La Roche-Posay's Rosaliac CC Cream Daily Complete Tone-Correcting Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 30 comes with a pretty simple set of claims: The brand says it can reduce redness and moisturize skin while providing broad-spectrum UV protection. While this CC cream can do at least some of that, it's an overall lackluster product due to a few unfortunate problematic ingredient choices, earning it an average, two-star rating.
Rosaliac CC Cream comes in a squeeze bottle with a clear cap and a pump-style dispenser. It's convenient packaging, and helps protect its beneficial ingredients from light and air. The product itself is a lightweight cream with a smooth texture that's easy to apply and blend. True to its claims, it provides broad-spectrum sun protection with an in-part titanium dioxide sunscreen. It also contains some beneficial emollients like shea butter, and a couple of antioxidants (like vitamin E).
The problems with this cream, however, are apparent as soon as you dispense it: It has a very strong, perfumey scent. This smell lingers for quite a while; when we wore it we found it lasted at least two or three hours after the initial application. [Other staffers could actually smell it on your face from the desk next to you! – Ed.] While some people might not mind the fragrance, how it affects the nose is not the only issue. This CC cream is designed for people with sensitive skin (including those with rosacea), and fragrance can be a potential skin irritant—making redness worse—especially when it's included at this degree. See the More Info section for additional details. La Roche-Posay says the included fragrance is actually "hypoallergenic," but that claim has little significance because there are no guidelines for what is considered hypoallergenic. See More Info as well for additional information about hypoallergenic claims.
As far as performance, this cream—which comes in a single shade that is supposed to be universal—provides light to medium coverage of redness. It dries down to a slightly dewy finish that's best for normal to dry skin tones (those with oily skin will find this too dewy). The universal shade is workable for light to medium skin tones, but has a slightly orange cast to it that becomes more apparent the more you apply. In order to get full coverage of facial redness, the amount of Rosaliac CC cream you apply will likely experience more of the orange cast, particularly if your skin tone is fair or light.
Rosaliac CC Cream Daily Complete Tone-Correcting Cream SPF 30 does wear well throughout the day without fading, and it doesn't emphasize fine lines or pores. The drawbacks, however, are too many for us to give it our recommendation—especially when these drawbacks can worsen the very condition this formula is designed to treat. We suggest instead one of the options you'll find on our list of Best Tinted Moisturizers/BB Creams/CC Creams.
Irritation from High Amounts of Fragrance: 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 for all skin types to go for all skin types (Food and Chemical Toxicology, 2008 & American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 2003).
The sneaky part about irritation is that research has demonstrated that you don't always need to see it or feel it for your skin to suffer damage, and that damage may remain hidden for a long time (Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, 2008).
In fact, the effect of inflammation in the skin is cumulative, and repeated exposure to irritants contributes to a weakened skin barrier, slower healing (including of red marks from breakouts), and a dull, uneven complexion (Aging, 2012 & Chemical Immunology and Allergy, 2012).
Hypoallergenic Claims: The term "hypoallergenic" is meant to imply that a product is unlikely or less likely to cause allergic reactions and, therefore, is better for allergy-prone or sensitive skin types, but it isn't true. There are no accepted testing methods, ingredient restrictions, regulations, guidelines, rules, or procedures of any kind, anywhere in the world, for determining whether or not a product qualifies as being hypoallergenic (Clinical and Experimental Dermatology, 2004 & Dermatologic Therapy, 2001).
We have reviewed hundreds of products labeled "hypoallergenic" or "safe for sensitive skin" that contain seriously problematic ingredients that can trigger allergic breakouts or sensitive skin reactions. And many of us have used products labeled hypoallergenic that have caused a reaction of some sort.
If sensitive or allergy-prone skin is one of your concerns, then the #1 thing to look for is products that are free of irritants. The major irritants that show up, and in an astounding number of products, especially in products labeled organic or natural, are fragrance (both synthetic and natural fragrance are equally bad for all skin types), alcohol (isopropyl, SD, or denatured alcohol), and harsh cleansing agents like sodium lauryl sulfate (not sodium laureth sulfate, which is a perfectly mild cleansing agent).
La Roche-Posay At-A-Glance
L'Oreal-owned La Roche-Posay has a pharmaceutical lineage based in France, and the company speaks of their thermal spring water as the cornerstone of their commitment to dermatological skin care. In fact, the name La Roche-Posay comes from the French town that is the source of this water, which is said to be a rich in selenium. While selenium is an element that has potent antioxidant ability, it's unclear how much the water La Roche-Posay uses contains, since all water has to go through purification processes to be to used in cosmetic products.
That aside, this brand does have a number of standout products, including some good sunscreens and anti-aging treatments. Another positive: All of its skincare is packaged in containers that will keep beneficial products protected from light and air (no jar packaging here!). Unfortunately there are some missteps, namely that some otherwise-excellent products include potentially-irritating amounts of alcohol, fragrance, or other irritants. The line could also benefit from additional products that contain more state-of-the-art ingredients. Still, for a no-frills approach to serious skin care, there are some finds to be had!
For more information about La Roche-Posay, owned by L'Oreal, call (888) 577-5226 or visit www.laroche-posay.com.
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