Although this moisturizer contains some good ingredients to improve dryness and reduce redness from sensitive skin, it’s disappointing that it also contains the fragrance ingredient ethylene brassylate. Although not labeled as “fragrance,” this ingredient’s sole function is just that: fragrance. A lesser concern, but still worth mentioning, is the inclusion of artificial coloring agents.
Ideally, a moisturizer for sensitive, reddened skin should be fragrance- and colorant-free and loaded with repairing and soothing ingredients. This contains some great soothing ingredients, but it loses points in other areas where it counts, hence, the neutral rating.
- Contains a nice mix of ingredients to improve dry skin while reducing redness.
- Contains fragrance in the form of ethylene brassylate (for sensitive skin, fragrance-free is a must).
- Artificial coloring agents are not the best additions to a product meant for sensitive skin.
- Lacks a good range of skin-repairing ingredients to strengthen skin’s barrier function.
Daily use of products that contain a high amount of fragrance, whether the fragrant ingredients are synthetic or natural, causes chronic irritation that can damage healthy collagen production, lead to or worsen dryness, and impair your skin’s ability to heal. Fragrance-free is the best way to go for all skin types, especially sensitive, reddened skin. If fragrance in your skin-care products is important to you, it should be a very low amount to minimize the risk to your skin (Sources: Inflammation Research, December 2008, pages 558–563; Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, June 2008, pages 124–135, and November-December 2000, pages 358–371; Journal of Investigative Dermatology, April 2008, pages 15–19; Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, March 2008, pages 78–82; Mechanisms of Ageing and Development, January 2007, pages 92–105; and British Journal of Dermatology, December 2005, pages S13–S22).
Extra-gentle, oil-free lightweight moisturizer instantly helps relieve redness and irritation, while providing all day hydration. Restorative moisturizer soothes dry, itchy and flakey skin, while helping to strengthen and condition it.
Water, Dicaprylyl Maleate, Sorbitan Stearate, Ethyl Macadamiate, Butylene Glycol, Stearic Acid, Aesculus Hippocastanum (Horse Chestnut) Seed Extract, Ammonium Glycyrrhizate, Boerhavia Diffusa Root Extract, Caffeine, Ethylene Brassylate, Glycerin, Glyceryl Stearate SE, Mannitol, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Sorbityl Laurate, Xanthan Gum, Zinc Gluconate, Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexyl Glycerin, Hexylene Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Blue 1, Yellow 5
There aren't really any doctors at Physicians Formula (the founder of the company was an allergist, Dr. Frank Crandell, but that was back in 1937), and no physicians currently sell or endorse it either. The company asserts that "The term hypoallergenic is more than just a cosmetic claim for Physicians Formula. It is the basis for every product that is created. Physicians Formula honors this claim through stringent product testing and quality control. In fact, Physicians Formula products are formulated without 132 known irritating ingredients still found in many cosmetics on the market today." While the line doesn't list the "132 known irritating ingredients" that they claim not to use, one of their newer products contains menthol, which serves no purpose for skin other than to cause irritation, and other products contain alcohol and witch hazel, which won't make any cosmetic chemist's or dermatologist's list of anti-irritants.
It's good that the skin-care products have been streamlined. There are some excellent makeup removers and a couple of gentle sunscreens whose sole active ingredient is titanium dioxide. Surveying this line in its entirety reveals that makeup is its major focus. However, as you'll see from the Physicians Formula makeup reviews below, things aren't exactly rosy there, either.
For more information about Physicians Formula, call (800) 227-0333 or visit www.physiciansformula.com.
Physicians Formula Makeup
Does this assortment of makeup products have what the doctor ordered? The enormous selection of makeup (no other line at the drugstore sells more individual pressed powders, concealers, or powder bronzers) has seen some noteworthy improvements in recent years, but far too much of it is still built on gimmicky premises or eye-catching graphics while performance and texture are given short shrift. And for a line where just about every product carries on about its goodness for sensitive skin and the non-comedogenic nature of its ingredients, they're not using anything that other companies aren't also using, not to mention that many of the ingredients that show up in these products (such as waxes and occlusive thickening agents) can absolutely clog pores.
Still, for a line with increased retail presence in major drugstores, you may be wondering just what to pay attention to, and the good news is that there are indeed some finds among all the mosaic powders and oddly packaged concealers. Physicians Formula has never done foundations and concealers well, and for the most part that still holds true today. Only one of their concealers is recommended, while the others are best described as dismal. The expansive powder category has several attractive options, including a pressed powder with sun protection and many worthwhile bronzing powders. You'll also find best beauty buys among the blushes and other key products, including the matte eyeshadows, felt-tip eyeliner, brow pencil, and a few of the mascaras. There isn't anything medical or extra-pure about Physicians Formula makeup, but if you know what to look for and are on a budget there are some products that any doctor concerned with the subject of beauty would appreciate!
Note: The shade range of this line does not cater to darker skin tones. In fact, for some products, only those with fair to light skin will find options.