Sorry to bombard everyone with so many posts; I'm trying to get through backlogged photos before I forget about them, and before I get too busy with school again this week! Also, I bought way too much stuff from Sephora with the 15% discount; I kind of used it as an excuse to get everything I anticipated needing for summer so that I WILL NOT BUY ANYTHING MAKEUP RELATED for awhile. There. It's typed out, that means someone is holding me accountable; I have more than enough to keep me occupied for months. I filled in some conspicuous gaps in my makeup collection, and I'm excited about doing a few "summer" looks. I put air quotes around that since I'm not into pastels or most brights; I bought a coral lip gloss, an orange based red lipstick, a bright teal eyeliner, a pale pink sheer lipstick, and a muted bright fuchsia blush (among other things...). That sounds like summer to me! But I digress, on to the review.
As we go into the summer months and I spend more time outdoors, I am realizing it will soon be time to retire my winter moisturizer; it only has an SPF 15, which isn't enough when I'm spending more time outdoors. But since I love it so much, and I know a lot of people aren't as paranoid about sunblock as I am, I felt like it was worth a review, especially since I'm already on my 3rd bottle, and I rarely repurchase skincare; I always look for something better. However, right now, I feel like I've found a routine that works for my skin to keep it moisturized and clear; my skin is really dry, but I get the occasional breakout, and it can get irritated and ruddy fairly easily. I don't know about you guys, but I love me some Trader Joe's! I know it's not conveniently located to everybody, even within the US, but it's my primary grocery store; they have really fun, interesting things, and the prices for normal foods are cheaper than big chains. Recently, I've started trying out some of their body care, since I know people rave about the shampoo and conditioner (which I have not tried). At any rate, their facial moisturizer is only $4 for 4 ounces, is cruelty free, PABA free, paraben free (as far as I can tell... if anyone with more experience reading ingredients lists than I can tell me if I'm wrong, please do in the comments), includes vitamins A and E, has an SPF 15 (with part chemical-boo!- but also part physical-yay!- sunblock), and it doesn't irritate my skin. It has a relatively thick lotion consistency without being as rich as a cream, and it soaks into my skin quickly; the scent is mild and fresh, and I hardly notice it. I've used Olay, L'Oreal, and Aveeno face lotions in the past, and I like this better than any of the others I've tried. On it's own, it's moisturizing enough during average weather, but during the dry months, I use a little bit of body oil (NARS- only body oil that doesn't break my face out!) underneath it for an extra boost. This also claims to be cruely free, although I have no way to check up on this.
Rating: 8 out of 10
I've been very pleased with this face moisturizer, and the price is great! I'd gladly play double for the product, but I'm glad I don't have to; in fact, I've paid more than double for competing products, and haven't been as happy. The only thing I wish is that this were a tad thicker (so I could use it in the winter without anything under it!) and that it had all physical barrier as sunblock, and no chemical sunblock. For those of you who don't know about the physical barrier vs. chemical issue, chemical blockers are possible carcinogens, and aside from that, they can irritate sensitive skin. My dermatologist was really opposed to them and told me that with my sensitive skin, I should be avoiding them, and I trust her! However, it's really hard to find sunblocks with just physical barriers (like minerals that don't allow UV rays to touch your skin), when you do they're pricey, and they leave an awful white cast. I feel like this is a good compromise; unlike a lot of moisturizers with SPF, it only relies partially on a chemical barrier (and only one kind; a lot of sunblocks have 2 or 3!), but doesn't have so much zinc oxide to leave a white cast or result in an inflated price tag. If you're near a Trader Joe's and looking for a really great, inexpensive daily moisturizer, definitely check this out! It's a great product, and you don't have to pay for branding and advertising.