Monday, June 23, 2014

Review: Even Advanced CC Cream | Alba Botanica

One of best things about the beauty world, is its constant urge to innovate and create. With BB Creams slowing loosing their sparkle, the new hot word on the street are CC Creams. Known as "colour correcting" products, they are often sheerer, lighter and meant to enhance rather than cover. I picked up the Alba Botanica Even Advanced CC Cream on my last iHerb haul (see video) to see if "natural" could really get the job done, especially when it comes to the complex world of base makeup.


THE BASICS
Brand: Alba Botanica
Product: Even Advanced CC Cream SPF15
Colours: Fair-light, light-medium
SPF: Zinc oxide, Titanium Dixode
Size: 50grams
Price: $12-15USD (often on sale at iHerb)
Details: 100% Vegetrian ingredients, no animal testing, no artificial colours, no synthetic fragrances, no parabens, no phthalates, no sodium lauryl sulfate.
Availability: iHerb (online), select natural health stores/markets
Would I repurchase: No.

The Even Advanced CC Cream has many things going for it. The simple slim plastic tube houses 50ml of product in an easy to dispense squeeze format, topped with a flip cap. Labeled as a "tinted mineral perfector", its light SPF content is a popular mix of old traditional zinc oxide and titanium dioxide which are know to be gentle on sensitive skin.


The product itself is quit thick with a creamy, slightly tacky consistency that is a cocktail of moisturizing ingredients such as aloe, shea butter, crambe abyssincia seed oil (essential fatty acids) and soybean oil, just to name a few. While no synthetic fragrances are added, this cc cream smells slightly of old fashioned sunscreen but with a hint of sweetness.

Application is easy and can be done equally well with a foundation brush or just your finger tips, covering up a few pores and smoothing over the skin with relative ease. If you have trouble with dry patches, patting this over the skin instead of rubbing will help it go on more evenly.


Two shades are available, Fair-Light and Light-Medium, a rather disappointing selection as the range is neither very pale or very dark. The Fair-Light which I own (see above) swatched rather peachy, the wrong undertone for my skin but because the sheer coverage made it less noticeable.


As a "colour correcting" product, I think it does serve its purpose though I'm not sure if this exact colour does much for my skin tone. A concealer is definitely needed to cover under eye circles and other blemishes. I would even recommend laying down a primer if you have large pores like I do.


Looking at the photos again, I'm surprised at how well this photographs and seems to soften the look of my skin. Despite those gains, this CC Cream feels terribly suffocating on my face and I had to fight the urge to wipe it down only an hour after putting it on. Better suited for dry to very dry skin, this was fabulous at keeping skin hydrated and would might even be a choice for normal skin types during the winter season. However, with its creamy formulation, this never quite sets on the skin and remains slightly tacky with a heavy feel, a drawback that seems to hover over most mineral/natural base products.

On my combination skin, longevity was also poor and a slight brush with a tissue meant transfer marks. Topping things off with a powder may help slightly but do choose a very lightweight invisible powder (Make Up For Ever's HD Pressed) to prevent adding extra heaviness on the skin. At the end of the day, product pooled in my pores while other areas looked patchy and worn down. I finally gave up on this after noticing clogged pores and some burgeoning spots after a few days of wear. Alas this was just too heavy for my skin.


THE FINAL VERDICT
Despite how much I loved the look of the ingredients and its abundance of moisturizing additives, the texture, colour and overall feel of this product was a letdown. Alba Botanica's Even Advanced CC Cream lacks the sophisticated texture for it to adaptable for a larger variety of skin types. In the end, I just could not bear to keep on wearing it. I would only recommend this to those with very dry skin and/or a peachier skin tone. Everyone else should probably move on.


STAY IN TOUCH



Active ingredients: Zinc Oxide 4.0% (Sunscreen), Titanium Dioxide 3.5% (Sunscreen)
Inactive Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Isoamyl Laurate, Crambe Abyssinica Seed Oil, Polyglyceryl-2 Sesquioleate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Coconut Alkanes, Glycerin, Polyglyceryl-3 Ricineoleate, Propanediol, Algae Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice(1), Beta Vulgaris (Beet) Root Extract, Chlorella Pyrenoidosa Extract, Chondrus Cruspus Extract(1), Dictyopteris Membranacea Extract, Echinacea Purpurea Extract, Enteromorpha Compressa Extract, Laminaria Digitata Extract, Macrocystis Pyrifera Extract, Pancratium Maritimum Extract, Polygonum Aviculare Extract, Spirulina Maxima Extract(1), Ulva Lactuca Extract(1), Brassica Campestris (Rapeseed) Seed Oil, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Peel Oil, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Alumina, Calcium Ascorbate, Caesalpinia Spinosa Gum, Coco-Caprylate/Caprate, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Hydrolyzed Corn Starch, Lactic Acid, Magnesium Stearate, Magnesium Sulfate, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Starch, p-Anisic Acid, Polyhydroxystearic Acid, Sodium Chloride, Sodium Hyaluronate, Sorbitan Sesquioleate, Stearic Acid, Talc, Tocopheryl Acetate, Alcohol(1), Benzyl Alcohol, Phenoxyethanol, Hexyl Cinnamal, Limonene, Linalool, Bismuth Oxychloride (CI 77163), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), Mica (CI 77019), Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891). (1) Certified Organic Ingredient 
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* This post contains an iHerb rewards code that I was given upon my introduction as a first time customer. When used by other first time customers, I gain rewards points which can be redeemed towards my own next purchase for a limited time. This "cash back" reward comes from iHerb's own marketing budget, not from your order.

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