Age Perfect Hydra-Nutrition All-Over Honey Balm
L’Oreal’s Age Perfect Hydra-Nutrition All-Over Honey Balm is a soothing way to tackle dry skin, and although it’s pretty good, it’s not without faults.
First and foremost, this comes in an opaque plastic squeeze tube, so its beneficial ingredients are protected from light and air that can cause them to lose their effectiveness. The rich, cream-gel texture is moisturizing yet not overly thick and absorbs quickly without leaving a sticky residue.
There are plenty of hydrating and moisturizing ingredients included, among them shea butter, apricot, sunflower, passionfruit, and rice bran oils, and the honey ingredients that play heavily into this product’s advertising (honey, beeswax, and royal jelly). All will help dry skin appear plumped and smooth, and have antioxidant benefit, too. You might say honey is the bee’s knees!
This also has a relatively strong honey scent, but it doesn’t come from those ingredients. Instead, it’s because of the inclusion of fragrance + fragrance ingredients, among them geraniol and citronellol. The scent isn’t overpowering, but it does linger a bit, and fragrance of any kind puts skin at risk of irritation (see More Info for details).
Overall, this is a good moisturizing option, but if it was fragrance-free, it would’ve earned a spot on our best moisturizers list.
Note: while L’Oreal claims that the type of honey in this product, manuka honey, is extra “nourishing,” it is no more or less special for skin than any other type of honey.
- Gel-cream texture is moisturizing without being overly thick.
- Absorbs quickly without a sticky residue.
- Includes numerous hydrating and moisturizing ingredients.
- Many ingredients have antioxidant benefits as well.
- Contains fragrance and fragrance ingredients that pose a risk of skin irritation.
Why Fragrance Is a Problem for Skin: Daily use of products that contain a high amount of fragrance, whether the fragrant ingredients are synthetic or natural, causes a chronic sensitizing reaction on skin.
This reaction in turn leads to all kinds of problems, including disrupting skin’s barrier, worsening dryness, increasing or triggering redness, depleting vital substances in skin’s surface, and generally preventing skin from looking healthy, smooth, and hydrated. Fragrance free is always the best way to go for all skin types.
A surprising fact: Even though you can’t always see or feel the negative effects of fragrant ingredients on skin, the damage will still be taking place, even if it’s not evident on the surface. Research has demonstrated that you don’t need to see or feel the effects of irritation for your skin to be suffering. Much like the effects from cumulative sun damage, the negative impact and the visible damage from fragrance may not become apparent for a long time.
References for this information:
Biochimica and Biophysica Acta, May 2012, pages 1410–1419
Aging, March 2012, pages 166–175
Chemical Immunology and Allergy, March 2012, pages 77–80
Experimental Dermatology, October 2009, pages 821–832
Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, 2008, pages 191–202
International Journal of Toxicology, Volume 27, 2008, Supplement, pages 1–43
Food and Chemical Toxicology, February 2008, pages 446–475
American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 2003, pages 789–798
Silky All Over Honey Balm with Manuka Honey Extract and nurturing oils infused with calcium and antioxidants with an indulgent, honey-inspired fragrance. Absorbs quickly into skin to relieve mature, very dry skin on the face, neck, chest, and hands - even on the go. Wraps skin in soothing moisture to soften skin that feels tight and uncomfortable. Beyond nourishment, skin is left looking more youthful with a healthy glow.
L'Oreal Paris At-A-Glance
Strengths: Budget-friendly prices; good makeup removers; wide assortment of self-tanning options; one of the best, most comprehensive makeup collections at the drugstore, with superb options in almost every category; the mascaras are a tough act to follow.
Weaknesses: Jar packaging hinders some of the skincare formulas; many of their skincare formulas contain problematic amounts of fragrance and/or other irritants; exaggerated anti-aging claims.
L'Oreal's extensive makeup collection retains its stature as one of the better selections at the drugstore, though they have stiff competition from Revlon and, in some cases, sister company Maybelline New York. In recent years L'Oreal has made significant strides with foundation shades, powder textures, concealers, and, of course, superlative mascaras that rarely fail to impress. Their lipsticks are excellent and you will find many L'Oreal makeup products have a Lancome counterpart, and that the differences are minorif there are any at all.
L'Oreal's displays in many drugstores reflect better-organized products and shade categories (though testers are still scarce). Given the number of lipsticks they sell, it only makes sense to put them in color families so consumers have a better shopping experience. Their True Match products are also sensibly laid out, but the rest of the foundations aren't as organized, likely due to the smaller selection of shades. Speaking of foundations, L'Oreal has made further strides by offering more that provide sufficient UVA protection. Revlon still has the edge for consistently launching impressive foundations with sunscreen, but at least L'Oreal is (finally) catching up.
The bottom line is that every category of L'Oreals makeup has some winning (and in some cases, benchmark-setting) products.
Unfortunately, despite the brands enormous presence in the beauty industry, L'Oreal's moisturizers and treatment products are a nearly all unremarkable and repetitive. When it comes to moisturizers or serums, just about anything from Dove, Olay, Neutrogena, or Aveeno is preferred. L'Oreal does well with most of their cleansers, along with scrubs and self-tanning products, but given the widespread availability and financial resources of this line, they could be doing so much more. The good news is their makeup has made major strides and now ranks as the best overall color collection at the drugstoreimagine the results if their skin care followed suit.
About the Experts
The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.
Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.