If this cleanser is the “ultimate” for skin as Marcelle claims, then they should stop selling all of their other cleansers and direct their customers to this ultimate option—Right? “Ultimate” is just an adjective, used frequently in marketing, but in this case, as it turns out, this product is one of Marcelle’s several excellent cleansers, and one to consider. The fragrance-free formula is a water-soluble, detergent-based cleansing lotion that’s ideal for normal to dry skin. You’ll find the lightly foaming texture works great to remove makeup and leaves skin silky-smooth. I wouldn’t consider it a “new age” of cleansing, but it’s still a great fragrance-free cleanser worth checking out.
The ultimate cleanser for natural and healthy looking skin. A moment of exquisite pleasure is what this cleanser has to offer your skin, leaving it comfortable and soft. When in contact with water it gently foams into a light as air cloud of cleanser to purify skin without disturbing its natural balance. The extra-mild and non-drying formula makes it a must for all skin types: soy bean extract increases your skin’s ability to retain moisture and prevents the appearance of wrinkles, while algae extract infuses moisture where it’s needed. The antioxidant and emollient properties of olive oil are a generous extra as well as the soothing and healing actions of Shea butter. Hypo-allergenic and perfume free. Ideal for all skin types.
Water, Sodium Cocoyl Glycinate, Cetyl Alcohol, Stearyl Alcohol, Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate, Glycol Distearate, Sodium PCA, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Olea Europaea (Olive) Oil Unsaponifiables, Ceramide 3, Algae Extract, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Seed Extract, Disodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Sodium Cocoyl Apple Amino Acids, Xanthan Gum, Silica, Sodium Dicocoylethylenediamine PEG-15 Sulfate, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Hydrolyzed Oats, Sodium Magnesium Silicate, Bentonite, Propylene Glycol, Disodium EDTA, Diazolidinyl Urea, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate.
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.