Age Affirm Firming Day & Night Cream has some pretty lofty claims attached to it, but, ultimately, it is a product that simply cannot do what it claims and can actually end up causing more problems than you started with.
Nuance says this cream can firm skin and reduce the appearance of deep lines and wrinkles. While it does contain a good blend of emollient ingredients that will make skin feel smoother and more moisturized, it lacks a potent blend of antioxidants and other skin repairing and cell communicating ingredients (such as retinol) that can truly have an impact on deep lines and signs of aging.
As for the firming claim? There is nothing in this product that can have a significant impact on making skin firmer in any way. See More Info for what truly works in achieving firmer skin.
Further, this moisturizer's lack of sunscreen makes it a bad choice for daytime use, as the only difference between a day cream and a night cream is that the daytime product should provide sun protection (at least, if you're concerned about really preventing and reversing signs of aging).
As for the "rose petal complex" that's supposed to be the fix for your aging concerns, it comes in the form of three ingredients: violet extract, lavender flower extract, and rose extract, so the rose petal name is only one-third true. Moreover, these called-out ingredients have no benefit for skin; in fact just the opposite is true as these ingredients cause irritation and that is a problem for skin and can be considered pro-aging. Adding to the problem of irritation is the amount of fragrance this contains and the potentially sensitizing preservative methylisothiazolinone in here. None of this is good news for your skin, as both can cause irritation!
Also problematic is that this cream is packaged in a jar. That means you're introducing bacteria every time you dip your fingers into the jar, and the exposure to light and air means the antioxidants included in the formula will begin to lose their potency as soon as you twist off the lid.
All these factors combine to make this a cream to leave on the shelf for some less informed consumer to waste their money on. You'll find much better options for anti-aging products in the More Info section of this review.
Firming Claims: Many skincare products claim they can firm and lift skin, but none of them work, at least not to the extent claimed. A face-lift-in-a-bottle isn't possible, but with the right mix of products, you will see firmer skin that has a more lifted appearance—and that's exciting! To gain these youthful benefits, you must protect your skin from any and all sun damage every day, use an AHA (glycolic acid or lactic acid) or BHA (salicylic acid) exfoliant, and use products that have a wide range of antioxidants and skin-repairing ingredients. Remember, no single product can do it all; it's the combination of products that has extensive research showing it can significantly improve many of the signs of aging, such as firming skin, reducing wrinkles and brown spots, and eliminating dullness. You'll find them on our list of Best Anti-Aging/Anti-Wrinkle Products.
Jar Packaging: The fact that it's packaged in a jar means the beneficial ingredients won't remain stable once it is opened. All plant extracts, vitamins, antioxidants, and other state-of-the-art ingredients break down in the presence of air, so once a jar is opened and lets the air in, these important ingredients begin to deteriorate. Jars also are unsanitary because you're dipping your fingers into them with each use, adding bacteria, which further deteriorate the beneficial ingredients (Sources: Free Radical Biology and Medicine, September 2007, pages 818–829; Ageing Research Reviews, December 2007, pages 271–288; Dermatologic Therapy, September-October 2007, pages 314–321; International Journal of Pharmaceutics, June 12, 2005, pages 197–203; Pharmaceutical Development and Technology, January 2002, pages 1–32; International Society for Horticultural Science, www.actahort.org/members/showpdf?booknrarnr=778_5; Beautypackaging.com, and www.beautypackaging.com/articles/2007/03/airless-packaging.php).
Rose Petal Complex smoothes and firms skin, while reducing the appearance of deep lines and wrinkles.
Water( Aqua), Glycerin, Dimethicone, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetearyl Olivate, Sorbitan Olivate, Cetearyl Glucoside, Phenoxyethanol, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Squalene, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Extract, Disodium EDTA, Fragrance (Parfum), Hydroxyethylcellulose, Polysorbate 60, Methylisothiazolinone, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Palmitoyl Tripeptide-5, Allantoin, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Phospholipids, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Panthenol, Viola Odorata Extract, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, Pantothenic Acid, Sodium Hyaluronate, Rose Extract, PEG-12 Dimethicone.
A reasonably priced retinol product with packaging that keeps the retinol stable; good skin-brightening product; excellent cream body cleanser; good body cream for dry skin.
Many products contain lavender oil, which is a known skin irritant, despite its nice scent; most of the moisturizers are packaged in jars, meaning many of the beneficial ingredients will lose their effectiveness once the lid is opened; many of the “star” ingredients lack independent research proving their effectiveness; very few fragrance-free products; an anti-acne product that has the potential to make acne breakouts worse.
It’s a simple fact of the cosmetics industry, and it’s been the case for decades: A beautiful actress or model touting the benefits of a brand can have an enormous influence on how people make decisions about what products to buy! Everyone from Cindy Crawford to Jennifer Aniston has sold their face and fame to a cosmetic company to proclaim its benefit. Now, actress Salma Hayek has an eponymous line of skincare and makeup products called Nuance Salma Hayek.
Hayek’s acting career began in her native Mexico, where she became a star after appearing in successful films and telenovelas. She then made the jump to Hollywood and found commercial success in English-speaking projects, as well as branching out into directing and producing. Cosmetics companies took note of Hayek’s success and ethnic beauty, which lead to Revlon contracting Hayek to be one of their models in late 1999.
In 2011, Hayek decided to strike out on her own by creating Nuance Salma Hayek. The actress says the inspiration for the line is her grandmother, who used traditional Mexican home remedies to craft her own skincare products. Many of Nuance’s products contain the same ingredients (or at least derivatives of those ingredients) used by Hayek’s grandmother, such as blue agave and prickly pear. As nostalgic and folksy as that sounds, anecdotal stories about skin care don’t relate to the phenomenal evolution of research that now exists about skin.
While it is possible that blue agave and prickly pear are decent ingredients for skin, there is scant evidence or any research proving that to be the case. Though there certainly isn’t any negative information yet about these extracts, the fact that Nuance relies heavily on them for anti-aging benefit means they’re ignoring some truly great ingredients with vast amounts of proven research showing they work!
Even more to the point, regardless of how good an ingredient is for skin, whether the concern is dryness, acne, signs of aging, oily skin, blackheads, sagging, puffy eyes, or anything else, skin is a complex organ, and one or two good ingredients is not even remotely enough to take the best care of it. Believing these kinds of homespun tales will end up hurting your skin. The same way eating only the same two or three foods every day wouldn’t keep your body healthy, two or three ingredients won’t keep your skin healthy, either.
Aside from the marketing spin, the line itself, which is extensive, has far more negatives than positives. The facial moisturizers rely heavily on jar packaging, meaning the light-and air-sensitive ingredients in those products will start to lose their effectiveness as soon as the jar is opened. Another misstep is the inclusion of lavender oil in many products—a not-so-great natural ingredient that research has shown can cause many problems, including skin-cell death, meaning it has no place in skincare products! Yes, lavender smells good, but oftentimes what pleases your nose isn’t going to make your skin happy.
Of course, there are some standout products among Nuance’s offerings. There is a good—and affordable—retinol product, as well as an excellent skin lightener, a truly great body cleansing cream, and a body moisturizer that’s great for dry skin. As a whole, though, the line is largely unimpressive, and is bolstered more by its celebrity cache than by the strength of its products’ performance.
Note: Although Nuance Salma Hayek offers makeup, too, only the skincare is reviewed at this time. We noticed that our area CVS stores carried only a small portion of the makeup, and many items were deeply discounted, which is a sign the color line might be going away.
Nuance Salma Hayek is sold exclusively at CVS Pharmacies. For more information, visit www.cvs.com or call 1-888-607-4287.
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