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belif

Pore Cleaner Moisturizer

4.22 fl. oz. for $ 32.00
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Brand Overview

belif's Pore Cleaner Moisturizer sounds like the solution for enlarged pores and oily skin, with its claims of minimizing pores and reducing sebum production, but its old-school approach could end up making oily skin worse, not better.

This fluid-gel moisturizer comes in a convenient pump container. First contact feels soothing: It's lightweight and fast-absorbing, which makes it aesthetically appealing. The brand claims this can serve the purpose of a toner, essence, and moisturizer all in one, and for those with oily skin its consistency could serve as all three. The formula contains some antioxidants and skin-soothing ingredients to reinforce this three-in-one approach—but then things go south.

The rest of the formula includes a laundry list of ingredients proven to irritate skin, including denatured alcohol, satsuma peel extract, eucalyptus and mint leaf extract, several citrus oils, and fragrance ingredients. None of these is good news for pores!

This concoction makes for a generally pleasant-smelling product, but it's not doing skin any favors; in fact, these ingredients could trigger increased oil production, the opposite of this product's purpose (see More Info for details)! You'll find far superior options on our list of best moisturizers.

Pros:
  • Lightweight, fast-absorbing gel is aesthetically appealing.
  • Contains antioxidants and skin-soothing ingredients.
Cons:
  • Exposes skin to numerous irritating ingredients.
  • Irritating ingredients can lead to increased oil production.
More Info:

Irritating Ingredients: We cannot stress this enough: Sensitizing, harsh, abrasive, and/or fragrant ingredients are bad for all skin types. Daily application of skincare products that contain these irritating ingredients is a major way we unwittingly do our skin a disservice!

Irritating ingredients are a problem because they can lead to visible problems, such as redness, rough skin, dull skin, dryness, increased oil production, and clogged pores, and they contribute to making signs of aging worse.

Switching to non-irritating, gentle skincare products can make all the difference in the world. Non-irritating products are those packed with beneficial ingredients that also replenish and soothe skin, without any volatile ingredients, such as those present in fragrance ingredients, whether natural or synthetic.

A surprising fact: Research has demonstrated that you do not need to see or feel the effects of irritants on your skin for your skin to be suffering, and visible damage may not become apparent for a long time. Don't get lulled into thinking that if you don't see or feel signs of irritation, everything is OK.

Generally, it's best to eliminate, or minimize as much as possible, your exposure to ingredients that are known to irritate skin. There are many completely non-irritating products that contain effective ingredients, so there's no reason to put your skin at risk with products that include ingredients research has shown can be a problem.

References for this information:

Journal of Dermatological Sciences, January 2015, pages 28–36

International Journal of Cosmetic Science, August 2014, pages 379–385

Clinical Dermatology, May-June 2012, pages 257–262

Aging, March 2012, pages 166–175

Chemical Immunology and Allergy, March 2012, pages 77–80

Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, June 2008, pages 124–135

Food and Chemical Toxicology, February 2008, pages 446–475

American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 2003, pages 789–798

Jar Packaging: No
Tested on animals: Yes
A translucent, watery-gel moisturizer combining the toner, essence, and moisturizer steps into one to minimize the appearance of pores while reducing sebum production for a clearer, smoother appearance.
Water, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, 1, 2-Hexanediol, Ethyl Isostearate, Glycereth-26, Alcohol Denat., Citrus Unshiu Peel Extract, Panthenol, Hydrogenated Polydecene, Taraxacum Officinale (Dandelion) Rhizome/Root Extract, Eucalyptus Globulus Leaf Extract, Rosa Canina Fruit Extract, Mentha Rotundfolia Leaf Extract, Nepeta Cataria Extract, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Extract, Rubus Idaeus (Raspberry) Leaf Extract, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Stellaria Media (Chickweed) Extract, Baptisia Tinctoria Root Extract, Rosa Damascena Flower Extract, Althaea Officinalis Root Extract, Spiraea Ulmaria Root Extract, Viola Tricolor Extract, Alchemilla Vulgaris Leaf Extract, Salvia Miltiorrhiza Root Extract, Acorus Calamus Root Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Angelica Gigas Root Extract, Paeonia Suffruticosa Root Extract, Xanthan Gum, Trisodium EDTA, Tromethamine, Acrylates/C10-30 Acrylate Crosspolymer, Citrus Aurantifolia (Lime) Oil, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Oil, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Leaf Oil, Eucalyptus Globulus Leaf Oil, Pelargonium Graveolens Flower Oil, Citral, Citronellol, Limonene, Geraniol, Linalool.

Owned by South Korean corporate giant LG (yes, the electronics company), belif is a natural skin care brand whose main selling point is the fusion of the sensibilities of Korean skin care – sheet masks and essences are featured prominently - with the philosophy of an old-fashioned European apothecary.

The result is an offering of skin care products that is best described as hit-or-miss. Most of them contain a mix of herbs based off “Napier’s Formula,” a blend of herbs concocted by Scottish apothecary Duncan Napier in the mid-19th century. Anecdotal stories tell of its miraculous effect on skin, though there’s no hard research showing this specific blend of ingredients is better than any other beneficial skin care ingredients.

There are some good products with a robust blend of antioxidants to be found, but most of belief’s lineup contains fragrance (or additional fragrance ingredients), and the brand usually packages its moisturizers in jars (which puts beneficial air- and light-sensitive skin care ingredients at risk because of exposure to both). Were it not for these two missteps, we’d be much more enthusiastic to recommend this brand as an option.

You can find out more about belif by visiting the brand’s website at https://www.belifusa.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.