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Mary Kay

TimeWise Age Minimize 3D 4-in-1 Cleanser Normal Dry

4.50 fl. oz. for $ 24.00
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TimeWise Age Minimize 3D 4-in-1 Cleanser for normal to dry skin has a true fragrance problem. It's fragrant right out of the tube, during use, and the scent lingers after you rinse this mildly abrasive cleanser. Fragrance isn't skin care and its strong presence here is an irritation risk for skin and eyes. You won't see "fragrance" on the ingredient list; instead, you'll see several fragrance ingredients such as methyl dihydrojasmonate, ethylene brassylate, and more obscure, hard-to-pronounce ones like methylenedioxyphenyl methylpropanol, typically used in perfumes.

One of the four benefits alluded to in this cleanser's name is a scrub, but the beads employed here are too sparsely distributed within the base of the formula to work well for this purpose—the whole experience just feels uneven, almost as if the beads are getting in the way of an otherwise creamy-feeling lather.

In use, this feels quite soft, ably removing excess oil and makeup, and it rinses cleanly. We're typically more forgiving of fragranced formulas if they're rinsed off (such as in a cleanser) but we really need to stress just how strong and lingering this particular fragranced cleanser is. If only the scent wasn't so intrusive!

This also contains synthetic coloring agents to create a pink-tinted cleanser, an unnecessary addition that doesn't provide any extra help for your skin. Given the fragrance issue, this doesn't compare favorably to alternatives on our list of Best Cleansers.

Pros:
  • Cleanses without drying out skin.
  • Removes makeup.
  • Rich, creamy lather rinses cleanly.
Cons:
  • High amount of fragrance lingers, posing an ongoing risk of irritation.
  • Isn't as multi-tasking as it seems, and no more so than many other cleansers.
Jar Packaging: No
Tested on animals: Yes

This multitasking cleanser removes complexion-dulling impurities and leaves skin feeling clean, exfoliated and looking brighter.

Water, Cetearyl Alcohol, Sodium Stearoyl Glutamate, Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Acrylates Copolymer, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Propanediol, PPG-2 Hydroxyethyl Coco/Isostearmide, Glycerin, Hydrolyze Corn Starch, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Potassium Hydroxide, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Coco-Glucoside, Copernicia Cerifera (Carnauba) Wax, Oligopeptide-1, Resveratrol, Jojoba Esters, Niacinamide, Sucrose Palmitate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose, Cellulose, Hydroxypropyl Cyclodextrin, Lactose, Citric Acid, Sodium Chloride, Glyceryl Linoleate, Ethoxydiglycol, Methyl Dihydrojasmonate, Ethylene Brassylate, Tetramethyl Acetyloctahydronaphthalenes, Ethyl Linalool, Isobutyl Methyl Tetrahydropropanol, Methylenedioxyphenyl Methylpropanol, Phenylisohexanol, Trimethylbenzene Propanol, Methyl Benzodioxepinone, Disodium EDTA, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Magnesium Chloride, Magnesium Nitrate, Methylisothiazolinone, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Talc, Red 7, Red 30, Ultramarines, Titanium Dioxide.

Mary Kay At-A-Glance

Strengths: Most of the products are fragrance-free; packaging that keeps light- and air-sensitive ingredients stable during use; a handful of well-formulated moisturizers; very good eye-makeup remover; effective wrinkle filler; excellent cream blush and several other impressive makeup products.

Weaknesses: The overall collection is a mixed bag of exciting and disappointing products; several outdated moisturizers and cleansers; no AHA or acceptable BHA products; the CC Cream doesn't provide good enough UVA protection; some lackluster makeup products.

The last few years haven't been glamorous for one of the world's largest direct sellers of cosmetics. Mary Kay lost a lawsuit filed by TriStrata, the company whose founders hold over 100 patents on the use of AHAs in skin-care products. It was revealed that Mary Kay's former AHA products infringed on three of these patents, and, after some back-and-forths in court, Mary Kay ended up paying royalties of over $40 million (interest included) to TriStrata. Perhaps because they're still licking their wounds after this defeat, the company has not launched any new AHA products, and no longer sells the ones that were in question during the legal battle (Source: www.bizjournals.com/dallas/stories/2006/04/03/daily26.html).

However, the company's spin on the issue of AHAs is that they no longer use them because skin-care technology has advanced. That's an interesting twist, but the fact of the matter is that AHA products, when well-formulated, are still considered advanced and capable of doing far more for skin than the alternatives Mary Kay has devised (including an at-home microdermabrasion scrub and products with vitamin C derivatives).

Although they're not a company for you if you are looking for exfoliants (though you should be looking for a good exfoliant), Mary Kay has recently developed a surprising number of excellent products. With over 1.6 million Mary Kay consultants selling products in 30 countries, this family-owned company (founder Mary Kay Ash passed away in 2001) has slowly been proving that they intend to remain competitive with the best of the best. A refreshing change of pace is the omission of fragrance from almost all of the products. Now that is what we call progress!

Despite its size and capital (wholesale figures were $3 billion in 2012), Mary Kay still has a lot to learn. For instance, although their guiding philosophy of empowering women is admirable, the assortment of products still leaves much to be desired. Yes, things are looking up, but there are several weak spots that keep Mary Kay from being in the same league as Avon, Estee Lauder, Procter & Gamble (Olay), and Johnson & Johnson (Neutrogena, Aveeno, RoC). These include outdated cleansers, toners, and moisturizers, along with letdowns in products designed for oily, blemish-prone skin. The TimeWise product range has expanded considerably, and offers a few state-of-the-art products worthy of its name (although, as with all skin-care products, they're not going to turn back the hands of time and erase all signs of aging).

If improvements like those in Mary Kay's latest products were translated to the entire line, it would be standing much taller, at least as far as what current, substantiated skin-care research indicates is optimum for creating and maintaining healthy skin. As is, this is a line to approach with a keen understanding of what to focus on and what to avoid. One last bit of good news: Mary Kay offers well-packaged samples of selected products, either directly or from your consultant.

Unless mentioned otherwise, all Mary Kay products are fragrance-free.

Note: Mary Kay is categorized as a brand that tests on animals because their products are sold in China. Although Mary Kay 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 Research Team.

For more information about Mary Kay, call (800) 627-9529 or visit www.marykay.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.