Ideal Flawless BB Beauty Balm Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 15 Sunscreen

1.00 fl. oz. for $ 10.00
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Brand Overview

Avon's contribution to the BB cream craze has its strong points, chiefly the broad-spectrum, mineral-based sun protection its titanium dioxide active ingredient provides.

The big claim at play is that this is supposed to be a 10-in-1 formula, though reading the fine print reduces this description to wordplay rather than 10 significant benefits for skin. Here's a quick rundown of some of the benefits: evens skin tone; visibly minimizes redness; conceals flaws; and smooths skin. That sounds like what any good foundation can do, right?

BB creams can be great, but there are great foundations and tinted moisturizers, too. In essence, whether you use a BB cream or a tinted moisturizer, these products are all about convenience: sun protection, moisture, and sheer skin tone–correcting color from one product.

The formulas differ widely from company to company, but sun protection and light coverage color are the norms—and that's exactly what Avon's BB cream provides., Bbut, the best also have impressive combinations of antioxidants and other beneficial ingredients, something Avon's is somewhat lacking.

The silky, somewhat fluid lotion blends readily, providing light coverage and a soft, natural-looking satin-matte finish best for normal to slightly dry or combination skin.

Unlike many BB creams, Avon offers more than just two or three shades; however, only three of them (Light, Light Medium, and Medium Deep) are highly recommended. The darkest shade (Medium Deep) dries to an unflattering orange-ish hue that won't work for most dark skin tones. The Light Medium shade is slightly peach and tends to get peachier as it sets.

The fragrance-free formula contains some decent water-binding agents, but nothing that means you should skip applying your regular anti-aging treatment, serum, etc.

  • Provides broad-spectrum sun protection.
  • Fragrance-free formula is suitable for sensitive skin.
  • Inexpensive.
  • Natural-looking finish.
  • Contains only a dusting of beneficial anti-aging ingredients (beyond the sunscreen).
  • A couple of the shades don't resemble real skin tones.
Jar Packaging: No
Tested on animals: Yes
Active Ingredient: Titanium Dioxide 5.40%; Inactive Ingredients: Water, Cyclopentasiloxane, Phenyl Trimethicone, Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, PEG-10 Dimethicone, Dimethicone, Sodium Chloride, Trifluoromethyl C1-4 Alkyl Dimethicone, Nylon-12, Octyldodecyl Neopentanoate, Polysilicone-11, Quaternium-90, Bentonite, Aluminum Hydroxide, Caprylyl Glycol, Stearic Acid, Octyldodecyl Stearoyl Stearate, Phenoxyethanol, Methyl Undecylenate, Ethyl Undecylenate, HDI/Trimethylol Hexyllactone Crosspolymer, Tetrasodium EDTA, Triethoxysiloxyethyl Polydimethylsiloxyethyl Dimethicone, Propylene Carbonate, Hexylene Glycol, Calcium PCA, Zinc PCA, Hexyl Laurate, Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone, Polyglyceryl-4 Isostearate, Methicone, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Fruit Juice, Silica, Tocopheryl Acetate, Saccharomyces Copper Ferment, Saccharomyces Magnesium Ferment, Saccharomyces Zinc Ferment, Saccharomyces Malachite Ferment, Saccharomyces Tourmaline Ferment. May Contain: Titanium Dioxide, Mica, Iron Oxides

Avon At-A-Glance

Strengths: Broad-spectrum sun protection from most of the SPF products; a selection of good cleansers, moisturizers, and serums; a phenomenal concealer and a handful of other excellent makeup products at bargain prices; the company provides complete ingredient lists on its Web site and offers some of the most helpful Customer Service associates in the industry.

Weaknesses: The Clearskin products are mostly irritating and poor choices for anyone battling blemishes; the Anew Clinical lineup isn't as impressive as its made out to be; an over-reliance on jar packaging diminishes the antioxidants found in many Avon moisturizers; endless, unnecessarily repetitive moisturizers with exaggerated, outlandish claims; some of the foundations look unnatural.

The last few years have been an interesting time for the world's largest direct seller. Avon is sold in 120 countries and has an enormous range of products that goes beyond skin care and makeup, all sold by five million Avon representatives racking up annual sales of over $8 billion (Source: www.avoncompany.com). Yet due to several quarters of lackluster or poor financial performance, the company announced a multiyear restructuring plan in 2006. The anticipated cost of these changes is upwards of $500 million, which includes downsizing under-performing areas and focusing on re-marketing their star products. In recent years, those key products have had "cosmeceutical" appeal, with claims that have gone beyond reality (but over-exaggerated claims sell big in the cosmetics industry).

The Anew Clinical line ushered in several products claiming to work like (or, in some instances, better than) cosmetic corrective procedures. Whether you are considering laser treatments, Botox, Thermage, collagen injections, or even liposuction, the ads for Anew Clinical were designed to make you rethink that decision.

It is definitely impressive that Avon invested $100 million on a state-of-the-art research and product development facility in New York, but despite some innovative products that compete with the best of the best (typically for much less money), no cosmetics company has (or will) produce skin-care products that rival or beat the results obtainable from medical procedures. It's admittedly easier to slather on a cream or stroke a pad over your face than to make an office call and shoulder the expense for a cosmetic corrective procedure, but in this case convenience and savings don't equal - or even come close to - comparable results. And lest we forget, despite the onslaught of so-called cosmeceutical products claiming to mimic the results such procedures provide, the number of these procedures being performed increases each year. If any of these works-like-(insert cosmetic corrective procedure here) products did work, the number of procedures would be declining, not rising.

The National Advertising Division (NAD) took issue with several claims Avon made in ads for their Anew Clinical products (Source: www.nadreview.org/default.asp?SessionID=1149178&DocType=1&CaseType=1). In some cases, Avon reworded their claims in ad reprints, while in others they "respectfully disagreed" with the NAD conclusions but agreed to take their comments into consideration for future ads. We'll see how this turns out, but, based on their current ads, the message remains that Anew Clinical products are at the forefront of making cosmetic corrective procedure results as easy as calling your Avon representative and reciting your credit card number.

As a major international cosmetics company, Avon has several initiatives in place that prove its commitment to women and the environment. Whether donating to women's health concerns (most notably breast cancer), surpassing environmental regulations, or financially supporting alternative methods to animal testing, Avon's principles are responsible and admirable. If you pay attention to the best of what they have to offer, you will not only be supporting Avon's mission to improve the lives of women but also gaining some wonderful products, making it a win-win situation.

For more information about Avon, call (800) 500-AVON or visit www.avon.com.

Avon Makeup

Avon may be viewed as a skin-care innovator, but when it comes to makeup they're more follow-the-leaders than trail blazers. Admittedly, their foundations, powders, blush, and lipsticks have smoother, more state-of-the-art textures than ever, but with few exceptions none of them are setting a precedent that other, more innovative companies are likely to follow.

You will find some outstanding Avon makeup products to consider, but perhaps due to the sheer size of the collection there are far too many mediocre products, especially among the eyeshadows, pencils, and mascaras. Given that Avon isn't as easy to obtain as comparable products at your local drug or department store, many of the makeup items end up being a tough sell. After all, who wants to go out of their way for average products? Turning to what Avon does really well, you'll find their loose and pressed powders have amazingly silky textures and natural finishes. Their blushes are wonderful, and a few of the lipsticks and foundations are definitely worth talking about with enthusiasm. Another positive point is that Avon regularly discounts their makeup, often upwards of 50% during any given campaign (Avon's campaigns run for two weeks and the specials change each time). If you shop at the right time, the best of Avon color can be yours for less than you'd pay for most low-cost drugstore makeup.

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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