This clay-based cleanser is not only difficult to use (clay isn't the most elegant ingredient on which to base a cleanser), but also contains several fragrant oils capable of causing irritation. The "100% pure RareMinerals ActiveSoil Complex" offers no special benefit for anyone's skin. In fact, the ingredient label lists it as "soil minerals," which means there is no way to know what is rare (if anything) about what amounts to little more than dirt in this product or to know what you're actually putting on your face. Just because it's a mineral doesn't mean it contains something rare—minerals can contain sulfur, lead, chlorides—how rare does that sound?
Between the problematic ingredients and the abrasive nature of this cleanser, it isn't a treatment we'd suggest you try, especially if having clean skin that isn't dry or tight is your goal. Please see More Info below for details on why irritation is bad for your skin.
- Clay-based formula is difficult to use and tricky to rinse completely.
- Formula contains several fragrant oils that cause irritation.
- Rare "soil minerals" have no research showing they offer any benefit to skin.
The fragrant oils in this somewhat abrasive cleanser cause irritation that hurts skin's healing process and its ability to act younger. If your skin is oily, these irritants can stimulate oil production at the base of the pore, making oily skin worse. Products like this are responsible for skin that appears dry at the surface, but feels oily underneath.
Gently exfoliate, cleanse and renew skin with this water-activated powder cleanser that’s powered by our 100% pure RareMinerals ActiveSoil Complex. This concentrated formula delivers a brighter, smoother complexion with smaller-looking pores and a naturally luminous glow.
Kaolin, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Starch, Tapioca Starch, Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Microcrystalline Cellulose, Sodium Bicarbonate, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Citric Acid, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Hydrated Silica, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Canola Oil, Soil Minerals, Calcium Sodium Phosphosilicate, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Colloidal Oatmeal, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Leaf Oil, Aniba Rosaeodora (Rosewood) Wood Extract, Cereus Grandiflorus (Cactus) Flower Extract, Eugenia Caryophyllus (Clove) Leaf Oil, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Citrus Medica Limonum (Lemon) Peel Oil, Citrus Aurantifolia (Lime) Oil, Jasminum Officinale (Jasmine) Oil, Juniperus Communis Fruit Oil, Carum Petroselinum (Parsley) Extract, Salvia Sclarea (Clary) Oil, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Oil, Quillaja Saponaria Bark Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Seed Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Powder, Beta-Carotene, Linalool, Cellulose Gum, Dimethicone, Benzyl Alcohol, Mica
Makeup is what this San Francisco-based cosmetics line is primarily about, and they use the pure and natural marketing angle to entice consumers. The self-proclaimed "healthiest, purest makeup in the world" was founded in 1976 by Diane Ranger, who left the company in the early '90s, and is now run by Leslie Blodgett, who appears regularly on QVC and the company's own infomercials to support and demonstrate her products. Blodgett is largely credited with turning the line she began into a $150 million business—no small feat. The products are sold in most Sephora boutiques and Ulta stores, though the full selection of skin-care products is most often found at the Bare Escentuals freestanding stores scattered throughout the United States.
Supporting the company's portrayal as a leader in purity are the corresponding claims that the bareMinerals makeup does not contain fragrance, oil, binders, preservatives, emulsifiers, or any other harmful chemicals. Although this line does have its advantages for someone with sensitive skin, as it turns out, bismuth oxychloride, a major ingredient in the powder formulations, can cause skin irritation, while the other minerals can be drying (Source: www.sciencelab.com/xMSDS-Bismuth_oxychloride-9923103). Regarding bismuth oxychloride, it is interesting to note that bismuth (a metallic element) seldom occurs in nature. Instead, it is a by-product of copper and lead refining, or is manufactured synthetically. Chemically, it's similar to arsenic, a fact you won't see in any advertising for bareMinerals. However, just as cosmetic-grade mineral oil is not identical to the petroleum from which it originated, neither is bismuth oxychloride identical to bismuth. The bismuth oxychloride used in cosmetics is non-toxic, but this background offers a good example of how skewed a company's definition of "natural" can be.
Aside from the health and purity claims, loose powders are as messy as it gets in terms of your vanity (countertop, not ego) and your makeup bag. The powder just gets all over the place, and the very basic packaging does not do much to minimize the mess. Additionally, while there are softer neutral shades, and some fairly exotic shades as well, most are mildly to extremely shiny and make any amount of crepey skin look more so. The face powder does provide some amount of opaque coverage, but the shine and the thickness can be a bit much. The loose powder eyeshadows and blushes apply in a somewhat lighter way, though they still provide significant coverage. Many women ask me about mineral makeup and whether or not it really is better for skin. The answer to that question is "No."
Although most mineral makeup is innocuous, the texture, appearance, and application have difficulties that make it not comparable to today's best liquid or pressed-powder foundations. We agree with bareMinerals' stance that foundation shouldn't look or feel like a mask, nor should there be a line of demarcation where the application stops. However, their foundations are not the only ones able to achieve this, and there is no inherent benefit to this type of foundation over numerous other options.
There isn't much to say about the skin-care products, but what's worth paying attention to is noted in the At-a-Glance section.
For more information about Bare Escentuals, call 1.888.795.4747 or visit www.bareescentuals.com.