Harmonie Calm Relaxing Gel-Cream for Eyes
Proving once again that products labeled as being special for the eye area are unnecessary (see More Info for details), this product contains almost all the same ingredients as seen in Decleor's Harmonie Calm Delicate Milky Cream Fluid. But unlike the Fluid (which is the better formula), this Gel-Cream for Eyes contains bitter orange oil, which contains numerous fragrance ingredients known to be irritating (Source: www.naturaldatabase.com).
As for Decleor's "Lacto Calm" complex, this eye cream contains some anti-inflammatory plant extracts (just like its facial moisturizer counterpart), but their impact on sensitive skin is muted due to the bitter orange oil and inclusion of fragrance (which shouldn't be in products designed for sensitive, reddened skin).
The bottom line is that none of this is unique or "decongesting" for skin around the eyes. If anything, the fragrant irritants can incite puffiness and encourage collagen breakdown around the eyes (see More Info for details).
Why You Don't Need an Eye Cream:
We know it's hard to believe, but the truth is you don't need a special product for the eye area, whether labeled eye cream or something else. Although there is much you can do to improve the skin around your eyes, the ingredients capable of doing that don't need to come from, and often aren't even included in, an eye cream. For example, most eye creams (such as this one) don't contain sunscreen, and that is a serious problem because it leaves the skin around your eyes vulnerable to sun damage, which will make dark circles and wrinkling worse!
You can save money and take superior care of your eye area by using your face product, if it is well formulated and appropriate for the skin type around your eyes!
Why Fragrant Ingredients are Problematic:
Daily use of products that contain a high amount of fragrance, whether the fragrant ingredients are synthetic or natural, causes chronic irritation that can damage healthy collagen production, lead to or worsen dryness, and impair your skin's ability to heal. Fragrance-free is the best way to go for all skin types. If fragrance in your skin-care products is important to you, it should be a very low amount to minimize the risk to your skin (Sources: Inflammation Research, December 2008, pages 558-563; Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, June 2008, pages 124-135, and November-December 2000, pages 358-371; Journal of Investigative Dermatology, April 2008, pages 15-19; Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, March 2008, pages 78-82; Mechanisms of Ageing and Development, January 2007, pages 92-105; and British Journal of Dermatology, December 2005, pages S13-S22).
- Contains several anti-inflammatory plant extracts.
- An eye cream for sensitive, reddened skin shouldn't contain fragrance; this does.
- Bitter orange oil isn't an ingredient to apply around the eyes, or anywhere else on skin.
This high-tolerance gel-cream with a fresh, light and melting texture is specifically formulated to care for the sensitive eye contour area. "Lacto Calm" complex, a synergy of precious flower milks, combines with decongesting and comforting plant active ingredients to gently soothe and hydrate
Strengths: None of note.
Weaknesses: Expensive; pervasive use of volatile essential oils that have limited to no benefit for skin and are known irritants; almost all the sunscreens lack the right UVA-protecting ingredients; no product to address acne or skin discolorations; inappropriate jar packaging.
What can you say about a skin-care line where almost 85% of the products contain volatile, fragrant plant oils that have research showing they are irritating to skin? Few lines in this book received so many unhappy faces for this reason aloneyet those very oils are Decleor's claim to fame. This spa-oriented company was begun in 1975 by a massage therapist and is now owned in part by Japan-based Shiseido (whose sunscreens trounce Decleor's by leaps and bounds).
Decleor is all about aromatherapy for skin. They speak freely of the purity of the essential oils they use and the distillation processes that keep them active, but that's precisely the cause for concern. Yes, lavender, bitter orange, rose, geranium, neroli, and other "essential" oils smell wonderful, but the very ingredients that create those intoxicating scents are what is responsible for causing skin irritation, inflammation, and, in some cases, phototoxic reactions. These essential oils have active constituents but, because they are not regulated as such, any company can use whichever ones they like in any concentration. Moreover, companies don't have to indicate the quantities that were used, leaving the consumer to guess. The concept of aromatherapy has well-established benefits concerning inhalation of scents and the effects they have on one's mood and, sometimes, physiological function. But enjoying these oils via inhalation (where they really can be beneficial) is different from applying them to skin, where hypersensitivity is well-documented and topical usage is cautioned (Sources: Current Pharmaceutical Design, December 2006, pages 33933399; Phytotherapy Research, September 2006, pages 758763; European Journal of Oncology Nursing, April 2006, pages 140149; The Journal of Nursing, August 2005, pages 1115; and www.naturaldatabase.com).
Not only are most of Decleor's products a giant step backward for your skin, they're also a real misfortune when you consider Decleor's terrible sunscreens and lack of truly state-of-the-art ingredients. In short, experiencing these products in a relaxing spa environment may make you feel refreshed or invigoratedbut if your goal is establishing a sensible, effective skin-care routine, youll need to keep shopping.
For more information about Decleor, call (888) 414-4471 or www.decleor.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.