These dual-textured exfoliating pads are steeped in a solution that's mostly water and alcohol. The amount of alcohol poses a serious problem for all skin types and is the main reason these pads aren't recommended.
The other problematic aspect of the formula is lavender oil, a source of fragrance that may smell soothing but is a problem for all skin types. See More Info to learn why lavender oil and alcohol are two ingredients no one's skin needs.
With some major formulary tweaks, these pads could have been an excellent way to exfoliate skin. They contain a pH-correct blend of AHAs (lactic and glycolic acids) and BHA (salicylic acid) with some soothing antioxidant plant extracts. The citrus and sugarcane extracts do not function like AHAs, but the citrus does pose a risk of irritation.
Lavender Oil: Research indicates that components of lavender, specifically linalool, can be cytotoxic, which means that topical application causes skin-cell death (Source: Cell Proliferation, June 2004, pages 221–229). Lavender leaves contain camphor, which is a known skin irritant. Because the fragrance constituents in lavender oil oxidize when exposed to air, lavender oil is a pro-oxidant, and this enhanced oxidation increases its irritancy on skin (Source: Contact Dermatitis, September 2008, pages 143–150). Lavender oil is the most potent form, and even small amounts of it (0.25% or less) are problematic. Although it's fine as an aromatherapy agent for inhalation or relaxation, it is a must to avoid in skin-care products (Sources: Psychiatry Research, February 2007, pages 89–96; and www.naturaldatabase.com).
Alcohol in Skin Care: Alcohol in skin-care products causes dryness and free-radical damage, and impairs the skin's ability to heal. The irritation it causes damages healthy collagen production and can stimulate oil production at the base of the pore, making oily skin worse (Sources: Biochimica et Biophysica Acta, May 2012, pages 1410–1419; Alcoholism, Clinical and Experimental Research, January 2011, pages 83–90; "Skin Care—From the Inside Out and Outside In," Tufts Daily, April 1, 2002; eMedicine Journal, May 8, 2002, volume 3, number 5, www.emedicine.com; Cutis, February 2001, pages 25–27; Contact Dermatitis, January 1996, pages 12–16; and http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/arh27-4/277-284.htm).
These intensive glow pads infuse skin with potent vitamins and minerals and increase cell turnover to deliver incredible luminosity and noticeably improved skin tone and texture.
Water/Aqua/Eau, SD Alcohol 40B (Alcohol Denat.), Glycerin, Isononyl Isononanoate, Vaccinium Myrtillus Fruit/Leaf Extract, Lactic Acid, Glycolic Acid, Soil Minerals, Hydrolyzed Candida Saitoana Extract, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Lens Esculenta (Lentil) Fruit Extract, Citrullus Lanatus (Watermelon) Fruit Extract Saccharomyces/Xylinum/Black Tea Ferment, Saccharum Officinarum (Sugar Cane) Extract/Saccharum Officinarum, Citrus Limon (Lemon) Fruit Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Fruit Extract, Acer Saccharum (Sugar Maple) Extract, Euglena Gracilis Extract, Ceramide 2, Salicylic Acid, Retinyl Palmitate, Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Seed Extract, Lavandula Hybridia (Lavandin) Oil, Lavendula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Tocopherol, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Lactate, Sodium PCA, Poloxamer 184, Sodium Benzoate, Sodium Hydroxide, Ethylhexylglycerin, Linalool, Anthemis Nobilis Flower Oil.
Bare Escentuals At-a-Glance
Makeup is what this San Francisco-based cosmetics line is primarily about, and they use the pure and natural marketing angle to entice consumers. Founded in 1976 by Diane Ranger, who left the company in the early '90s Bare Escentuals was one of the first brands to introduce the concept of loose powder foundation. Since then, they have moved beyond it to include liquid foundations and tinted moisturizers and an ever expanding line of color cosmetics as well as skincare products.
The products are sold in most Sephora boutiques and Ulta stores, though the full selection of skincare products is most often found at the Bare Escentuals freestanding stores scattered throughout the United States.
We should note that loose powder makeup does take some practice to get the hang of—yet there is no denying that this type of foundation has its fan base. There is a lot to love about Bare Escentuals, even if mineral makeup isn’t your thing (especially their price ranges, which have remained affordable in comparison to many of their neighbors at Sephora).
Strengths: Good makeup removers; a few well-formulated powders with SPF; some nice eyeshadows and impressive mascaras; some impressive foundations; several elegant brush options; not too expensive.
Weaknesses: Some of the loose powder products have texture and finish concerns; some of the skincare contain potentially problematic ingredients.
For more information about Bare Escentuals, call 1.888.795.4747 or visit www.bareescentuals.com.
The Beautypedia and Paula’s Choice Research teams have one mission: To help you find the best products for your skin, whether they’re from Paula’s Choice or another brand. By combining efforts, we’re able to share scientific research and remain committed to the highest standards based on our decades of experience objectively reviewing thousands upon thousands of skincare and makeup formularies in all price ranges.
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