Talk about a long time coming! Well past the time when Clinique clearly knew Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion wasn’t dramatically different in the least, they still recommended their poorly formulated lotion as an essential skin-care step in their famous three-step routine.
Although the original lotion remains a mundane, not-as-good-as-Lubriderm option for normal to dry skin, it is and always has been ill-suited for those dealing with oiliness or breakouts. Therefore, for those loyal to Clinique’s basic regimen and for those looking for a more affordable department-store moisturizer, Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel is a welcome addition.
The formula is more a lotion than a gel, but does feel quite light and silky on the skin. It does not contain any oils or heavy thickening agents, and this fragrance-free moisturizer is appropriate for normal to slightly dry or slightly oily skin. The only issue we have with the product is its meager antioxidant content (most of which function best as anti-irritants). Most of Clinique’s moisturizers are brimming with state-of-the-art ingredients, but this one, though certainly effective for its intended skin types, is plain by comparison—yet dramatically better than their original and still incredibly popular lotion.
The oil-free moisture “drink” developed by Clinique’s dermatologists to maintain optimal moisture balance for skins comfortable in the cheeks but oily in the T-zone or oily all over. Oil-free formula softens, smooths, improves.
Water/Aqua/Eau, Dimethicone, Isododecane, Butylene Glycol, Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ether Dimethyl Silane, Glycerin, Laminaria Saccharina Extract, Polygonum Cuspidatum Root Extract, Saccharomyces Lysate Extract, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Hordeum Vulgare (Barley) Extract/Extrait D’Orge, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seedcake, Caffeine, Triethelose, Sodium Hyaluronate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Sucrose, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria), Polysilicone-11, Silica, Propylene Glycol Dicaprate, Oleth-10, Lactobacillus Ferment, Laureth-23, Laureth-4, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/VP Copolymer, Caprylyl Glycol, Hexylene Glycol, Tromethamine, Disdoium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Potassium Sorbate, Yellow 5, Red 4, Yellow 6
Strengths: A few excellent moisturizers and serums; excellent sunscreens; very good cleansers and eye makeup removers; unique mattifying products; impressive selection of foundations, good concealers; some remarkable mascaras; much-improved eyeshadows, lip colors and blush formulas.
Weaknesses: Bar soaps (which can clog pores and dull skin); alcohol-based toners; unfortunate choice of jar packaging for antioxidant-loaded moisturizers.
Estee Lauder-owned Clinique launched the concept of cosmetics being "allergy-tested," "hypoallergenic," "100% fragrance-free," and "dermatologist tested." Of those marketing claims, the only one with significance is "100% fragrance-free," which, for the most part, Clinique maintains (although it does add some fragrant extracts to a few products). Unfortunately, terms like “hypoallergenic” and “dermatologist tested” aren’t regulated by the FDA and can mean anything—thus, you still need to rely on the ingredient list to tell you whether their product contains any ingredients with the potential to irritate skin.
That inconvenient fact aside, Clinique is leading the way with cutting-edge, state-of-the-art moisturizers and serums, plus some formidable makeup and more than a few excellent sunscreens. While Clinique has some products that we see as missteps for reasons discussed in their reviews, more than ever, what they offer is quite good (just have realistic expectations, as some of their claims go beyond what their products are capable of).
Turning to makeup, Clinique continues to offer a vast palette of colors and textures, especially with their enormous selection of foundations—many of which feature effective sunscreens. Without a doubt, the numerous formulas offer something for every skin type and almost every skin color—though the blushes, eye makeup and lip colors are frequently not pigmented enough for deeper skin tones.
The bottom line is that, despite a few shortcomings, Clinique is one of the most comprehensive (and comparably affordable) department-store makeup lines, and it is completely understandable why they enjoy such broad appeal.
Note: Clinique is categorized as one that tests on animals because their products are sold in China. Although Clinique 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 brand’s state that they don’t 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 Team.
For more information about Clinique, call (800) 419-4041 or visit www.clinique.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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