Giorgio Armani

Crema Nera Obsidian Mineral Regenerating Cream

1.70 fl. oz. for $ 235.00
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If more consumers knew how to interpret a cosmetic ingredient list, they’d be insulted by what an average formula this is for the money. Yes, it has a silky, lightweight cream texture but so do countless other moisturizers that cost markedly less.

There is nothing in this moisturizer to justify its cost, unless you believe Armani’s story that the obsidian mineral (derived from petrified lava) is the fountain of youth. There is zero research proving that’s the case, and if this volcanic fossil extract is truly miraculous, why isn’t in more products owned by L’Oreal (of which Armani is but one)?

You may be impressed because the formula for this moisturizer is patented, but don’t be: a patent doesn’t mean the product works or that the claims are true. It’s merely a license granted to the company for developing a unique formula reserved for their use. “Unique” doesn’t mean “effective”, either.

There just really isn’t any reason to consider this moisturizer over any of the others on our Best Moisturizers list, even if you have an unlimited cosmetics budget.

Jar Packaging: Yes
Tested on animals: Yes

A unique cell regenerating cream inspired by the Italian island of Pantelleria. Containing a unique formulation of obsidian, a natural mineral compound extracted from the petrified lava on Pantelleria, crema nera perfectly captures the Earth's rejuvenating secrets. This exceptional, patented formula is scientifically proven to actively restore and revitalize skin's natural radiance and regenerate surface cells.

Water, Dimethicone, Isohexadecane, Glycerin, Paraffin, Polyclyceryl-4 Isostearate, Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone, Hexyl Laurate, Silica, Nylon-12, Polyethylene, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Octyldodecanol, Sodium Lactate, Potassium PCA, Methylsilanol Mannuronate, Ferrous Gluconate, Perlite, Phenoxyethanol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Ammonium Polyacryloyldimethyl Taurate, Triethanolamine, Methylparaben, Sodium Citrate, Propylparaben, Cholorpehnesin, Capryloyl Salycylic Acid, Titanium Dioxide, Adenosine, Pentasodium Pentetate, Linalool, Fragrance

Giorgio Armani At-A-Glance

Strengths: Outstanding foundations; superb powder textures; a brilliant shimmer fluid; perfect bronzers; some excellent lip color options; a neutral palette makes this line a must-see.

Weaknesses: Expensive; the skincare is underwhelming, especially given the cost (though the claims sound good!); some of the SPF-rated products do not supply adequate broad spectrum protection; most of the mascaras aren't as impressive as they should be.

Italian fashion designer Giorgio Armani is credited with giving tailored elegance, power, and sex appeal to standbys like men's suits, and turning Hollywood's A-list stars into fashion icons as they parade through countless award ceremonies adorned in his simple yet elegant creations. According to Armani, "Elegance doesn't mean being noticed, it means being remembered." That statement has been parlayed into the designer's makeup collection, where the products are replete with the textures, colors, and flawless application that assure your natural beauty will be memorable rather than masked.

Because Armani has always been passionate about textures, it's no surprise that his makeup (which is the main reason to check out this line)presents an impressive collection that features some of the smoothest, lightest textures you're likely to find. From foundations to powders, eyeshadows, and mascaraseven pencilsthe makeup selection includes some truly stellar products. According to the brochure for Armani's makeup, the supreme textures and silky application are the result of Micro-fil technology. This supposedly allows for a precise blending and layering of select ingredients, offering a heightened sense of color that fits like a second skin.

Regardless of how that technology is labeled, almost all of the makeup contains standard silicone polymers along with ordinary ingredients like nylon-12. Of course, many cosmetics companies have their equivalent version of Micro-fil, but Armani seems to have taken it one step further, though not always toward desired results. For example, the eyeshadows, while very smooth and easy to blend, aren't much for intensity, a point the counter personnel made clear.

There are a few other instances where the pricey products aren't all they're made out to be, but this is the world of cosmetics, and although the fantasy is for every product to be perfect, that's hardly ever the reality. Still, there are many compelling reasons to explore this collection. Although not fully distributed across the United States, it has a presence in most major cities and the products may be purchased on Armani's Web site. Makeup is where it's at for Giorgio Armani's cosmetics line. The skin care was a blatant, exceedingly overpricedafterthought and is not worth considering.

For more information about Giorgio Armani, owned by L'Oreal, call (877) ARMANI-3 or visit www.giorgioarmanibeauty-usa.com.

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.

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