This lightweight cream has a sheer, skin-enhancing tint that looks best on light to medium skin tones (it's a bit too dark for fair skin). Despite the skin enhancement and light moisture, this is yet another product from Alba Botanica that's not as "good and healthy" as it seems!
Like all of the other Good & Healthy products, this one also contains lavender oil. We admit, lavender smells great, but fragrance isn't skin care—and research has shown that even a small amount of lavender oil can be detrimental. See More Info to learn why lavender is such a problem.
Without the lavender oil, this moisturizer would be worthwhile for all but very dry skin types. It contains a fairly good mix of plant-based antioxidants and has a smooth, non-greasy finish.
Because this doesn't contain sun protection, it wouldn't be a good choice for daytime use unless you're willing to follow application with a product rated SPF 25 or greater. But given this product's formulary drawback, we're not recommending it for day or nighttime use!
- Lightweight yet hydrating lotion texture.
- Non-greasy finish works well under makeup.
- Contains a good mix of beneficial natural ingredients which have antioxidant action.
- Lavender oil is a known skin irritant even when used in tiny amounts.
Research indicates that components of lavender, specifically linalool, can be cytotoxic, which means that topical application causes skin-cell death (Source: Cell Proliferation, June 2004, pages 221–229). Lavender leaves contain camphor, which is a known skin irritant. Because the fragrance constituents in lavender oil oxidize when exposed to air, lavender oil is a pro-oxidant, and this enhanced oxidation increases its irritancy on skin (Source: Contact Dermatitis, September 2008, pages 143–150). Lavender oil is the most potent form, and even small amounts of it (0.25% or less) are problematic. Although it's fine as an aromatherapy agent for inhalation or relaxation, it is a must to avoid in skin-care products. (Sources: Psychiatry Research, February 2007, pages 89–96; and www.naturaldatabase.com).
Loaded with Lutein, multiple vitamins and other phytonutrients, the Kale, Spinach and Swiss Chard blend in this multi-tasking moisturizer combine with light-diffusing minerals to nourish skin while helping imperfections disappear.
Aqua (Water), Isoamyl Laurate, Glycerin, Glyceryl Stearate SE, Cetearyl Olivate, Cetyl Alcohol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Coco- Caprylate/Caprate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Sorbitan Olivate, Garcinia Indica Seed Butter, Beta Vulgaris Cicla Extract, Brassica Oleracea Acephala Leaf Extract, Echinacea Purpurea Extract, Elettaria Cardamomum Seed Extract, Lactobacillus/Arundinaria Gigantea Ferment Filtrate, Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Rubus Idaeus (Raspberry) Leaf Extract, Spinacia Oleracea (Spinach) Leaf Extract, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Bisabolol, Calcium Ascorbate, Jojoba Esters, Retinyl Palmitate, Sodium Chloride, Sodium Stearoyl Glutamate, Sucrose, Tapioca Starch, Tocopheryl Acetate, Xanthan Gum, Xanthophyl, Alcohol, Benzyl Alcohol, Phenoxyethanol, Sorbic Acid, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), Mica (CI 77019), Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891)
Alba Botanica is part of the Avalon Natural Products group, which is owned by natural product marketer Hain-Celestial. In addition to owning the Jason Natural and Zia Natural brands, Hain-Celestial also owns Avalon Organics, of which Alba Botanica is a part. Although Alba Botanica is not any thinking person's definition of an all-natural line—they use plenty of synthetic ingredients, including sunscreen actives and preservatives—they shine in comparison to the mostly disappointing products offered under the Avalon Organics name, but that's not saying a lot.
As far as the "natural" visage Alba Botanica portrays—while they do use plenty of natural ingredients, for the most part it's the non-natural ingredients that contribute to each product's texture and function; but then highlighting those ingredients isn't going to attract attention from consumers seeking natural products, is it? Because there are no established standards for use of the word "natural," any cosmetics company can take advantage of the term, as Alba Botanica does.
Despite not being an all-natural line (which isn't a bad thing), much of what they offer, while not state-of-the-art spectacular, is still worth considering. The prices are competitive with those of drugstore and health food store brands, and they offer some very good options in the categories of cleanser, scrub, sunscreens for face and body, lip balms without sunscreen, and a self-tanner.
It is also worth mentioning that Avalon Products (remember, Alba Botanica is part of this master brand) is commendable in that it uses environmentally conscious business practices, including solar-powered offices and warehouse and relying on organic farming for several of their ingredients. Their environmentalism may or may not correspond to good skin care, but it is admirable. As we have said many times before, just because an ingredient is organic doesn't make it safe or effective for skin (and there's no proof that an organic ingredient is preferred to a synthetic ingredient when it comes to skin care), but the practice of organic farming is a positive step toward creating products that reduce negative environmental impact.
Turning to what Alba Botanica needs help with, you'll see they fall short of being a comprehensive line. There are no reliable exfoliants such as AHAs or BHA products, and those struggling with blemishes or any type of skin discoloration are out of luck. Also, not every sunscreen (especially those for lips) makes the grade in terms of providing sufficient UVA-protecting ingredients, and some of the toners have truly boring, antiquated formulas. Other less impressive products include the enzyme scrubs, masks, and a few of the jar-packaged moisturizers.
Overall, these products aren't the most advanced around, but comparatively speaking they best many other products from brands with a natural angle (Lauder-owned Origins comes to mind).
For more information about Alba Botanica, call (888) 659-7730 or visit www.albabotanica.com.