Even Better Skin Tone Correcting Moisturizer SPF 20
The questions about this daytime moisturizer with sunscreen have been pouring in, no doubt in response to Clinique’s intense advertising campaign. We admit, the claims are enticing, but what it comes down to is that this is just another in-part avobenzone sunscreen, similar to others from Clinique’s Superdefense line, right down to the price and the unfortunate use of jar packaging. Interestingly, the Superdefense products offer SPF 25, but in this case the Even Better with SPF 20 is supposed to be the one that provides a “high level” defense!
Other than the difference in SPF rating, the main point of difference between Even Better and Superdefense is that Even Better claims to “break apart surface darkening and exfoliate it away.” That’s an enticing claim, but one that won’t come true. The only ingredient in Even Better with proven exfoliating ability is salicylic acid (BHA), which when properly formulated, is a great exfoliant (among other benefits). In this product, however, both the low amount of salicylic acid (less than 1%) and the high pH don’t permit it to work as well as it could.
You’ll get reliable broad-spectrum sun protection from this moisturizer for normal to slightly dry skin, but that’s about it. Keeping skin protected from sunlight will help prevent future discolorations, but that’s true for all well-formulated sunscreens. But, back to the jar packaging issue: It’s a shame Clinique is still relying on jars. As is the case with most of their moisturizers, those with and without sunscreen, this contains a brilliant array of beneficial ingredients for skin, but many of them won’t remain stable due to the jar packaging.
Imagine erasing past damage to create a more even skin tone while protecting skin from future darkening with high-level UVA/UVB defense. Delivers soothing hydration as specialized ingredients break apart surface darkening and exfoliate it away. Instantly brightens, clarifies.
Strengths: A few excellent moisturizers and serums; excellent sunscreens; very good cleansers and eye makeup removers; unique mattifying products; impressive selection of foundations, good concealers; some remarkable mascaras; much-improved eyeshadows, lip colors and blush formulas.
Weaknesses: Bar soaps (which can clog pores and dull skin); alcohol-based toners; unfortunate choice of jar packaging for antioxidant-loaded moisturizers.
Estee Lauder-owned Clinique launched the concept of cosmetics being "allergy-tested," "hypoallergenic," "100% fragrance-free," and "dermatologist tested." Of those marketing claims, the only one with significance is "100% fragrance-free," which, for the most part, Clinique maintains (although it does add some fragrant extracts to a few products). Unfortunately, terms like hypoallergenic and dermatologist tested arent regulated by the FDA and can mean anythingthus, you still need to rely on the ingredient list to tell you whether their product contains any ingredients with the potential to irritate skin.
That inconvenient fact aside, Clinique is leading the way with cutting-edge, state-of-the-art moisturizers and serums, plus some formidable makeup and more than a few excellent sunscreens. While Clinique has some products that we see as missteps for reasons discussed in their reviews, more than ever, what they offer is quite good (just have realistic expectations, as some of their claims go beyond what their products are capable of).
Turning to makeup, Clinique continues to offer a vast palette of colors and textures, especially with their enormous selection of foundationsmany of which feature effective sunscreens. Without a doubt, the numerous formulas offer something for every skin type and almost every skin colorthough the blushes, eye makeup and lip colors are frequently not pigmented enough for deeper skin tones.
The bottom line is that, despite a few shortcomings, Clinique is one of the most comprehensive (and comparably affordable) department-store makeup lines, and it is completely understandable why they enjoy such broad appeal.
Note: Clinique is categorized as one that tests on animals because their products are sold in China. Although Clinique does not conduct animal testing for their products sold elsewhere, the Chinese government requires imported cosmetics be tested on animals, so foreign companies retailing there must comply. This requirement is why some brands state that they dont test on animals unless required by law. Animal rights organizations consider cosmetic companies retailed in China to be brands that test on animals, and so does the Beautypedia Team.
For more information about Clinique, call (800) 419-4041 or visit www.clinique.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.