Physicians Formula has carried the "BB" craze over to powders, but don't get too caught up in the hype. The truth is that "beauty balm" products of any sort are just a marketing angle to make you believe you're getting something special, when in most cases they are standard formulas dressed up with the BB name. Check out this article for more info.
BB madness aside, this is a beautiful, fragrance-free pressed powder with reliable broad-spectrum sun protection, but do not rely on it as your only source of sun protection unless you are willing to apply it liberally in a noticeable layer (a sheer dusting won't do it). The silky, almost creamy, texture, and the soft, luminous finish make it ideal for normal to dry skin. The non-chalky, medium-to-full coverage finish wears nicely on bare skin as well as over foundation. Physician's Formula typically does pressed powders well, and this keeps with tradition.
Although only two shades are offered, both are flattering and will work for light to tan skin tones. Those with fair to dark skin aren't well-served here.
One more comment: This powder cannot guard against moisture loss as claimed. Although the formula contains some moisturizing ingredients, it contains many more absorbent ingredients, providing a dry finish that cannot protect against moisture loss.
- Silky-smooth pressed-powder texture is ideal for normal to dry skin.
- Fragrance-free formula with soft, luminous finish.
- Reliable broad-spectrum sun protection for added anti-aging benefit.
- Medium-to-full coverage finish wears nicely on bare skin or over foundation.
- Flattering shades.
- The BB craze is a marketing gimmick.
- Limited shade selection.
Active: Titanium Dioxide (15%), Zinc Oxide (10%). Other: Mica, Zinc Stearate, Octyldodecyl Stearoyl Stearate, Dimethicone, Boron Nitride, Vinyl Dimethicone/Methicone Silsesquioxane Crosspolymer, Magnesium Silicate, Lauroyl Lysine, Triethylhexanoin, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract, Perilla Ocymoides Seed Oil, Lysolecithin, Glycerin, Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Calcium Aluminum Borosilicate, Silica, Glyceryl Caprylate, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Dehydroacetate. May Contain: Iron Oxides, Titanium Dioxide.
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.