Like most Dior products, this fluid moisturizer is highly fragranced. Fragrance isn't skin care (see More Info for details) and, in fact, it's disappointing this moisturizer contains so little of value for skin that's fighting discolorations. If you want fragrance, Dior's perfumes dabbed behind your ears is enough, and that won't hurt your skin.
The formula is mostly water, silicone, alcohol, slip agents, film-forming agents, and mica for a shiny finish. The amount of alcohol is cause for concern, as high amounts of this ingredient can cause numerous problems for skin, described in the More Info section.
Because the formula contains a moderate amount of titanium dioxide, it has a subtle whitening effect on the skin, but this effect is strictly cosmetic; in fact, it's disappointing that the formula contains nothing proven to lighten brown spots. You might end up with skin that just looks cosmetically and temporarily whiter and shinier, but you can do so much more with a good foundation and concealer or a skin-care product with proven skin-lightening ingredients.
What about the Icelandic Glacial Water referred to in the claims? Pay no attention to marketing gimmicks like this because there's no special benefit to this water versus water from, say, the Chicago suburbs or the Australian coast, and there certainly is no research showing otherwise. As far as your skin is concerned, water is water—but, we suppose when Dior is charging this much for something so average, it helps to have a potentially compelling story.
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).
Daily use of products that contain a high amount of fragrance, whether the fragrant ingredients are synthetic or natural, causes chronic irritation that can damage healthy collagen production, lead to or worsen dryness, and impair your skin's ability to heal. Fragrance-free is the best way to go for all skin types. If fragrance in your skin-care products is important to you, it should be a very low amount to minimize the risk to your skin (Sources: Inflammation Research, December 2008, pages 558–563; Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, June 2008, pages 124–135, and November-December 2000, pages 358–371; Journal of Investigative Dermatology, April 2008, pages 15–19; Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, March 2008, pages 78–82; Mechanisms of Ageing and Development, January 2007, pages 92–105; and British Journal of Dermatology, December 2005, pages S13–S22).
With Icelandic Glacial Water the first whitening skincare treatment with an ultra-purifying action by Dior helps moderate sebum production for a perfectly transparent complexion.
Water, Cyclopentasiloxane, Alcohol, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Vinyl Dimethicone/Methicone Silsesquioxane Crosspolymer, Mica, Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate, Phenyl Trimethicone, Cetyl PEG/PPPG-10/1 Dimethicone, Aluminum Hydroxide, Silica, Sodium Chloride, Sorbitan Sesquioleate, Titanium Dioxide, Betula Alba Juice, Phenoxyethanol, Parfum, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Dimethicone, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Lecithin, Propylene Carbonate, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Xanthan Gum, Sodium Myristoyl Glutamate, BHT, Dilsea Carnosa Extract, Sodium Stearate, Malva Sylvestris (Mallow) Extract, Citronellol, Atelocollagen, Zinc Gluconate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone, Sodium Citrate, Potassium Sorbate, Citric Acid, Hibiscus Esculentus Fruit Extract, Spirea Ulmaria Extract, Plankton Extract, Sodium DNA, Disodium Phosphate, Biotin, Ergothioneine, Postassium Chloride, Potassium Phosphate, Tocopherol
Strengths:Nearly all of the SPF-related products offer sufficient UVA protection; a few extraordinary foundations and mascaras; a good liquid concealer; an excellent powder eyeshadow set; some good lipsticks and eyeliners.
Weaknesses: Expensive; lackluster moisturizers and serums that contain more fragrance and preservatives than elegant ingredients; irritating toners and self-tanners; ordinary masks; lack of products to address the needs of those with blemishes or skin discolorations; some foundations with SPF ratings that are too low; mostly average makeup brushes.
If you're looking for a clear-cut case of style winning out over substance, here it is. The Dior name is synonymous with couture fashion and countless other lifestyle accoutrements, but they continue to falter when it comes to establishing a first-rate collection of skin-care products. Of course, the company believes their products are the crème de la crème and if we're judging on aesthetics alone, we see what they mean. However, what's inside the gorgeous components is what counts for your skin, and Dior's formulas leave a lot to be desired. On one hand, it's great that all of their sunscreens contain sufficient UVA protection; on the other, all of their moisturizers either leave skin wanting more or contain problematic ingredients with no skin-redeeming qualities.
Fragrance is huge for Dior, and a visit to their counter attests to this, as fragrances line the counter right beside the skin-care tester unit. It would be better for skin if the two categories were kept separate, but in most cases the amount of fragrance added to Dior's skin-care products is greater than the token amounts of state-of-the-art ingredients (and the effectiveness of most of those is further diminished by jar packaging). If you wouldn't put perfume on your face, think twice about applying it in the form of an expensive skin-care product.
On the plus side, there are a few very good products to consider if you don't mind spending the extra money. If you're a fan of Dior's fashions and want to experiment with their cosmetic products, you'll find that their makeup outshines the skin care and has improved in ways that keep the panache while making genuine improvements. Despite all manner of claims to the contrary (everything from purifying pores to lifting skin to the point that sagging is a thing of the past), the most attractive part of Dior's formulas is how they're dressed, not how they perform.
For more information about Dior, call (212) 931-2200 or visit www.dior.com.
Always fashion-forward, Dior's makeup is more well-designed and attractive than ever, offering standout products in almost every category. The most notable change over the past several years has been Dior's improved foundation formulas and shades. It's now the exception rather than the rule to find overtly peach, pink, or rose-toned shades among Dior's many complexion-enhancing options. Even better, Dior has recently introduced foundations to compensate for its previous too-low SPF efforts, with formulas available in SPF 15, 20 and 25, a couple of which even include UVA-protecting ingredients. Such a move shows that while Dior may still struggle with an overall lackluster skin care line, they are at least working to meet dermatologist-recommended benchmarks for sun protection.
You will also be very impressed with Dior's powder blush, eyeshadows (though their shiny finish is not the best for Baby Boomer eyes), the DiorSkin concealer, brow gel, and most of the mascaras. If you're a fan of lip gloss and are willing to tolerate a double-digit price, you'll be in cosmetics heaven wading through all the lip-shining options here. On the flip side, neither the standard pencils nor most of the lipsticks are worth the money. With any designer-based line built on artifice, price is more than a matter of dollars. It's indicative of a company’s image and remains a prestige factor that often speaks louder than the products themselves. Dior is guilty of maximizing its assets to play up its image, but with their makeup line the good news for you is that, for the most part, they really pay attention to what’s inside all the luxe containers, too.
One more note: Dior’s makeup tester units are much more accessible and user-friendly than for previous editions of this book. We also found their counter staff to be more accommodating and definitely less condescending than several other European-bred lines.
Note: Dior is categorized as a brand that tests on animals because its products are sold in China. Although Dior does not conduct animal testing for its 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 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 Research Team.
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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