01.29.2014
0
NARS
Aqua Gel Luminous Oil-Free Moisturizer
Rating
1.8 fl. oz. for $58
Category:
Last Updated:01.29.2014
Jar Packaging:False
pH:
Tested on animals:No
Overview

This moisturizer has a silky, light texture but its formula is incredibly basic (NARS may be a master at makeup, but his pricey skin care is not in the same league). This will help slightly dry, dehydrated skin look and feel better, but there are many other, less expensive moisturizers that go much further to improve skin via proven beneficial ingredients.

Although this contains some intriguing plant and vitamin ingredients, they won’t hold up for long due to 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).

Note that the “dynamic aqua technology” mentioned in the claims is just a fancy way of stating that the company combined several water-binding agents to help your skin retain moisture. In truth, hundreds of moisturizers offer this benefit, regardless of what NARS chooses to name it.

 

Claims

A refreshing, aqua-rich gel-cream that hydrates, revitalizes and fortifies the skin. Enriched with Dynamic Aqua Technology to improve water retention, skin becomes supple and fine lines and wrinkles noticeably soften.

Contains the NARS exclusive Light Reflecting Complex™ designed to restore skin's youthful radiance and reflect light like a prism.

Ingredients

Water, Dimethicone, Dipropylene Glycol, Glycerin, Isododecane, Pentaerythrityl Tetraethylhexanoate, Glycereth-26, Xylitol, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/VP Copolymer, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Methicone, Butylene Glycol, PEG-11 Methyl Ether Dimethicone, Caprylyl Glycol, Polysilicone-11, Bis-Vinyldimethicone/PEG-10 Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Parfum, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Maris Aqua, Polysorbate 80, Carbomer, Adenosine, Potassium Hydroxide, Disodium EDTA, Ascophyllum Nodosum, Ophiopogon Japonicus, Carrageenan, Maris Sal, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sophora Angustifolia, Barium Sulfate, Paeonia Albiflora, Thymus Serpillum, Potassium Sorbate, Citric Acid, Fagus Sylvatica, Plankton Extract, Alumina, Benzoic Acid, Mica, CI 77891/Titanium Dioxide, CI 77492/Iron Oxides

Brand Overview

NARS At-A-Glance

Strengths: Great range of foundation shades; excellent blushes; some impressive lipsticks; beautiful bronzers; tinted lip balm with broad-spectrum sun protection.

Weaknesses: Expensive; the skincare line rates as mostly mediocre to poor; unimpressive mascaras.

Frenchman Francois Nars has been painting the faces of New York's top models since arriving in the United States in 1984. Their images and his handiwork have been seen on the covers of countless fashion magazines, most notably Vogue and Elle. As the story often goes for the talented makeup artists who have become celebrities in their own right, Nars became frustrated with the state of available makeup and, surprise, another cosmetic line was born.

Beginning (as Bobbi Brown did) by launching a small collection of lipsticks in 1994, the clamor for the colors was incredible, and demand for more NARS products from the artist grew. Shortly thereafter an entire product line followed, gaining women's attention with sleek, tactile-enhanced packaging and risqué shade names.

As an overview, NARS makeup has many strengths, but just as many weaknesses. It reaches its zenith with blushes, foundation shades, brushes, and lipsticks, but falters when it comes to pencils, and mascaras. Still, the best of NARS are really spectacular, and include expanded color palettes.

Although much can be said about the makeup side of this cosmetics line, there is very little, if anything, to be said about the skin-care products other than "Why bother?" or better yet, "What were they thinking?" Most of the cleansers are drying, the toners are dated formulations of alcohol and other irritants, and the moisturizers are mundane, poorly conceived and dated formulations. A little grape juice and fennel won't save a mix of alcohol, film-forming agent, and waxes, especially not at these inflated prices. And sunscreen? Completely absent; it's not even discussed. The assembly of products is attractively presented at NARS counters, but don't be fooled!

For more information about NARS, owned by Shiseido, call (888) 788-6277 or visit www.narscosmetics.com.

About the Experts

The Beautypedia Research Team is dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products for your skin, using research-based criteria to review beauty products from an honest, balanced perspective. Each member of the team was personally trained by Paula Begoun herself.

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