09.18.2009
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Hydra-C ComplexE 24H Moisturizing Gel-Cream
Rating
1.7 fl. oz. for $22.95
Category:Skin Care > Moisturizers (Daytime and Nighttime)
Last Updated:09.18.2009
Jar Packaging:Yes
Tested on animals:No
Review Overview

This moisturizer is nearly identical to Marcelle’s Hydra-C ComplexE 24H Hydrating Fluid, and the same review applies: This moisturizer doesn’t have an SPF rating despite the fact that it contains several sunscreen ingredients (not listed as active ingredients). The second-listed ingredient is ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate, and the formula also contains avobenzone (listed by its chemical name of butyl methoxydibenzoylmethane), but it’s not listed as an active either. The lack of an SPF rating on the package and the lack of an actual percentage of active ingredients means you cannot rely on this for sun protection. The overall formula is very basic and the minimal amount of interesting ingredients it does contain would not remain stable due to the jar packaging. The touted ingredient Fillagryl is a made-up word Marcelle uses to make the truly do-nothing contents sound more impressive than they are. Despite the name, the amount of vitamin C is minuscule.

Claims

Beautiful moisturized skin all day long! Our light and refreshing gel-cream is formulated to provide all day moisture. It restores skin’s suppleness, softness and vitality all the while delaying the appearance of fine lines. Its high performing ingredients include Fillagryl™, which absorbs humidity and keeps it locked deep in the skin to release it only when needed. Its formula contains Nori extract, an algae renowned for its antioxidant and moisturizing properties as well as a mixture of antioxidant vitamins to rejuvenate the skin. Hypo-allergenic and perfume free. Ideal for normal skin.

Ingredients

Water, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Cyclomethicone, Hydrogenated Polyisobutene, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Glycerin, Triethanolamine, Phenylbenzimidazole Sulfonic Acid, Porphyra Umbilicalis Extract, C20-22 Alkyl Phosphate, Methyl Methacrylate Crosspolymer, Shea Butter, Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane, Sodium Hyaluronate, Voandzeia Subterranea Seed Extract, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Squalane, Panthenol, C20-22 Alcohols, PEG-6, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Polysorbate 60, Disodium EDTA, Alcohol, Lecithin, Ethylparaben, Propylparaben, Sodium Lactate, Butylparaben, Isobutylparaben, Yellow 5, Red 4

Brand Overview

Marcelle At-A-Glance

Strengths: Inexpensive; Marcelle provides complete ingredient lists on its Web site; drugstores that retail this brand provide testers, including makeup testers; almost every product is fragrance-free; some good cleansers and makeup removers; impressive eyeshadows; great lipsticks and lip glosses.

Weaknesses: The hypoallergenic claims are misleading because this claim isn't regulated and there are no standards governing its use; formaldehyde-releasing preservatives not recommended for those with sensitive skin; the anti-acne products are mostly alcohol, which is damaging to skin and can increase oil production, making acne worse; dated moisturizer formulas; some greasy cleansers; a general lack of state-of-the-art ingredients; foundations with sunscreen do not provide sufficient UVA protection; average to poor mineral makeup; no shades for those with tan or darker complexions; mostly lackluster mascaras.

Nestled among the flashier lines filling the shelves and display cases in Canadian drugstores is this unassuming, attractively priced skin-care and makeup product line. The packaging is simple and the message clear: These are "hypoallergenic and perfume-free," ergo great for sensitive skin. In reality the claim that these products are hypoallergenic isn't accurate in the least—much like Almay—but that claim is Marcelle's major selling point.

First, the term "hypoallergenic" is not regulated; that is, there are no standards in place for that term so a cosmetics company can attribute hypoallergenic to any product they want, regardless of the ingredients. The second point is that even the most scrupulous company, even if it takes the greatest care about what ingredients it includes in its products, simply cannot know what your skin may be allergic to. Marcelle showcases the elimination of "perfume," (aka fragrance) but fragrance is not the only potential culprit in a cosmetic formulation. And third, allergic reactions are not the primary problems that a cosmetic can impart to skin. Irritation is far more pernicious and, indeed, many of Marcelle's products contain ingredients that have a high potential for causing irritation, such as alcohol, sodium lauryl sulfate, and formaldehyde-releasing preservatives (e.g., imidazolidinyl urea, DMDM hydantoin, and Quaternium 15; one of their products even contains hydrochloric acid. (Can you believe that?!) Irritating skin-care ingredients not only cause free-radical damage but also lead to an increase in oil production in the pore and break down collagen.

Aside from the erroneous claims, Marcelle hasn't kept up to speed with their formulas in comparison to several other lines at the drugstore. You can easily find moisturizers from other lines that have far more elegant textures and formulas teeming with beneficial ingredients just not from Marcelle. Almost every product Marcelle sells is woefully out of date; their rudimentary formulas are akin to using a typewriter instead of a computer.

Color-wise, you'll find the foundation, concealer, and powder shade ranges are limited to those with fair to medium skin tones. Although it's great that the Marcelle displays provide testers for the makeup, much of it is better left alone. There are some high points, particularly the powder eyeshadows, lipstick, and lip glosses, but the mascaras are barely exciting, the pencils all need sharpening, and the powder blush fails to impress.

All told, Marcelle is best viewed as a line with a few sleeper products worth checking out at price points that won't stress most consumers' budgets, although a few dollars more will get you infinitely better options.

For more information about Marcelle, call (800) 387-7710 or visit www.marcelle.com.

Note: *All prices are in Canadian dollars.

About the Experts

The new Beautypedia Team proudly and unequivocally maintains the commitment to help you find the best products possible for your skin. We do this by relentlessly pursuing and relying on published scientific research so you will have unbiased information on what works and what doesn't-and the sneaky ways you could be making your skin worse, not better!


The Beautypedia Team reviews all products using the same research, criteria, and objectivity, whether the product being reviewed is from Paula's Choice or another brand.

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