, this lightweight serum foundation contains weightless skin-conditioning emollients that improve the hydration and health of skin for a flawless and comfortable complexion all day.

  • Nourishes skin with minerals from the deep waters of Bretagne
  • Contains soft focus pigments to brighten while reducing the appearance of pores and discoloration
  • Contains T3 Oil—our signature blend of jojoba oil, olive squalane and shea butter—to leave skin soft and supple
  • For all skin types
  • Sheer to medium buildable coverage
  • Natural, dewy finish

Discussion:  The Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation feels so light on the skin you can’t imagine that it is going to actually do anything to make your skin look better, yet somehow it does.  If you like a full-coverage makeup, this is definitely not the one for you.  This is for people who don’t want to look or feel like they are wearing any makeup on their skin.  If you like a “no makeup” natural makeup look, this foundation is one of the best to accomplish that look.  If you typically wear BB creams or tinted moisturizers you may love the feel of this.

Colors:  Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation comes in seven colors: 002-Cool; 012-Cool; 013-Cool; 113-Warm; 123-Warm; 143-Warm; and 213-Warm.  The cool tones have a slightly pink undertone.  If you prefer a neutral, ivory or yellow undertone, go with one of the warm shades.  Because the coverage is so light and it blends into the skin, the shades are pretty forgiving.  If you have very deep skin, there is not going to be a color in this foundation dark enough for you.  The shades are only for fair to medium-tan skin tones.

Shade Descriptions (In my experience):

002: Very pale beige for fair skin with a slight pink undertone

012: Very light beige for fair skin with a definite pink undertone

013: Light beige for fair to light skin with a neutral to pink undertone

113: Light beige for light skin with a neutral undertone

123: Beige for light to medium skin with a warm yellow undertone

143: Dark warm beige to light tan for medium to tan skin with a yellow undertone

213: Medium beige for light to medium skin with a neutral to yellow undertone

Morning Review:  I have used several bottles of this over the years, so I’m not new to this product.  For purposes of this review, after cleansing, I applied the Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation to bare skin.  (If I’m using this on a client or on set, I’d definitely apply primer first.)  There is no odor of any kind.  It disappears into my skin, makes pores appear smaller, and offers a light blurring coverage.  My freckles still show through but they aren’t obvious.  My skin feels softer and hydrated after application.  One pump is enough for a spot application; two pumps are required for full-face coverage.

Application Tips:  I applied this with fingers, a foundation brush and a blender sponge to see which worked the best.  I liked the finish the best with a flat-head foundation brush, but this foundation is fool proof and looks good no matter how you apply it.  If you don’t have a brush, just use your fingers.  If you have oily or combination skin, you will definitely want to set this with powder.  This dries to a natural, slightly velvety finish.  It takes a couple of minutes to set up completely.

Evening Review:  On my dry skin, Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation looked good for about 7-8 hours without any oxidation or color change.  It never cracked and my skin stayed hydrated all day.  My testers with consistent skin and combination skin got 6-7 hours of wear.  My tester with oily skin needed a touchup in about 4-5 hours.  Of course your results will depend upon many factors and may be different.

Overall Review:  I never wore foundation very often until I discovered Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation.  I don’t like the feeling of anything heavy on my face.  I also don’t like to look like I’m wearing makeup and prefer a more natural look.  Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation allows me to just make my skin look better rather than covered up.  This is also the only foundation I have ever found that I can wear every day that never makes me break out.  If you have been searching for a light weight looking and feeling foundation, this might be the answer.

Additional Information:  If you would like a little more coverage, you may prefer the Koh Gen Do Moisture Foundation which is slightly heavier and offers more of a medium coverage.  The Koh Gen Do Moisture Foundation also offers deeper colors and a greater twelve-color shade range.  If you would like to try either foundation, you can get samples for $3.75-$4.00 directly from the website with free shipping.  You will also receive a $10.00 discount coupon with your purchase of the samples that you can apply to a full-size bottle if you like it.

Here is the link to the samples page:  Koh Gen Do Foundation Samples

Pros:

  • Professional quality
  • Skin-nourishing ingredients
  • Light coverage blurs skin imperfections
  • Skin looks natural and not heavy
  • Quick and easy to use
  • Blends flawlessly
  • Good for those with allergies and sensitivities to fragrances, mineral oil, and other irritating chemicals
  • Pump keeps product sanitary

Cons:

  • Price
  • Some darker skin tones may not find a compatible match

Suitability:  Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation is suitable for the following users:

  • All users

RATINGS REPORT:

Morning Rating = 5 stars5 Stars;

Evening Rating = 5 stars5 Stars;

Average from Other Testers = 4 stars4 Stars;

Value Rating = 2 stars2 Stars;

Overall Rating = 4 stars4 Stars = Excellent.

Would Buy Again?  Yes. (If I can afford it.)

(Please review the About 365 Cosmetic Reviews page for the rating info.)

Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation Bottle BoxKoh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation Pump

Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation Color Shade Chart

Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation Color 113

Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation Color 113

Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation Color 113

Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation Color 113

INGREDIENTS:  WATER, CYCLOPENTASILOXANE, TITANIUM DIOXIDE, DIPHENYLSILOXY PHENYL TRIMETHICONE, ZINC OXIDE, HDI/TRIMETHYLOL HEXYLLACTONE CROSSPOLYMER, ISONONYL ISONONANOATE, PEG-9 POLYDIMETHYLSILOXYETHYL DIMETHICONE, PENTYLENE GLYCOL, PEG-10 DIMETHICONE, MICA, DIGLYCERIN, SORBITAN SESQUIISOSTEARATE, PHYTOSTERYL/OCTYLDODECYL LAUROYL GLUTAMATE, GLYCERIN, SQUALANE, SORBITAN SESQUIOLEATE, SEA SALT, ALUMINUM HYDROXIDE, ACRYLATES/POLYTRIMETHYL SILOXYMETHACRYLATE COPOLYMER, SODIUM CHLORIDE, SILICA, BUTYLENE GLYCOL, DIMETHICONE, PHENOXYETHANOL, STEARIC ACID, SIMMONDSIA CHINENSIS (JOJOBA) SEED OIL, ALUMINUM DIMYRISTATE, NYLON-12, TALC, ZIRCONIUM DIOXIDE, TOCOPHEROL, LAUROYL LYSINE, POLYMETHYLSILSESQUIOXANE, ISOSTEARYL SEBACATE, ZINC MYRISTATE, ALUMINA, BUTYROSPERMUM PARKII (SHEA) BUTTER, CAMELLIA SINENSIS LEAF EXTRACT, DISODIUM STEAROYL GLUTAMATE, GLYCYRRHIZA GLABRA (LICORICE) ROOT EXTRACT, GLUCOSYL HESPERIDIN, MAGNESIUM ASCORBYL PHOSPHATE, SODIUM HYDROXIDE, BETULA ALBA BARK EXTRACT, KJELLMANIELLA GYRATA EXTRACT, ALPHA-GLUCAN, ALGAE EXTRACT, ALPINIA SPECIOSA LEAF EXTRACT, GLUCOSYL CERAMIDE, HYDROLYZED CONCHIOLIN PROTEIN, ACETYL HEXAPEPTIDE-8, IRON OXIDES.

Important:  Please read our full Disclaimer before using this or any product.

Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder

Product:  Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder.  A makeup artist’s best friend is, and always has been, powder.  This powder blurs away imperfections beautifully.

Overall Rating = 3+ stars3.67 Stars – Very Good to Excellent

Cost: $38.00 (1.0 oz.) ($38.00 per ounce)  Price Category: Expensive

Sold By:  Laura Mercier; Nordstrom; Sephora; Major department stores everywhere.

Container:  Plastic jar, sifter screen, twist-off cap, outer carton.

Description:  Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder is a loose powder used to set foundation makeup for greater longevity and to help minimize fine imperfections.

Formula:  Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder is a tinted loose talc-based powder.  The formula provides very light coverage and controls shine with the addition of corn starch.  The texture is airy, light and silky feeling on the skin.  This also comes in a pressed-powder format for instant touchups or those who don’t like the mess of loose powders.

Sensitivity:  Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder is fragrance free and is suitable for those with sensitive skin.  However, please be aware that this product contains parabens and soybean oil.  If you are allergic to parabens or soybeans, stay away from this one and try the paraben-free, dye-free, oil-free Laura Mercier Translucent Invisible Setting Powder which also works very well but is not quite as silky feeling.

Company Claims:

“Set your makeup with this perfectly sheer, silky powder. Ideal for normal-to-oily skin of virtually every tone.

What is Translucent Loose Setting Powder

With multiple major awards and counting, Laura Mercier’s “best in beauty”, cult-favorite bestseller is your go-to setting powder. Loose powder feels luxuriously dense in the jar, feels incredibly soft and silky-light on your skin. Pros love the super smooth application: goes on evenly, blends effortlessly, provides great wear. Sets makeup without adding weight or texture.

Modern Matte Finish

Creates a modern matte finish with a touch of sheer coverage. The translucent shades work on virtually all skin tones.

Soft-Focus Effect for a More Flawless Look

Like all Laura Mercier Setting Powders, it has a soft-focus effect that subtly blurs the look of fine lines and imperfections. Doesn’t settle into fine lines or pores and never looks cakey.

Formulation Details

Oil-free (NOT TRUE). Non-comedogenic. Non-caking. Dermatologically tested.”

Discussion:  Makeup artists have always used loose powder to set foundation, blur imperfections and give makeup a soft matte finish.  Powder only came in loose form for many decades before the pressed powder compact was invented.  Powders were pretty much all the same and were talc based until about 20 years ago.  The invention of high-definition cameras completely changed the need for high-definition makeup.  Suddenly, you could see every line, blemish and pore on an actor’s face and they weren’t happy.  It took a while for makeup to catch up to the needs of the industry.

One of the first changes we began to see was the invention of finely-milled micronized powders and the addition and replacement of ingredients.  Silica and minerals began to be added to reflect light, and in some instances, talc has been completely eliminated in powders.  The formulations require chemists to work tirelessly to come up with new formulas to keep up with the demands of this ever-changing industry.

What makes this powder special is that it was specifically designed for use in the print industry.  Laura Mercier, a professional makeup artist, understood what needed to change to make powder less visible by high-definition cameras.  Ms. Mercier got it right with this one and it quickly became a favorite product of professional makeup artists everywhere.

Colors:  Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder comes in two colors that work for virtually all skin tones: Translucent is for very fair to medium skin tones;  Translucent Medium Deep is for tan to deep skin tones.

Daily Review:  This is an excellent powder to use for “baking” foundation.  Pour a very small amount of powder into the lid of the jar.  As a last step after makeup has been completed, apply Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder with either a powder brush or a velour puff.  I like to press the powder onto the face with the velour puff and then brush it off with a good-quality soft powder brush.  A little goes a long way with this powder and you don’t need much.  This feels silky to the touch and gives the skin a soft radiant finish like matte satin.

Helpful Tips and Tricks:

  • If you have asthma, always be sure to hold your breath while applying loose powder to prevent inhalation of the powder.
  • If applying with a brush, be sure to tap out the excess prior to application to avoid getting too much product onto the face.
  • If you are wearing any type of creams (blushes, contours, highlighters) make sure you are happy with those before applying this powder. Once the powder is on, you can’t go back and blend any cream products.
  • For additional longevity to your makeup use a setting spray on top of this powder.

Overall Review:  Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder is an industry-standard product.  This is a staple in a lot of professional makeup artists’ kits.

Pros:

  • Professional quality results
  • Finish does not look dull or cakey
  • Light tinted coverage helps to blur skin issues
  • No white “flash back” in photos
  • Makes foundation last longer
  • Fragrance-free formula
  • Silky texture

Cons:

  • Not appropriate for those with paraben or soybean allergies
  • Does not come with the velour puff or any type of applicator

Suitability:  Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder is suitable for the following users:

  • Consistent Skin
  • Combination Skin
  • Dry Skin (While the company does not state it is for dry skin, I have used it on dry skin for many years with excellent results.)
  • Somewhat Oily Skin (Seriously oily skin with do better with the Laura Mercier Invisible Setting Powder.)
  • All sexes  (I use this on men with excellent results.)
  • Not for use by those with paraben or soybean allergies

RATINGS REPORT:

Daily Rating = 4 stars4 Stars;

Average from Other Testers = 5 stars5 Stars;

Value Rating = 2 stars2 Stars;

Overall Rating = 3+ stars3.67 Stars = Very Good to Excellent.

Would Buy Again?  Yes.

(Please review the About 365 Cosmetic Reviews page for the rating info.)Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder Box

Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting PowderLaura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder Reverse

Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder Velour Puff Sold Separately

Laura Mercier Velour Puff Sold Separately

Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder Light to Medium Color

Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder Light to Medium Color

Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder Medium to Deep Color

Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder Medium to Deep Color

Ingredients:  Talc, Magnesium Myristate, Nylon-12, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, EthylhexylPalmitate, Zea Mays (Corn) Starch, Sodium Dehydroacetate, Methylparaben, Lauroyl Lysine, Propylparaben, Polymethyl Methacrylate, Butylparaben, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Tocopherol, Methicone. May contain: Ultramarines (Cl 77007), Iron Oxides (Cl 77491, Cl 77492, Cl 77499).

Important:  Please read our full Disclaimer before using this or any product.

Estée Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup

Product:  Estée Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup for Face and Body.  This is one to reach for when you need serious coverage.

Overall Rating = 3+ stars3.5 Stars – Very Good

Cost: $39.50 (1.0 fl. oz.) ($39.50 per fluid ounce)  Price Category: Expensive

Sold By:  Estée Lauder; Dillard’s; Nordstrom; Sephora; Major department stores everywhere.

Container:  Plastic squeeze tube, twist-off cap, outer carton.

Description:  Estée Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup is a waterproof opaque foundation with a UVA/UVB Broad-Spectrum Sun Protection Factor of 15.  This product replaced the popular product that was discontinued formerly known as, “Estee Lauder Maximum Cover Lightweight Makeup”.

Formula:  Estée Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup is a thick liquid to lightweight cream foundation.  The formula provides full-coverage opacity and dries to a powdery matte finish.  The formula is buildable for even greater coverage.

Sensitivity:  Estée Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup is fragrance free and is suitable for those with sensitive skin.

Company Claims:

“12-hour wear. Natural-looking. Long-wearing.

This soothing liquid-creme makeup is designed to camouflage all skin imperfections, including surgical and acne scars, tattoos, birthmarks, sun spots and varicose veins. Helps protect with SPF 15.

BENEFITS:
Full, concealing coverage. Long-wear.

COVERAGE – Full

FINISH- Matte

FORMULA FACTS

  • Broad Spectrum SPF 15
  • Dermatologist-tested
  • Non-acnegenic; won’t clog pores”

Discussion:  If you like a full-coverage makeup, this one feels light on the skin but covers extremely well.  If you prefer a very light natural-looking or luminous makeup, this one is not for you.  I have fair skin with freckles and my freckles completely disappear when I apply this foundation.  They have a tendency to show through most foundations, but not this one.

Colors:  Estée Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup comes in eight colors:  1N3 Creamy Vanilla; 2C5 Creamy Tan; 2W2 Rattan; 3C4 Medium Deep; 3W1 Tawny; 4N2 Spiced Sand; and 6W1 Sandalwood.  The 1N3 is a good match for my ivory-toned fair skin.  Colors with an “N” are neutral; colors with a “C” are cool; and colors with a “W” are warm.  For those with a very fair porcelain skin the lightest shade may be slightly too dark for you.

Morning Review:  After cleansing, toning, moisturizing and priming, I applied Estée Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup.  If you have oily skin, you should skip the moisturizer, but do not skip the primer.  The primer will help to extend the wear of this foundation.

I have experimented applying this foundation with fingers, a foundation brush and a sponge beauty blender.  It sets up very quickly, so I have found that it works best with a flat-head brush by buffing it on.  If you need thick coverage, fingers will work better.

Helpful Tips and Tricks:

  • Make sure your skin has been recently exfoliated prior to using this foundation, especially if you have dry skin, or it will settle into the dry patches and be difficult to blend.
  • A little goes a long way; don’t apply too much product to your face. Work with small dots of product.
  • It dries very quickly so don’t apply it to your whole face at once; work in small areas at a time.
  • For heavy coverage, apply it with your fingers and pat it on, don’t rub.
  • For lighter coverage, apply it with a foundation brush or damp beauty blender sponge.
  • If you have dry skin, use a moisturizer or moisturizing primer first.
  • As this dries to a powdery finish, do not put any type of creams (blushes, contours, highlighters) on top of this, only powders.  Creams don’t blend well on top of powders.
  • For full waterproof coverage, set it with a fixing spray. I like Luminess, Urban Decay or MAC.

Evening Review:  On my dry skin, Estée Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup does not budge and lasts for 10-12 hours.  When I use this on clients with oily skin, they can expect to get 6-8 hours of wear.  It will come off with regular facial cleanser; it will not rinse off with just plain water.  I have used this on models for outdoor water shoots with very good results.

Overall Review:  Estée Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup offers full coverage without a heavy feel on the skin.  It can be tricky to blend if you try to work on too large of an area.  As long as you work quickly and in small sections, it works extremely well.

Pros:

  • Professional quality results
  • Full coverage hides all types of skin issues and discolorations
  • Moderate Broad-Spectrum UVA/UVB SPF 15
  • Waterproof
  • Fragrance-free formula
  • Skin-friendly ingredients
  • Long lasting

Cons:

  • Dries very quickly so you need to work fast
  • If your skin is extremely fair, there may not be a color light enough.

Suitability:  Estée Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup is suitable for the following users:

  • All users
  • I would not use this on a man unless it was for performance purposes.  It can be difficult to blend over the man’s beard area.

RATINGS REPORT:

Morning Rating = 4 stars4 Stars;

Evening Rating = 4 stars4 Stars;

Average from Other Testers = 4 stars4 Stars;

Value Rating = 2 stars2 Stars;

Overall Rating = 3+ stars3.5 Stars = Very Good.

Would Buy Again?  Yes

(Please review the About 365 Cosmetic Reviews page for the rating info.)

Estee Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup

Estee Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup Color 1N3 Creamy Vanilla

Estee Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup Color 1N3 Creamy Vanilla

Without and With Estee Lauder Double Wear Maximum Cover Camouflage Makeup

Ingredients:  ISODODECANE; ISOHEXADECANE; METHYL METHACRYLATE CROSSPOLYMER; PETROLATUM; GLYCERYL STEARATE; DISTEARDIMONIUM HECTORITE; HYDROGENATED STYRENE/ ISOPRENE COPOLYMER; MICROCRYSTALLINE WAX\CERA MICROCRISTALLINA\CIRE MICROCRISTALLINE; KAOLIN; CHOLESTEROL; ALOE BARBADENSIS LEAF EXTRACT; FUSANUS SPICATUS WOOD OIL; TOCOPHERYL ACETATE; LINOLEIC ACID; GLYCINE SOJA (SOYBEAN) OIL; STEARYL GLYCYRRHETINATE; BISABOLOL; SILICA; PROPYLENE CARBONATE; METHYLDIHYDROJASMONATE; POLYETHYLENE; 2,6-DIMETHYL-7-OCTEN-2-OL; POLYGLYCERYL-3 DIISOSTEARATE; PENTAERYTHRITYL TETRA-DI-T-BUTYL HYDROXYHYDROCINNAMATE; ALUMINA; PHENETHYL ALCOHOL; [+/- IRON OXIDES (CI 77491); IRON OXIDES (CI 77492); IRON OXIDES (CI 77499); TITANIUM DIOXIDE (CI 77891); MICA; BISMUTH OXYCHLORIDE (CI 77163)] <40794>

Important:  Please read our full Disclaimer before using this or any product.

Lancôme Cils Booster Mascara Base

Product:  Lancôme Cils Booster XL Base de Mascara Super-Enhancing Mascara Base.  If you weren’t born with long, full, luscious eyelashes, a lash primer can definitely amp up the volume and make the most of what you have.

Overall Rating = 3+ stars3.5 Stars – Very Good.

Cost:  $25.50 (.18 fl. oz.) ($141.67 per fluid ounce)  Price Category: Expensive

Sold By:  Lancôme USA; Dillard’s; Nordstrom; Sephora; Ulta; Major Dept. stores everywhere.

Container:  Plastic tube with twist-off tapered wand, outer carton.

Description:  Lancôme Cils Booster XL Base de Mascara Super-Enhancing Mascara Base is a primer that is intended to be worn as a base coat under mascara.  As this is white in color, it cannot be worn by itself without looking very strange.

I would not describe this as a wet formula.  It is more of a medium-dry formula.  It has almost no scent other than a faint polymer smell.

Sensitivity:  Lancôme Cils Booster is fragrance-free and I have never experienced any sensitivity issues personally or from clients/testers.  This is suitable those who wear contacts or have sensitive eyes.

Company Claims:  “Give your lashes an XL boost. With just one sweep, this innovative mascara primer glides on and evenly coats and smoothes your lashes to maximize the results of your favorite Lancôme mascara. The magic behind this mascara base is the conditioning formula—featuring micro-fibers and Vitamin E—to add extra length and thickness to your lashes for added visible performance to your mascara.”

Benefits

  • Lengthens and thickens lashes without clumping
  • Maximizes the results of your favorite Lancôme mascara
  • Protects and conditions lashes
  • Smoothes eyelashes by coating them thinly and evenly—emphasizing even the shortest lashes
  • Intensifies color of your favorite mascara

Technology

  • Micro-Fibers
  • D-Panthénol and Vitamin E
  • Triangular, thin-shaped brush
  • Provides a white base for mascara to cover

Discussion:  Mascara primers serve a few purposes:

  • Coat the lashes to increase the diameter making them appear thicker
  • Provide ingredients that promote the health of the eyelashes
  • Act as a first coat of mascara thereby allowing for use of less mascara

Colors:  Lancôme Cils Booster comes in one color, white.

Morning Review:  Before applying mascara, coat both the upper and lower lashes thoroughly with a light coat of Lancôme Cils Booster.

Lancôme Cils Booster definitely makes lashes look thicker.  I would say the emphasis is more on thickness than length.  The company says the product contains micro fibers.  These are not like the thick fibers that you see in lash-extension type mascaras that can flake off and get into your eyes.  I did not actually see any fibers anywhere in the formula even when I inspected it with a magnifying glass.

Helpful Tips:

If you read reviews for this product you may find the information confusing, as some people say to apply mascara on top of the Lancôme Cils Booster while it is still wet, and others say to wait until the primer is dry.  Here are my thoughts:

  • If you apply your mascara on top of Lancôme Cils Booster while it is still wet and you use the wand that comes with your tube of mascara, you have just contaminated your mascara by getting wet primer on the wand. As soon as you put the wand back into the tube of mascara containing wet primer, your mascara will not perform the same and the mascara will produce terrible clumps.
  • When you remove the Lancôme Cils Booster wand from the tube, scrape some of the primer back into the tube so the brush won’t be too full of product.
  • Apply the Lancôme Cils Booster to one eye at a time as it dries quickly.
  • A light coat will work better than a thick coat.
  • After applying the primer brush through the lashes with a dry wand to remove clumps before applying mascara.
  • By the time you have finished with the second eye, the first eye is dry.
  • If you find that your mascara is clumping worse on top of the primer, it is because you are using too much primer.
  • If you are having trouble completely covering the white primer and some of it is still showing, first apply a light coat of mascara, then the Lancôme Cils Booster and finally another coat of mascara. By “sandwiching” the primer with mascara you will eliminate the potential for any graying or white showing through.

Evening Review:  Lancôme Cils Booster makes lashes look considerably thicker and makes mascara perform better.  After many hours there is no flaking or smudging of the mascara.  You can use Lancôme Cils Booster under any brand of mascara even though Lancôme would prefer that you use this over a Lancôme mascara.

Overall Review:  Lancôme Cils Booster Base de Mascara Super-Enhancing Mascara Base performs very well and provides excellent results for making the most of thin or sparse eyelashes.

Pros:

  • Makes thin lashes look considerably thicker.
  • Makes mascara go further as you use less mascara.
  • Primer gives mascara something to bind to.

Cons:

  • The tip of the wand is too bulky for my taste; I would prefer a narrower, more tapered tip for greater control and ease of use on the lower lashes. (I like the wand that comes with Clinique Lash Building Primer.)
  • Price

Suitability:  Lancôme Cils Booster is suitable for the following users:

  • All users

RATINGS REPORT:

Morning Rating = 4 stars4 Stars;

Evening Rating = 4 stars4 Stars;

Average from Other Testers = 4 stars4 Stars;

Value Rating = 2 stars2 Stars;

Overall Rating = 3+ stars3.5 Stars = Very Good.

(Please review the About 365 Cosmetic Reviews page for the rating info.)

Lancôme Cils BoosterLancôme Cils Booster PackageLancôme Cils Booster Wand and SwatchLashes Without Mascara or Lancôme Cils BoosterLashes With Lancôme Cils Booster By ItselfLashes With Mascara By ItselfLashes With Mascara over Lancôme Cils Booster

Lancôme Cils Booster Before After

Ingredients:  AQUA / WATER / EAU, ORYZA SATIVA CERA / RICE BRAN WAX, COPERNICIA CERIFERA CERA / CARNAUBA WAX / CIRE DE CARNAUBA, CERA ALBA / BEESWAX / CIRE DABEILLE, STEARIC ACID, CANDELILLA CERA / CANDELILLA WAX / CIRE DE CANDELILLA, TRIETHANOLAMINE, PALMITIC ACID, ACACIA SENEGAL / ACACIA SENEGAL GUM, PANTHENOL, PEG/PPG-17/18 DIMETHICONE, SODIUM POLYMETHACRYLATE, MYRISTIC ACID, RAYON, HYDROXYETHYLCELLULOSE, POLYCAPROLACTONE, POLYQUATERNIUM-10, TOCOPHERYL ACETATE, METHYLPARABEN, PROPYLPARABEN.

Important:  Please read our full Disclaimer before using this or any product.

Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion

Product:  Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion.  Will this moisturizer leave your skin soft or slick?  Is the dupe, Equate Beauty Strikingly Unique, a steal or a waste?

Overall Rating (Clinique)2+ stars2.25 Stars – Just Okay
Overall Rating (Equate Beauty) = 2+ stars2.75 Stars – Just Okay to Good

Cost (Clinique): $26.00 for 4.2 oz. ($6.19 per fluid ounce)  Price Category:  Mid-range
Cost (Equate Beauty): $6.84 for 4.2 oz. ($1.63 per fluid ounce)  Price Category:  Dirt Cheap

Sold By (Clinique):  Clinique; Dillard’s; Sephora; Major Department Stores
Sold By (Equate Beauty):  Wal-mart

Containers:  Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion – Plastic bottle with pump or twist-off cap (your choice), outer carton.  Equate Beauty Strikingly Unique Moisturizing Lotion – Plastic bottle with pump, outer carton.

Description:  Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion is intended for skin types (1) and (2) for those of you that are Clinique customers.  For those who have no idea what that means, Skin Type 1 is Very Dry to Dry; and Skin Type 2 is Dry Combination.   Clinique makes a gel formula of this product for skin types (3) (Oily Combination) and (4) (Oily).  As with all products from the Clinique line, this moisturizer is fragrance free.  However, it is not free of some pore-clogging and disturbing ingredients such as mineral oil, petrolatum and artificial color.  The same can be said for the Equate Beauty Strikingly Unique Moisturizing Lotion.

Clinique states, “Dermatologist-developed formula combines all-day hydration with skin-strengthening ingredients to help skin look younger, longer. Helps strengthen skin’s own moisture barrier by 54%, so more moisture stays in.”

Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion is a moisturizer intended to be used night and day, after cleansing, toning, and the application of any other lighter products such as serums.  Always apply your products following cleansing in the order from the most watery consistency to the thickest consistency.

Wal-mart also makes a version of the Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion called Equate Beauty Strikingly Unique Moisturizing Lotion.  Today, not only are we going to review the Clinique product, but we are also going to compare it to the Equate Beauty version.  These two products are, once again, very similar.  Wal-mart Equate Beauty only has the lotion version of this product.  They do not have the gel version or any other duplicates or copies.

I must admit, in my youth I rarely used any type of moisturizer.  As I have aged, it is something I seem to need more and more.  I have never been able to find a good one that does not irritate my hypersensitive skin or make my nose run like a proverbial faucet.  I first tried this one decades ago before I knew a great deal about cosmetic ingredients.  Back in those days, ingredients were not even disclosed to consumers.  I began using Clinique strictly because it was fragrance free and markets itself as having stringent research and gentle ingredients.  I decided to re-visit this line when I began this blog because I assumed the Clinique products would have changed and improved over the years with all of the advancements and research into the anti-aging benefits of cutting-edge botanicals and other skin-care ingredients.  I am disappointed to say that this Clinque formula is an old and tired one that should be retired.

Morning Review:  Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion is an okay looking and smelling lotion except for the yellow dye.  It has an ever-so-faint-citrus scent that is pleasant.  The lotion feels silky to my fingertips and when I first applied it, my skin felt velvety.  I’m used to my moisturizers being completed absorbed into my skin within a few minutes.  I waited for this lotion to be absorbed, but it never did.  And when I say never, I do mean never.  It just sat on top of my skin and every time I touched my skin it just felt sticky and greasy.  Makeup does not apply well on top of this product at all.  I used this on a separate day from the Equate Beauty dupe.

My morning review for the Equate Beauty Strikingly Unique Moisturizing Lotion is also disappointing.  The Equate Beauty moisturizer smells, looks, feels, and performs the same.  This stuff just sits on top of my skin and feels heavy.

Please Note:  Neither Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion nor Equate Beauty Strikingly Unique Moisturizing Lotion contain any SPF or sunscreen ingredients.  If you use this as a daytime moisturizer, you will also need a separate sunscreen.  Since I only like to use one moisturizer with an SPF in the daytime, this is not the best for me.  I would advise you only use this at night if you don’t want to wear two products.

Please Note:  If you have Rosacea or any form of acne, please check with your dermatologist before using this.   Mineral oil and petrolatum may clog your pores and make your condition worse.

Morning Rating (Clinique) = 2 stars2 Stars;
Morning Rating (Equate Beauty) =2 stars 2 Stars;

Evening Review:  After several hours my skin felt the same as when I initially applied the Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion, greasy.  I have to say that I was happy to wash it off and have my face feel clean again.

My evening review for the Equate Beauty Strikingly Unique Moisturizing Lotion is, once again, so similar that it is difficult to distinguish between the two products, neither of which impressed me in the least.  In my opinion the Equate Beauty moisturizer is indeed comparable to the Clinique moisturizer for a lot less money.  If you are a die-hard Clinique customer and you like this product, the Equate Beauty copy may delight you.

Overall Review:  Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion is not much better than any other lotion with mineral oil and petrolatum.   It does have some nice soothing cucumber and skin-plumping sodium hyaluronate, but those don’t make up for the other outdated ingredients.  If you have really dry skin this will make it feel softer and it will impart hydration as long as you don’t mind the heavy feel of the oil and petrolatum on your skin.  Personally, I don’t want those ingredients on my face.  This is definitely not an appropriate product for anyone with oily skin.  My male tester with dry skin also said this moisturizer made his face feel greasy and he did not care for it.  It is fine as a hand or body lotion, but way too expensive for that purpose.

Comparing the two products, Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion and Equate Beauty Strikingly Unique Moisturizing Lotion, are much more strikingly similar than dramatically different. (pun intended)  If you read the ingredients lists below you will see just how similar.  This is one of the most similar dupes I have seen in terms of ingredients, as well as performance.

I have not tried the gel version of this product from Clinique so I cannot comment on the difference.

Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion and Equate Beauty Strikingly Unique Moisturizing Lotion are suitable for the following skin types:  (Not for oily or combination)

  • All ethnicities;
  • All ages;
  • All sexes;
  • Dry;
  • Sensitive;
  • Consistent.

Please see the Help page to determine your skin type.

RATINGS REPORT:

Morning Rating (Clinique) = 2 stars2 Stars;
Morning Rating (Equate Beauty) =2 stars 2 Stars;

Evening Rating (Clinique) = 2 stars2 Stars;
Evening Rating (Equate Beauty) =2 stars 2 Stars;

Average from Other Testers = 2 stars2 Stars;

Value Rating (Clinique) = 3 stars3 Stars;
Value Rating (Equate Beauty) = 5 stars5 Stars;

Overall Rating (Clinique) = 2+ stars2.25 Stars – Just Okay.
Overall Rating (Equate Beauty)  = 2+ stars2.75 Stars – Just Okay to Good.
(Please review the About 365 Cosmetic Reviews page for the rating info.)

Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion

Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion

Equate Beauty Strikingly Unique Moisturizing Lotion

Equate Beauty Strikingly Unique Moisturizing Lotion

Ingredients (Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion): Water, Mineral Oil, Glycerin, Petrolatum, Stearic Acid, Glyceryl Stearate, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Oil, Urea, Lanolin Alcohol, Triethanolamine, Hordeum Vulgare (Barley) Extract, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seedcake, Propylene Glycol Dicaprate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Butylene Glycol, Pentylene Glycol, Trisodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Yellow 6, Yellow 5, Red 33.

Ingredients (Equate Beauty Strikingly Unique Moisturizing Lotion): Water, Mineral Oil, Glycerin, Petrolatum, Stearic Acid, Glyceryl Stearate, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil, Lanolin Alcohol, Saccaride Isomerate, Hordeum Vulgare (Barley) Extract, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seedcake, Propylene Glycol Dicaprate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Butylene Glycol, Carbomer, Tetrasodium EDTA, Sodium Hydroxide, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Yellow 6 (CI 15985), Yellow 5 (CI 19140), Red 33 (CI 17200).

Important:  Please read our full Disclaimer before using this or any product.

Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild

Product:  Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild.  Will this cleanser leave your skin soft or stripped?  What about the dupe – does it work?

Overall Rating2+ stars2.75 Stars – Just Okay to Good

Cost: $17.00 for 6.7 oz. ($2.54 per fluid ounce)  Price Category:  Mid-range

Sold By:  Clinique; Dillard’s; Sephora; Major Department Stores.  Equate version sold by Wal-mart.

Container:  Clinique Liquid Soap Mild  – Plastic bottle with plastic pump; pump does twist off. Equate MILD Facial Soap – Plastic bottle with plastic pump; pump does twist off.

Description:  Clinique Liquid Facial Soap comes in three formulas: (1) Extra Mild; (2) Mild; and (3) Oily Skin Formula.  As with all products from the Clinique line, this cleanser is fragrance free.

The company states, “The first step in Clinique’s 3-Step Skin Care System. All the benefits of Clinique’s dermatologist-developed Facial Soap in a liquid formula. Cleanses without stripping protective lipids. Preps skin for the exfoliating action of Clarifying Lotion. Convenient pump dispenses just the right amount.”

Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild is a cleanser designed to be used with water.  This is a lathering cleanser. It is intended to be used night and day, prior to the application of any other product.

Wal-mart also makes a version of the Clinique product called Equate MILD Facial Soap.  Today, not only are we going to review the Clinique product, but we are also going to compare it to the Equate version.  The results may surprise you.

Morning Review:  Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild is clear and it has a very faint scent that is almost nonexistent.  I don’t know how to describe the scent other than a light chemical scent similar to wet paint.  The barely detectable scent does not bother me or make my nose run.  The liquid is about the same thickness as dish detergent.  One pump is more than enough to wash my face and I would say a full pump is way too much.  I wet my face and applied the soap and it immediately began to lather.  It felt nice and gentle on my skin.  It left my face feeling very clean.  It did not make my skin feel itchy or irritated at all.  I only used this on one side of my face for comparison.

My morning review for the Equate MILD Facial Soap on the other side of my face is surprising.  It smells, looks, and feels the same as the Clinique cleanser.  It cleans very well without irritation.

Unfortunately for both products, my skin felt dry after using these cleansers which was disappointing.

Morning Rating = 3 stars4 Stars for how well they clean, 2 Stars for drying my skin = 3 Stars

Evening Review:  After several hours my skin felt very dry and in need of some serious moisture.  Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild removes all traces of face makeup and my makeup wipes are clean after using this soap.  You will need to use a separate eye makeup remover with this cleanser.  This would be a good cleanser to use with a sonic cleansing brush.

My evening review for the Equate MILD Facial Soap on the other side of my face is once again exactly the same.  I would have to say that the Equate cleanser performs as well as the Clinique cleanser.

Please Note:  If you have Rosacea, please check with your dermatologist before using the Clinique or Equate cleansers.  It should be fine if your skin is consistent to oily, but you can make your situation worse by experimenting with new products on your own.

Overall Review:  Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild is an excellent cleanser in terms of cleansing ability but I cannot give it a high recommendation because any product that is drying to the skin is not beneficial no matter what your skin type is.

A review of the ingredients shows that Sodium Chloride is the third ingredient in both the Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild and the Equate MILD Facial Soap.  Sodium Chloride is, quite simply, table salt and salt is not a good thing to put on your face.  If you have dry skin this is going to dry it out even further.  If you have oily skin this soap is going to clean well and your skin will feel good at first, but then your body will produce extra oil to compensate for the fact that you have removed your own natural oils.  I give the Clinique company the highest of marks and ratings for their lack of fragrance and typically their products are very gentle, but for me this product just falls a little short.

This cleanser is suitable for women and men provided it does not have a drying effect on your skin.  Everyone reacts differently to products and perhaps this one will work well for you.  It may perform well for you if you have oily skin.  It is not a product I would buy again unless I had no other fragrance-free options.  If you have severe fragrance allergies, you should not have any negative reaction to this product whatsoever.  My male tester who also has dry skin said this cleanser left his skin feeling very dried out and he needed to put lotion on afterwards.

Regarding comparing the two products, Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild and Equate MILD Facial Soap, they are so similar that it is difficult to differentiate between them.  If you read the ingredients lists below you will see just how similar.  Equate simply changed the order of some of the ingredients and added a different form of Vitamin E so that they could not be charged with completely copying a proprietary formula.  If you have normal to oily skin and like the Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild you can save money with the Equate MILD Facial Soap and they are so similar I doubt you will notice any difference.

I have not tried the other two versions of this cleanser from Clinique so I cannot comment on the differences.  A review of the ingredients from the Mild to the Extra Mild formulas shows that they are completely different.  The Extra Mild formula is an oil-based, non-lathering lotion type of cleanser so that product would not be comparable to the Mild formula at all.  I would not recommend the Oily skin version of this liquid soap.  The Oily version contains menthol which some people are sensitive to and other drying ingredients that should be avoided.

Equate only makes the Mild version of the Clinique Liquid Facial Soap.  They do not have a copy for the Extra Mild or the Oily Skin formulas.

Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild is suitable for the following skin types:  (Not for dry to very dry skin)

  • All ethnicities;
  • All ages;
  • All sexes;
  • Sensitive;
  • Consistent;
  • Oily;
  • Combination (Only if Combination is Consistent plus Oily).

Please see the Help page to accurately determine your skin type.

RATINGS REPORT:

Morning Rating = 3 stars3 Stars;

Evening Rating = 2 stars2 Stars;

Average from Other Testers = 3 stars3 Stars;

Value Rating = 3 stars3 Stars;

Overall Rating = 2+ stars2.75 Stars – Just Okay to Good.  (Please review the About 365 Cosmetic Reviews page for the rating info.)

Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild

Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild

Equate MILD Facial Soap

Equate MILD Facial Soap

Ingredients (Clinique Liquid Soap Mild): Water, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Sodium Chloride, Cocamidopropyl Hydroxysultaine, Lauramidopropyl Betaine, Sodium Cocoyl Sarcosinate, Tea-Cocoyl Glutamate, Di-PPG-2 Myreth-10 Adipate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, PEG-120 Methyl Glucose Dioleate, Sucrose, Sodium Hyaluronate, Cetyl Triethylmonium Dimethicone PEG-8 Succinate, Tocopheryl Ethyl Succinate Ethyldimonium Ethosulfate, Butylene Glycol, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria), Hexylene Glycol, Polyquaternium-7, Laureth-2, Caprylyl Glycol, Sodium Sulfate, Edta, Disodium EDTA, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol.

Ingredients (Equate MILD Facial Soap): Water, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Sodium Chloride, Cocamidopropyl Hydroxysultaine, Lauramidopropyl Betaine, Sodium Cocoyl Sarcosinate, Sodium-Cocoyl Glutamate, Di-PPG-2 Myreth-10 Adipate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, PEG-120 Methyl Glucose Dioleate, Sucrose, Sodium Hyaluronate, Cetyl Triethylmonium Dimethicone PEG-8 Succinate, Butylene Glycol, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria), Hexylene Glycol, Polyquaternium-7, Laureth-2, Caprylyl Glycol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Sodium Sulfate, Edta, Disodium EDTA, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol.

Important:  Please read our full Disclaimer before using this or any product.

First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream

Product:  First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream.  Does your skin need serious help?

Overall Rating3+ stars3.25 Stars – Good

Cost: $30.00 for 6 oz. ($5.00 per ounce)  Price Category:  Mid-range

Sold By:  FirstAidBeauty; QVC; Sephora; Ulta

Container:  Larger Sizes – Plastic jar with twist-off lid; Smaller Sizes – Plastic tube with twist-off flip-top cap

Description:  First Aid Beauty is a line many of you may not be familiar with.  This is a relatively new brand of cosmetics and has only been around since 2009.  This brand first caught my attention because the entire line is fragrance free and all of the products say they are safe for sensitive skin.  The brand really took off when they got their products into Sephora stores, on QVC, and starting getting buzz from beauty editors.  First Aid Beauty (FAB) has received quite a lot of media attention in recent years, most of it positive as far as I can tell.

FAB Ultra Repair Cream is a fragrance-free cream that is best for consistent, dry, combination or sensitive skin.  This cream may be too intense for oily skin.  This cream is intended to be used both on the face any anywhere on the body.  Since this is a thick and heavy cream, this should be used after other products, if applying it to the face.

My skin has been taking a beating the past few weeks with all of the testing I have been doing so I was happy to try out a cream with “ultra repair” in the name.

Please Note:  This product contains Eucalyptus Globulus (next to last ingredient).  Many individuals are sensitive to eucalyptus and this may cause irritation if you don’t tolerate eucalyptus well.  If you experience burning or itching, please discontinue use.

The company claims:  “DELIVERS EXCEPTIONAL HYDRATION AND PROTECTION WITH NO GREASY PETROLEUM – FAB Ultra Repair® Cream is a thick, rich, emollient product that hydrates deep down with exceptional penetration. With the help of colloidal oatmeal, shea butter, soothing eucalyptus oil and ceramides, FAB Ultra Repair® Cream provides immediate relief and visible improvement for distressed skin. FAB Antioxidant Booster is there to defend skin from free radical damage. Ultra Repair® Cream can be used all over the body and on the face. “

Regarding the skin types this cream is intended for the company further states, “WHO SHOULD USE IT?  FAB Ultra Repair® Cream is for anyone with severely dry, scaly skin due to harsh winter weather, aggressive cosmetic treatments or any of the following conditions: psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, irritant eczema, allergic eczema, seborrheic dermatitis, keratosis pilaris.”

Please Note:  This product is not intended to treat any medical condition.  Before using this or any product, please consult your dermatologist.

Reviewing the ingredients, this cream is not going to provide any real anti-aging benefits or cutting-edge ingredients.  It is a nice basic cream that will provide hydration and moisture from colloidal oatmeal, glycerin and shea butter.

Morning Review:  The FAB Ultra Repair Cream is a bright white thick cream.  This does not contain any SPF or sunscreen ingredients.  Apply this after your serum or primer and sunscreen. It has a velvety texture and a dollop about the size of a raspberry (1/4 teaspoon) is enough for just the face.  You will probably use a full tablespoon or more if you are going to apply this to your entire body.  The scent is difficult to describe.  It smells like a eucalyptus candle to me.  It is very subtle and does not linger once applied to the skin.  I did not experience any negative side effects from the scent.  The cream feels very hydrating and soothing to my irritated, sensitive skin.  Because this cream is so dense, I do not think users with oily skin will like this one, despite the claims from the company that this cream is suitable for all skin types.  It takes a while for this to fully absorb into the skin, so if you are planning on putting makeup on top of it, you may need to allow for an extra five minutes.

Morning Rating4 stars4 Stars

Evening Review:  At the end of the day my skin does not feel dry, tight or oily.  I did not experience any irritation, redness or sensitivity issues.  The FAB cream really helped to calm my skin down and kept it feeling soft and smooth for several hours.

Overall Review:  First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream seems to be an excellent heavy cream for all skin types except oily, especially those with fragrance allergies.  This is suitable for both women and men.  My male tester did not find the scent displeasing and could barely smell anything.  This would be an excellent hand cream for men who have rough skin.  I would say I like this better as a hand or body cream than a face cream.  It simply feels too heavy and smothering to me.  I don’t like to feel like there is anything on my skin.  Also, I don’t like to use separate creams and sunscreens, so I would only use this at night or if I were staying in for the day.

The cream is available in tubes in smaller sizes and jars in larger sizes.  Even though the cost per ounce is less in the jar, I would buy the smaller tubes to protect the contents from contamination.  Even though the concentration of anti-oxidants in this creams is quite small, what little there is will be sensitive to air and light and rendered ineffective over time if you buy the jar.

First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream is suitable for the following skin types:  (All but oily)

  • All ethnicities;
  • All ages;
  • All sexes;
  • Dry;
  • Sensitive (not if sensitive to eucalyptus);
  • Consistent;
  • Combination.

RATINGS REPORT:

Morning Rating = 4 stars4 Stars;

Evening Rating = 3 stars3 Stars;

Average from Other Testers = 3 stars3 Stars;

Value Rating = 3 stars3 Stars;

Overall Rating = 3+ stars3.25 Stars – Good.  (Please review the About 365 Cosmetic Reviews page for the rating info.)

First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair CreamFirst Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream Open JarFirst Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream in Hand

Ingredients:  Colloidal Oatmeal, Water, Stearic Acid, Glycerin, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Glyceryl Stearate, Glyceryl Stearate SE, Cetearyl Alcohol, Caprylyl Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Squalane, Allantoin, Sodium Hydroxide, Dimethicone, Xanthan Gum, Disodium EDTA, Chrysanthemum Parthenium (Feverfew) Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Butylene Glycol, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Eucalyptus Globulus Leaf Extract, Ceramide 3.

Formulated Without:  Artificial fragrance, Colorants, Parabens.

Please Note:  There has been some controversy regarding whether Feverfew Extract is good or bad for your skin.  The Chrysanthemum Parthenium (Feverfew) Extract that First Aid Beauty uses is free of the potentially sensitizing component Parthenolide (technically known as Sesquiterpene Lactone).  Feverfew itself, when Parthenolide-free, has a calming effect on the skin.

Important:  Please read our full Disclaimer before using this or any product.

Clinique Repairwear Laser Focus Smooths, Restores, Corrects

Product:  Clinique Repairwear Laser Focus Smooths, Restores, Corrects.  Does this serum really produce dramatic results?

Overall Rating3+ stars 3.5 Stars – Very Good

Cost: $49.50 for 1 oz. ($49.50 per fluid ounce)  Price Category:  Expensive

Sold By:  Clinique; Dillard’s; Macys; Sephora; Major Department Stores

Container:  Glass bottle with glass or plastic dropper

Description:  Clinique Repairwear Laser Focus serum is a fragrance-free serum intended to address fine lines and wrinkles.  This serum is designed to be used immediately following cleansing, night and day, prior to the application of any other product.

I have been familiar with this brand for decades.  Once upon a time, they were the only company with an entire fragrance-free line that was readily available at retail.

The company claims:Delivers 63% of the visible wrinkle improvement of a dermatological laser procedure at 12 weeks. Not a laser, of course. But impressive results. New ingredients deliver twice the smoothing as before, remarkably refining skin’s texture.”  These are some pretty lofty claims, right?  I don’t necessarily agree with these statements, but I always take marketing claims with a grain of salt.

Please note, nothing that comes out of a bottle or jar is going to give you results that can in any way compare to the dramatic changes your skin will see if you undergo laser treatments from a physician.  Lasers can penetrate the epidermis down into deeper layers and will stimulate collagen production greater than any serum.  Lasers can tighten and tone skin.  Lasers can eliminate skin issues that no topical product can achieve.

 As we age, our skin gets thinner, collagen production slows, and skin regeneration and sloughing decreases.  Thinner skin also becomes less flexible which leads to the formation of lines and wrinkles.  Light skinned individuals typically first show aging as lines around their eyes and dark skinned individuals typically experience discoloration as they age followed by lines and wrinkles.  Because serums are so light and thin, they are readily absorbed into the skin to deliver anti-aging antioxidants and other beneficial ingredients.

Morning Review:  This Clinique fragrance-free serum is clear and has almost no scent other than those from the botanical ingredients.  The consistency is light and the texture is silky.  Due to the high concentration of silicone derivatives, it glides on smoothly onto my skin.  This serum feels very gentle and I don’t experience any irritation.  Due to the lightness, it is quickly absorbed.  Although not specifically designed for it, this serum can be applied to your décolletage.  My makeup goes on top of this product beautifully without any stickiness or tackiness.  As this product does not contain any sunscreen, please apply sunscreen before your makeup or use a makeup with a high SPF.

Morning Rating4 stars4 Stars

Evening Review:  At the end of the day my skin does not feel tight.  This serum helps my makeup to wear well, my face stays soft and smooth, and I do not experience any sensitivity or irritation issues.  This serum helps to improve the tone and texture of my skin.  I have not seen any evidence of elimination or improvement of fine lines or wrinkles.

Overall Review:  Clinique Repairwear Laser Focus serum is an excellent serum for all skin types, especially those with fragrance allergies and/or other sensitivities. This is suitable for both women and men.

Please note:  This serum contains ingredients that are air and light sensitive.  Do not store this near a sunny window sill and keep the container tightly sealed when not in use.  This product comes in larger sizes, but the ingredients begin to lose effectiveness once exposed to air and light.  Unless you are going to use the contents within 90 days, it doesn’t make a great deal of sense to buy the large bottle just because it costs less.  If you still have a lot of product left after 90 days you’ll essentially just have a nice light weight primer without any anti-aging benefits.  If you like to use a lot of serum twice a day and also apply it to your décolletage, then the larger bottle may be a good choice for you.

This serum is suitable for the following skin types:

  • All ethnicities;
  • All ages;
  • All sexes;
  • Dry;
  • Sensitive;
  • Consistent;
  • Oily;
  • Combination.

RATINGS REPORT:

Morning Rating = 4 stars4 Stars;

Evening Rating = 4 stars4 Stars;

Average from Other Testers = 4 stars4 Stars;

Value Rating = 2 stars2 Stars;

Overall Rating = 3+ stars3.5 Stars – Very Good.  (Please review the About 365 Cosmetic Reviews page for the rating info.)

Clinique Repairwear Laser Focus Smooths, Restores, Corrects Serum

Ingredients: Water, Dimethicone, Butylene Glycol, Polysorbate 20, Methyl Trimethicone, Vinyl Dimethicone/Methicone Silsesquioxane Crosspolymer, Polysorbate 20, Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ether Dimethyl Silane, Glycerin, Silica, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Lauryl PEG-9 Polydimethylsiloxyethyl Dimethicone, Methyl Gluceth-20, Polysilicone-11, Sigesbeckia Orientalis (St. Paul’s Wort) Extract, Salvia Sclarea (Clary) Extract, Acetyl Glucosamine, Plankton Extract, Whey Protein, Sea Whip Extract, Arabidopsis Thaliana Extract, Caffeine, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Protein, Anthemis Nobilis (Chamomile), Sodium Hyaluronate, Micrococcus Lysate, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Ergothioneine, Aminopropyl Ascorbyl Phosphate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Caprylyl Glycol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Cholesterol, Glyceryl Polymethacrylate, Sodium Hydroxide, Lecithin, Carbomer, PEG-8, Xanthan Gum, Citric Acid, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol.

Formulated Without:  Artificial fragrance, Dyes, Parabens.

Important:  Please read our full Disclaimer before using this or any product.

Lancôme High Résolution Refill-3x Triple Action Renewal Anti-Wrinkle Cream

Product:  Lancôme High Résolution Refill-3x Triple Action Renewal Anti-Wrinkle Cream.  Today’s product is another Lancôme product that fell short of my expectations.

Overall Rating: 1+ stars  1.13 Stars = Terrible

Cost: $89.00 for 1.7 oz. ($52.35 per ounce)  Price Category:  Expensive

Sold By:  Lancôme; Sephora; Dillard’s; Major Department Stores

Container:  Plastic jar with screw off lid;  (This is my least favorite type of container.  Each time you unscrew the lid and remove it you are exposing the contents to air, bacteria, lessening the effectiveness of the ingredients, and unless you sterilize your fingers each time before you touch the contents, even more bacteria.  If you are going to use products from jars, please remove the contents with a tiny spatula, not your fingers.  If you can’t find the spatulas in stores, message me and I’ll tell you where to buy them for cheap.)

Description:   For those of you that love Lancôme, I hope you don’t feel like I am bashing this company.  I am a huge fan of L’Oreal and when we get into makeup reviews, you will see just how big of a fan I am.  Since L’Oreal is the parent company of Lancôme, you would think I would like this line, too.  The problem is that Lancôme began as a perfume company, so it is no wonder that all of their products are so filled with fragrance, the main ingredient I am allergic to.

Lancôme High Résolution Refill-3x Triple Action Renewal Anti-Wrinkle Cream is another heavily perfumed Lancôme product with some pretty impressive claims.  The website states, “This staple formula, featuring the Refill-3X complex, helps reduce the number, depth and size of wrinkles for visibly renewed smoothness.”  The first benefit listed is “Visible anti-wrinkle results*” and then the asterisk states, “*results may vary, wrinkles may not appear eliminated”.  It is interesting that the text in the asterisk is a different font.  Maybe it was listed as an afterthought or perhaps to comply with the FDA’s warning letter to Lancôme about false claims.

Please Note:  This formula was changed a couple of years ago and the sunscreen was removed.  If you purchase this product from Sephora, the product shown on their website does not exist any longer.  Sephora has not updated their website and they are still showing this product with an SPF of 15.  The current formula does not contain any SPF ingredients. Dillard’s has updated their product photo, but not their description.  Dillard’s is still showing SPF also.  I have posted photos of containers showing both the old and new formulas.

Morning Review:  When I first unscrewed the jar I was overwhelmed with the amount of strong fragrance in this product.  I immediately went to the ingredients to review where fragrance occurred in the list as ingredients are listed in order of content in the product.  I expected fragrance to be high up in the order.  It was listed as the last ingredient.  This tells me that the amount of anti-aging ingredients in this product is very small.  The cream is ivory in color and has a silky texture.  It feels good on your face if you don’t mind smelling like a bottle of musky perfume.

The cream feels smooth and made my skin feel soft.  The second ingredient, dimethicone, is a silicone derivative that makes for a nice primer so makeup goes on well on top of this.  The downside is that my eyes and nose were watering from the scent and after a few minutes I developed a serious headache from the fragrance.

Warning:  this product does not contain any sunscreen.  Sunscreen was removed from this formula a couple of years ago.  You must apply a separate sunscreen if you are going to use this as a day moisturizer.  Also, due to the heavy perfume, I would not advise getting this in or near your eyes.  You should use a separate eye cream with this product.

Morning Rating: 1 star1 Star

Evening Review:  To be honest, I tried several times to keep this on all day to see how my skin would react, but the heavy fragrance had such awful side effects for me that the longest I could stand it before washing it off was two hours.  The scent was physically making me ill.  One of my testers refused to apply it due to the scent.  One of my testers washed it off after a few minutes.  One of my testers who likes perfumes said it was even too strong for her but she liked the feel of the cream.  I have to agree that is does feel nice, but I couldn’t leave it on long enough to find out if there are any other benefits.

Overall Review:  Lancôme High Résolution Refill-3x Triple Action Renewal Anti-Wrinkle Cream has a nice silky texture and it feels lovely.  The silicone and glycerin will make your skin feel soft and give you the perception that this is doing something good for your skin.  In reality, any good moisturizing cream will do the same thing at a fraction of the cost.  This cream offers nothing in the way of cutting-edge anti-aging properties or ingredients.

Most men would not like the scent of this product.

This cream is suitable for the following skin types: (Not for those with fragrance allergies)

  • All ethnicities;
  • All ages;
  • Women who like heavy perfumes;
  • Oily;
  • Dry;
  • Sensitive (not if you are sensitive to fragrances);
  • Consistent;
  • Combination.

RATINGS REPORT:

Morning Rating = 1 star1 Star;

Evening Rating = 1 star1 Star;

Average from Other Testers = 1+ stars1.5 Stars;

Value Rating = 1 star1 Star;

Overall Rating = 1+ stars1.13 Stars – Terrible.  (Please review the About 365 Cosmetic Reviews page for the rating info.)

Lancôme High Résolution Refill-3x Triple Action Renewal Anti-Wrinkle Cream-2

Lancôme Current Formula Without SPF

Lancôme High Résolution Refill-3x Triple Action Renewal Anti-Wrinkle Cream-1

Lancôme Old Formula With SPF No Longer Available

Ingredients:  WATER, DIMETHICONE, GLYCERIN, ETHYLHEXYL METHOXYCINNAMATE, MINERAL OIL, AMMONIUM POLYACRYLDIMETHYLTAURAMIDE / AMMONIUM POLYACRYLOYLDIMETHYL TAURATE, ETHYLHEXYL PALMITATE, PHENYLBENZIMIDAZOLE SULFONIC ACID, CETYL ALCOHOL, TRIETHANOLAMINE, METHYLSILANOL/SILICATE CROSSPOLYMER, OCTYLDODECANOL, TOCOPHEROL, SODIUM HYALURONATE, MEDICAGO SATIVA EXTRACT / ALFALFA EXTRACT, HYDROLYZED RICE PROTEIN, PHENOXYETHANOL, ACETYL TRIFLUOROMETHYLPHENYL VALYLGLYCINE, ADENOSINE, PEG-8 ISOSTEARATE, ETHYLPARABEN, POLYGLYCERYL-3 METHYLGLUCOSE DISTEARATE, POLY C10-30 ALKYL ACRYLATE, NYLON-66, TALC, SILICA DIMETHYL SILYLATE, DIMETHICONOL, LIMONENE, XANTHAN GUM, MANGANESE GLUCONATE, LINALOOL, BENZYL ALCOHOL, CHOLESTEROL, CAPRYLOYL SALICYLIC ACID, ALPHA-ISOMETHYL IONONE, ACRYLATES COPOLYMER, SORBITAN PALMITATE, GERANIOL, DISODIUM STEAROYL GLUTAMATE, DISODIUM EDTA, METHYLPARABEN, BUTYLPHENYL METHYLPROPIONAL, CITRONELLOL, COUMARIN, PARFUM / FRAGRANCE.

Important:  Please read our full Disclaimer before using this or any product.

Lancôme –Advanced- Génifique Youth Activating Concentrate

Product:  Today we are reviewing Lancôme -Advanced- Génifique Youth Activating Concentrate.  Does this so-called “youth” serum really do all that it claims?

Overall Rating = 1+ stars1.75 Stars – Terrible to Just Okay

Cost: $20.00 for .27 oz. ($74.01 per fluid ounce) Price Category:  Expensive

Sold By:  Lancôme; SephoraDillard’s

Container:  Plastic bottle with screw-off plastic dropper

Description:   This is a controversial product.  It has a lot of loyal followers.  So why is it controversial?  In 2012 Lancôme was all over the news for being cited by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) for making false claims with many of its beauty products that were so outrageous that they fell under the guise of drugs pursuant to the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.  As a result, Lancôme was forced to completely change its marketing strategies, website information, and magazine ads.  Don’t believe me?  Here is the FDA’s letter to Lancôme dated September 7, 2012.  The company was also cited for false advertising by using overly-airbrushed spokesmodels that presented unrealistic images.

Lancôme -Advanced- Génifique Youth Activating Concentrate is a very light weight serum.  This is an oil-free product.  It has a slight viscosity to it due to the third ingredient, glycerin.  It is thicker than water but not as thick as a lotion.  (Imagine a few drops of lotion in water.)  It is mostly clear but with a slight opacity to it.  This is not a fragrance-free product.  One tester described the scent as perfumed antiseptic.  To me it smells like hair spray.

The company claims this serum acts on 10 key signs of youth including: 1. skin texture; 2. resiliency; 3. elasticity; 4. firmness; 5. sagginess; 6. fine lines; 7. wrinkles; 8. radiance; 9. clarity; and 10. skin tone.

Morning Review:  Before posting this review I used a full bottle of this product on one side of my face only.  (Yes, I’m willing to sacrifice my own skin to save yours.)  The first time I put this on my face I immediately sneezed.  Then, my nose started running; after that my face began itching.  (I’m obviously allergic to the fragrance and citronellol in this serum.)  The fourth ingredient is denatured alcohol which is very drying to the skin.  The remaining ingredients are included in much lesser concentrations than the alcohol.  Due to the alcohol this serum is very quickly absorbed into your skin.  It does not leave any oily feel but it does feel silky and soft.  My makeup goes on nicely on top of the product, but not much different than the side without the serum.

Morning Rating = 2 stars2 Stars

Evening Review:  At the end of the day my skin felt irritated after itching all day and blowing my nose due to the fragrance allergy.   Sadly, after using an entire bottle, I don’t look any younger or different.  To me, the side I used the serum on looks just the same as the side I did not.  To one friend, the side I applied the serum to appeared worse.  His perception was that my face with the serum looked bumpy and irritated.  I was happy when the bottle was empty so that I would not have to smell it any longer.  I had to take a lot of allergy pills and buy lots of tissues for my runny nose during this experiment.  I did not experience any actual break outs.

Overall Review:  I do not know why anyone would rave about, much less even like this serum.  Yes, it makes your skin feel softer and silkier, but so do many other substances at one tenth the cost.  Plain glycerin costs $.65 per ounce.  The positive antioxidant ingredients, Sodium Hyaluronate (Hyaluronic Acid), and Ascorbyl Glucoside (Vitamin C) can be found in other serums in higher concentrations without irritating alcohol or fragrance for considerably less money.

Lancôme –Advanced- Génifique Youth Activating Concentrate is suitable for the following skin types:

  • All ethnicities;
  • All ages;
  • All sexes;
  • Dry (the alcohol may be too drying for you);
  • Sensitive (not if you have fragrance allergies);
  • Oily;
  • Consistent;
  • Combination.

RATINGS REPORT:

Morning Rating = 2 stars2 Stars;

Evening Rating = 2 stars2 Stars;

Average from Other Testers = 2 stars2 Stars;

Value Rating = 1 star1 Stars;

Overall Rating = 1+ stars1.75 Stars – Terrible to Just Okay.  (Please review the About 365 Cosmetic Reviews page for the rating info.)

Lancome Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Concentrate

Ingredients:  Water, Bifida Ferment Lysate, Glycerin, Alcohol Denat., Dimethicone, Hydroxyethylpiperazine Ethane Sulfonic Acid, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Sodium Hyaluronate, Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol, Adenosine, Faex Extract/Yeast Extract/Extrait De Levure, Peg-20 Methyl Glucose Sesquistearate, Peg-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Salicyloyl Phytosphingosine, Ammonium Polyacryldimethyltauramide/Ammonium Polyacryloyldimethyl Taurate, Limonene, Xanthan Gum, Caprylyl Glycol, Disodium Edta, Octyldodecanol, Citronellol, Fragrance.

Important:  Please read our full Disclaimer before using this or any product.